No. 1 Alabama Falls to No. 2 Clemson in 2019 College Football Playoff National Championship Game, 44-16

01-07-19 MFB National Championship vs Clemson Alabama wide receiver Jerry Jeudy (4) Photo by Kent Gidley
01-07-19 MFB National Championship vs Clemson
Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (13)
Alabama running back Najee Harris (22)
Photo by Robert Sutton

SANTA CLARA, Calif. – The No. 1 Alabama football team fell against No. 2 Clemson, 44-16, in the 2019 College Football Playoff National Championship Game in Levi’s Stadium Monday night in Santa Clara, Calif. The Crimson Tide ends the season at 14-1, while the Tigers finish at 15-0.

 

Sophomore quarterback Tua Tagovailoa finished the game 22-of-34 for 295 yards to go along with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Sophomore wide out Jerry Jeudy ended the contest with five catches for 139 yards and a score.

 

On defense, sophomore defensive back Xavier McKinney had seven tackles and a pass breakup, while junior linebacker Mack Wilson and senior defensive end Isaiah Buggs each had six tackles.

 

Alabama opened on defense, forcing Clemson into a three-and-out. On the Tide’s third offensive play, Tagovailoa was picked off by A.J. Terrell who took the ball 44 yards for a touchdown. Clemson led 7-0 with 13:20 on the first quarter clock.

 

Tagovailoa quickly bounced back with a 62-yard touchdown strike to Jeudy to cap a three-play, 75-yard scoring drive. Redshirt freshman Joseph Bulovas’ extra point tied the game at 7-7 with 12:05 remaining in the opening quarter.

 

A minute and a half later the Tigers found the end zone after connecting for a 62-yard pitch-and-catch of their own before finishing off the drive with a 17-yard rush from Travis Etienne to take the 14-7 with 10:35 on the clock.

 

Alabama battled back by going on a methodical 10-play, 75-yard touchdown drive, with Tagovailoa finding senior tight end Hale Hentges wide open in the back of the end zone for the one-yard score. Bulovas’ extra point was no good, giving the Tigers a 14-13 advantage with 6:23 to go in the first.

 

Following a Clemson three-and-out, the Tide took the 16-14 lead with 14:18 remaining in the second quarter after Bulovas converted a 25-yard field goal to cap an 11-play, 45-yard drive.

 

The Tigers answered by driving 65 yards in 11 plays, capped by an Etienne one-yard run to put Clemson up 21-16 with 11:38 to go before halftime.

 

The Tigers got the ball back after Tagovailoa’s second interception was returned 46 yards to the UA 47-yard line. Eight plays later, the Tigers found the end zone for the fourth time in the half when quarterback Trevor Lawrence linked up with Etienne from five yards out to go up 28-16 with 4:38 left before the halftime break.

 

The Tigers extended their lead to 31-16 and carried the lead into the half after a 36-yard field goal with 45 seconds to go.

 

In the first half, Alabama outgained Clemson 266-224 while controlling the ball for 19:26 of the first 30 minutes of action.

 

Alabama drove the ball down the field to begin the second half but came up empty after a fake field goal attempt failed. On the ensuing Clemson drive, the Tigers connected for a 74-yard touchdown throw to go up 37-16 with 8:26 left in the third quarter. Later in the third, CU went on a 12-play, 89-yard drive capped by a five-yard throw-and-catch to push the lead to 44-16 with 21 seconds in the quarter.

 

The two sides traded possessions in the final quarter, with no further scoring.

Rain Forces Alabama Football Indoors as Tide Continues Preparations for National Championship Game

01-02-19 MFB CFP Practice Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (13) Photo by Robert Sutton 01-02-19 MFB CFP Practice Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (13) Photo by Robert Sutton

UA heads inside to the Hank Crisp Indoor Facility for Wednesday’s work

01-02-19 MFB CFP Practice
Alabama Scott Cochran Head Strength and Conditioning Coach
Photo by Robert Sutton

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The Alabama football team worked inside on Wednesday afternoon, practicing in full pads for two hours at the Hank Crisp Indoor Facility.

 

Wednesday’s practice was the Tide’s second of six workouts leading up to the 2019 College Football Playoff National Championship Game on Monday, Jan. 7 at 7 p.m. CT. Top-ranked Alabama will square off with No. 2 Clemson at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., with the game airing live on ESPN. The duo of Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit will call the action from the booth while Tom Rinaldi and Maria Taylor work the sidelines.

