March 14, 2008

Spring practice: Day two

The Alabama football team finished the second of two spring practices prior to Spring Break on Friday, working once again in helmets and shorts at the Thomas-Drew Practice Fields. While day one on Thursday was rife with position changes, day two provided a few interesting notes of its own.

*** Offensive lineman Evan Cardwell worked at right guard with the second group for the second day in a row. Cardwell played center last season while Antoine Caldwell sat out a four-game suspension. On Friday, Caldwell and redshirt freshman William Vlachos worked at center.

*** Chris Rogers, who worked exclusively as a safety last season, worked with cornerbacks on Friday. Rogers, a career reserve and special teams player, adds yet another face to the race in the replacement of outgoing senior corner Simeon Castille. Javier Arenas, who was switched from corner to safety midseason last year, also worked with corners for the second day in a row.

*** Alfred McCullough worked at defensive end in the third group. McCullough was a noseguard last year in a redshirt season, and has more of interior lineman's build. It is unclear if McCullough's placement at end is merely in response to the depth shortage there, or if it is something more permanent. Friday was McCullough's second day in a row doing drillwork with the ends.

*** Cornerback Lionel Mitchell did not practice Friday. There was no official explanation for his absence, though the senior does appear on the spring roster, which was released following the media viewing period.

*** Offensive lineman Drew Davis worked with the first group at right tackle, while Taylor Pharr worked with the second group. On Thursday, Pharr worked ahead of Davis. As With the right tackle spot something of a question mark, movement in that grouping could be common throughout spring drills. Davis appears to have added some size since last season.

*** The inside linebackers working with the second group Friday were Charlie Higginbotham and redshirt freshman Jennings Hester. Higginbotham was at the middle linebacker spot while Hester worked at the weakside.

*** Injury update: Longsnapper Paul Silvey wore a black non-contact jersey but worked with the specialists. ... For the second day in a row, receiver Marquis Maze was in a black jersey and worked out on his own rather than with his position group. ... Running back Glen Coffee was again wearing black.

*** Jonathan Lowe, who was switched from receiver to running back last year, worked with the backs.

*** A scheduled post-practice news conference with UA coach Nick Saban was canceled.

*** The Crimson Tide will resume practice on March 24.

*** Watch later today for video and photo gallery updates from the second day of drills.

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