No front-runner in Alabama QB competition; no concern, either?
For the second straight year, it is unknown who will emerge from a summer/fall competition to become Alabama's starting quarterback. While that would be a reason for concern for most teams, as Edward Aschoff of ESPN recently pointed out, the Tide managed to do OK with last year's uncertainty, as Blake Sims took charge of the position and ended up leading one of the most prolific offenses in Alabama history on a team that advanced to the first College Football Playoff.
Even with Sims gone this season, there remains plenty of talent -- albeit unproven talent -- at the position in Tuscaloosa.
Jacob Coker, who competed with Sims for the starting job heading into the 2014 season, is still on campus and has not only NFL-caliber arm strength but now a full year of experience in Lane Kiffin's system after his transfer from Florida State, where he briefly backed up Jameis Winston. Coker was taking a majority of the reps with the first team in spring practice, so if there is a favorite to win the job at this point, it's likely him.
But the Tide aren't lacking for competition. Redshirt freshman David Cornwell, a top-100 recruit two years ago, made strides in the spring and showed enough talent and grasp of the offense to be considered by many to be right there with Coker in the competition.
"In some cases he did a really good job. A couple of other times I'm sure he's going to learn from that experience and have a chance to do better," Nick Saban told Alabama Media of Cornwell's performance during spring practice.
Saban has shown a unique ability to plug in quarterbacks and continue putting up double-digit-win seasons during his tenure in Tuscaloosa, and this year's Tide appear to have the talent to do so again. But in an SEC West that might be deeper than it's ever been, with all seven teams potential top-25 outfits, someone will have to step up and seize the starting job in the coming months if Alabama's reign is to continue.
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