 

The national title matchup will be the 19th meeting all-time between the two programs and the fourth consecutive pairing in the College Football Playoff. Alabama owns a 14-4 advantage in the series, including a 2-1 mark in the Playoff. The Tide and Tigers squared off last year in the 2018 CFP Semifinal at the Allstate Sugar Bowl on Jan. 1 in New Orleans, La., with Alabama claiming a 24-6 win over the Tigers to send the Tide to Atlanta for a meeting with Georgia in the 2018 CFP National Championship Game.

No. 1 Alabama Beats No. 4 Oklahoma, 45-34, in College Football Playoff Semifinal

12-29-18 MFB vs Oklahoma Alabama defensive back Saivion Smith (4) Photo by Amelia J. Brackin

The Crimson Tide advances to its fourth-consecutive College Football Playoff National Championship Game where it will face No. 2 Clemson

12-29-18 MFB vs Oklahoma Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (13) Photo by Kent Gidley

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. – The No. 1 Alabama football team jumped out to a 28-0 lead and never looked back against No. 4 Oklahoma, winning 45-34 in the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Capital One Orange Bowl Saturday at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla.

The Crimson Tide (14-0) moves on to face No. 2 Clemson (14-0) in the 2019 College Football Playoff National Championship Game on Monday, Jan. 7, 2019 at Levi Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif.

Sophomore quarterback Tua Tagovailoa was impressive, going 24-of-27 for 318 yards and four touchdowns through the air. Sophomore wide receiver DeVonta Smith led the team with six catches for 104 yards and a score. Junior running back Josh Jacobs added 158 total yards and a touchdown, while senior running back Damien Harris racked up 48 yards on the ground and two touchdowns.

On the defensive side of the ball, sophomore linebacker Dylan Moses led the way with six tackles, while sophomore defensive back Xavier McKinney totaled five tackles to go along with a game-high four pass breakups.

The Tide started the game with a bang when Tagovailoa found Smith on a slant route across the middle for a 50-yard pitch-and-catch on the first play from scrimmage. Six plays later, Harris found the end zone from one yard out to get UA on the board. Following redshirt freshman Joseph Bulovas’ extra point the Tide held a 7-0 advantage with 11:54 left in the opening quarter.

After an Oklahoma three-and-out, Alabama added to its total when Tagovailoa found sophomore wide receiver Henry Ruggs III in the back of the end zone for a toe-tap 10-yard touchdown. Bulovas’ point after pushed the lead to 14-0 with 5:54 on the clock in the first quarter.

The Crimson Tide scored its third touchdown on its third offensive drive of the quarter after Harris found his way untouched into the end zone for his second one-yard score to cap a five-play, 61-yard drive. Bulovas’ extra point extended the lead to 21-0 with 1:33 remaining in the first.

Alabama continued to pour on the points in the second quarter when Tagovailoa connected with Jacobs out of the backfield who then rumbled 27 yards for the Tide’s fourth touchdown of the game. After Bulovas knocked through the extra point, UA held the 28-0 advantage with 13:01 left before the half.

The Sooners responded with a pair of scoring drives, scoring a touchdown with 11:48 to go in the second quarter before adding a field goal with 7:30 remaining in the half.

On its next offensive possession, Alabama added a field goal of its own after Bulovas knocked through a 37-yard attempt to make it 31-10 at the halftime break.

At the end of the first 30 minutes of play, the Tide outgained the Sooners 318-191 and held OU quarterback Kyler Murray to just 6-of-13 passing. The 10 points at the half were the lowest by Oklahoma all season.

Oklahoma scored twice in the third quarter, a 26-yard field goal and a 49-yard receiving touchdown to trim Alabama’s lead to 31-20 heading into the fourth quarter.

Tagovailoa put the Tide up 38-20 to begin the final quarter after finding Smith for another quick slant touchdown, this time from 10 yards out with 13:08 left in the game. Bulovas’ point after completed the methodical nine-play drive that accumulated 87 total yards.

The Sooners answered with its second touchdown of the half to cut the Alabama advantage to 38-27 with 8:31 to go in the contest.

The Tide bounced back with another touchdown when Tagovailoa connected with sophomore wideout Jerry Jeudy from 13 yards out to end a five-play, 46-yard scoring drive. Following the extra point from Bulovas, Alabama held the 45-27 edge with 6:08 remaining.

Oklahoma found the end zone again with 4:23 left in the game to cut the lead to 45-34. However, Alabama recovered the ensuing onside kick and ran out the clock for the victory.

The Tide compiled 528 yards of total offense and controlled the ball for 36 minutes of the game in the victory.

Alabama Football Practices on Wednesday in Miami for CFP Semifinal against Oklahoma

12/26/18 MFB vs BowlPractice3 Alabama Nick Saban Head Coach Photo by Kent Gidley

The Tide began the day with an Offensive/Defensive Press Conference before returning to Barry University for an afternoon practice

MIAMI – Day three in Miami featured a busy schedule for Alabama football on Wednesday. Six Crimson Tide student-athletes along with the Tide’s offensive and defensive coordinators took part in a press conference in the early morning before the entire team returned to Barry University for practice to close out the day.

Running back Damien Harris (senior), wide receiver Jerry Jeudy (sophomore) and quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (sophomore) joined offensive coordinator Michael Locksley at the press conference, while linebacker Dylan Moses (sophomore), safety Deionte Thompson (redshirt junior) and tackle Quinnen Williams (redshirt sophomore) spoke alongside defensive coordinator Tosh Lupoi. Following the morning media, the Crimson Tide gathered for meetings leading up to the team’s afternoon practice.

The two-hour session at Barry was UA’s 10th of 12 total practices building to the 2018 Capital One Orange Bowl. The College Football Playoff Semifinal will pit top-ranked Alabama against No. 4 Oklahoma on Saturday, Dec. 29. The two teams are set to kick off at 7 p.m. CT at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla., with the game airing live on ESPN. Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit will man the booth while Maria Taylor and Laura Rutledge work each team’s sideline during the game.

The Crimson Tide and Sooners will square off for the sixth time in the series. Alabama is 1-3-1 all-time against OU, including a 1-1-1 mark in postseason play. The two teams last met in the 2014 Sugar Bowl, with Oklahoma coming out on top, 45-31.

Christmas Day Practice Continues Alabama Football’s Schedule for Orange Bowl Matchup with Oklahoma

12/25/18 MFB vs OrangeBowlPractice2 Alabama wide receiver DeVonta Smith (6) Photo by Kent Gidley

Crimson Tide worked for two hours on Tuesday afternoon at Barry University

MIAMI – The Alabama football team took part in its second practice in Miami on Tuesday afternoon, working two hours in full pads at Barry University.

Tuesday’s workout was the Tide’s ninth of 12 total practices heading up to the Crimson Tide’s Orange Bowl contest in the College Football Playoff Semifinal against the fourth-ranked Oklahoma Sooners. The two teams are set to kick off at 7 p.m. CT on Saturday, Dec. 29, inside Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla. The 2018 Orange Bowl will be broadcast on ESPN, as Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit are set to call the game from the booth with Maria Taylor and Laura Rutledge splitting sideline duties.

Alabama and Oklahoma will meet for the sixth time in the history of the storied programs. The Crimson Tide holds a 1-3-1 mark all-time against OU, including a 1-1-1 record in postseason play. The two teams last played in the 2014 Sugar Bowl, with the Sooners earning a 45-31 victory.

Monday Begins Alabama Football’s Preparations in Miami for 2018 Orange Bowl


The Tide arrived in South Beach on Monday before heading to the practice fields of Barry University

MIAMI – Alabama football traveled to Miami on Monday, putting in a two-hour session on the practice fields at Barry University for the Crimson Tide’s first workout in South Beach.

12/24/18 MFB vs OrangeBowlPractice1 Alabama Nick Saban Head Coach Photo by Kent Gidley

The team spent Monday morning making the trip to Miami. Upon arrival, head coach Nick Saban along with student-athletes Tua Tagovailoa and Quinnen Williams took part in a quick press conference. Alabama then spent the afternoon working in shells for its first on-site workout.

Monday’s session was the Tide’s eighth of 12 total practices leading up to the College Football Playoff Semifinal matchup with fourth-ranked Oklahoma in the 2018 Capital One Orange Bowl. The Crimson Tide and Sooners are set for a 7 p.m. CT kickoff at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla.

Top-ranked Alabama will match up with No. 4 Oklahoma on Saturday, Dec. 29 on ESPN. Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit will have the call from the booth with Maria Taylor and Laura Rutledge working on each team’s sideline.

The Crimson Tide and Sooners will meet for the sixth time in the history of the two storied programs. Alabama is 1-3-1 all-time against OU, including a 1-1-1 mark in postseason play. The two teams last squared off in the 2014 Sugar Bowl, with Oklahoma claiming a 45-31 victory.

Nick Saban Named 2018 Walter Camp Coach of the Year

4/10118 MFB Practice Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban Photo by Robert Sutton 4/10118 MFB Practice Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban Photo by Robert Sutton

Crimson Tide head coach named the WCFF’s coach of the year for the second time in his career

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Alabama head coach Nick Saban has been named the 2018 Walter Camp Coach of the Year, the Walter Camp Football Foundation announced Thursday.

Saban, who has led the Crimson Tide to a 13-0 record, the school’s 27th Southeastern Conference championship and the No. 1 seed in the upcoming College Football Playoff this season, has earned the honor for the second time in his career. He was previously recognized in 2008 and joins Gene Stallings (1992) as the only Alabama head coaches to receive the award.

Under Saban, the Crimson Tide has reached the 13-win mark for the fourth straight season and the sixth time in his 12-year tenure at UA. Alabama is also making its fifth CFP appearance in 2018 and is the only school to appear in every edition of the playoff.

In 12 seasons with the Tide, Saban has posted a record of 145-20 (.879) and led Alabama to five national championships. He has a career record of 236-62-1 (.791) in 23 seasons as a collegiate head coach.

Saban, along with Walter Camp Player of the Year Tua Tagovailoa and other Walter Camp award winners, will be honored at the Walter Camp Football Foundation awards banquet on Jan. 12, 2019 in New Haven, Conn.

Orange Bowl Preparations Continue on Wednesday for Alabama Football

8/28/18 MFB vs Practice Alabama Nick Saban Head Coach Photo by Kent Gidley 8/28/18 MFB vs Practice Alabama Nick Saban Head Coach Photo by Kent Gidley

The Crimson Tide will wrap up the on-campus portion of bowl prep on Thursday

NICK SABAN WEDNESDAY PRESS CONFERENCE

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The Alabama Crimson Tide put in another two hours of work on Wednesday with a two-hour session in full pads at the Hank Crisp Indoor Facility.

Wednesday’s session was the sixth of seven bowl practices in Tuscaloosa before the holiday break and 12 practices overall prior to the College Football Playoff Semifinal against No. 4 Oklahoma in the Capital One Orange Bowl at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla.

The top-ranked Crimson Tide will face off with Sooners on Saturday, Dec. 29 with the game airing live on ESPN at 7 p.m. CT. Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit will call the semifinal matchup from the booth, while Maria Taylor and Laura Rutledge will work each team’s sideline.

The Crimson Tide will wrap up the on-campus portion of its bowl preparations with a brief workout on Thursday.

Alabama Football Adds 22 Student-Athletes on First Day of Early Signing Period

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Alabama football announced it has added 22 student-athletes to its 2019 recruiting class on the first day of the early signing period on Wednesday.

The 22 high school players come from 10 states – Alabama (6), Florida (3), Georgia (3), Maryland (3), New Jersey (2), Illinois (1), Kentucky (1), Louisiana (1), Mississippi (1) and Texas (1).

As of 4 p.m. CT on Wednesday, Alabama’s 2019 signing class was ranked No. 1 nationally by 247Sports, ESPN and Rivals.

As listed by position, the Crimson Tide add to its roster five offensive linemen, five linebackers, four defensive backs, three defensive linemen, two quarterbacks along with one player each at placekicker, tight end and wide receiver.

The early signees include DL Antonio Alfano (Colonia, N.J./Colonia), DB Jordan Battle (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./St. Thomas Aquinas), TE Jahleel Billingsley (Chicago, Ill./Phillips Academy), OL Tanner Bowles (Glasgow, Ky./Glasgow), DB Jeffery Carter (Mansfield, Texas/Legacy), DL Darrian Dalcourt (Baltimore, Md./St. Frances Academy), DL D.J. Dale (Pinson, Ala./Clay-Chalkville), LB Justin Ebiogbe (Forest Park, Ga./Forest Park), LB Christian Harris (Baton Rouge, La./University Lab), LB Kevin Harris II (Loganville, Ga./Grayson), DB DeMarco Hellams (Hyattsville, Md./DeMatha Catholic), DL Braylen Ingraham (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./St. Thomas Aquinas), OL Amari Kight (Alabaster, Ala./Thompson), LB Shane Lee (Baltimore, Md./St. Frances Academy), WR John Metchie (Highstown, N.J./The Peddle School), LB King Mwikuta (West Point, Ga./Troup County), OL Evan Neal (Okeechobee, Fla./IMG Academy), OL Pierce Quick (Trussville, Ala./Hewitt-Trussville), PK Will Reichard (Hoover, Ala./Hoover), QB Taulia Tagovailoa (Alabaster, Ala./Thompson), DB Brandon Turnage (Oxford, Miss/Lafayette) and QB Paul Tyson (Trussville, Ala./Hewitt-Trussville).

Among the 22 players are:

  • Two five-star prospects (by at least one of the following: 247Sports, Rivals, ESPN): Antonio Alfano and Evan Neal
  • Nineteen four-star prospects (by at least one of the following: 247Sports, Rivals, ESPN): Jordan Battle, Jahleel Billingsley, Tanner Bowles, Jeffery Carter, Darrian Dalcourt, D.J. Dale, Justin Eboigbe, Christian Harris, Kevin Harris II, DeMarcus Hellams, Braylen Ingraham, Amari Kight, Shane Lee, John Metchie, King Mwikuta, Pierce Quick, Taulia Tagovailoa, Brandon Turnage and Paul Tyson
  • Twelve players selected to participate in the Under Armour All-America Game: Jordan Battle, Jeffery Carter, Darrien Dalcourt, Justin Eboigbe, Kevin Harris II, Amari Kight, Shane Lee, King Mwikuta, Evan Neal, Pierce Quick, Will Reichard and Brandon Turnage
  • Three players selected to participate in the Army All American Bowl: Antonio Alfano, Christian Harris, and Taulia Tagovailoa
  • Eighteen players in the ESPN300: Antonio Alfano, Jordan Battle, Tanner Bowles, Jeffery Carter, D.J. Dale, Justin Eboigbe, Christian Harris, Kevin Harris II, DeMarcus Hellams, Braylen Ingraham, Amari Kight, Shane Lee, King Mwikuta, Evan Neal, Pierce Quick, Taulia Tagovailoa, Brandon Turnage and Paul Tyson
  • Six players in the Rivals100: Antonio Alfano, DeMarco Hellams, Amari Kight, Shane Lee, Evan Neal, and Pierce Quick
  • Fifteen players in the Rivals250: Antonio Alfano, Jordan Battle, Jahleel Billngsley, Justin Eboigbe, Kevin Harris II, DeMarco Hellams, Braylen Ingraham, Amari Kight, Shane Lee, John Metchie, King Mwikuta, Evan Neal, Pierce Quick, Taulia Tagovailoa and Brandon Turnage
  • The nation’s top kicking prospect: Will Reichard (ESPN.com, Rivals.com, 247Composite)

2019 Alabama Early Signing Day Roster

Signees (22)

NAME                           POS       HT           WT         HOMETOWN/SCHOOL

Antonio Alfano               DL         6-4           285        Colonia, N.J./Colonia

Jordan Battle                  DB         6-1           187        Fort Lauderdale, Fla. /St. Thomas Aquinas

Jahleel Billingsley            TE          6-4           216        Chicago, Ill./Phillips Academy

Tanner Bowles                OL         6-5           280        Glasgow, Ky./Glasgow

Jeffery Carter                 DB         6-0           186        Mansfield, Texas/Mansfield Legacy

Darrian Dalcourt             OL         6-3           290        Baltimore, Md./St. Frances

D.J. Dale                        DL         6-3           323        Pinson, Ala./Clay-Chalkville

Justin Ebiogbe               LB          6-5           263        Forest Park, Ga./Forest Park

Christian Harris              LB          6-2           239        Baton Rouge, La./University Lab

Kevin Harris II                LB          6-4           228        Loganville, Ga./Grayson

DeMarcco Hellams         DB         6-1           203        Hyattsville, Md./DeMatha Catholic

Braylen Ingraham           DL         6-4           260        Fort Lauderdale, Fla./St. Thomas Aquinas

Amari Kight                    OL         6-7           307        Alabaster, Ala./Thompson

Shane Lee                      LB          6-0           243        Baltimore, Md./St. Frances Academy

John Metchie                  WR        6-0           195        Hightstown, N.J./The Peddie School

King Mwikuta                 LB          6-5           240        West Point, Ga./Troup County

Evan Neal                       OL         6-7           360        Okeechobee, Fla./IMG Academy

Pierce Quick                   OL         6-5           285        Trussville, Ala./Hewitt-Trussville

Will Reichard                  PK          6-1           185        Hoover, Ala./Hoover

Taulia Tagovailoa            QB         5-11         203        Alabaster, Ala./Thompson

Brandon Turnage            DB         6-1           185        Oxford, Miss./Lafayette

Paul Tyson                      QB         6-5           217        Trussville, Ala./Hewitt-Trussville

PLAYER BIOS

ANTONIO ALFANO

DE, 6-4, 285, Colonia, N.J./Colonia

One of the top-rated defensive ends in the 2019 recruiting cycle … tabbed as a consensus five-star prospect and the top player in the state of New Jersey … rated as the No. 1 strongside defensive end by 247Sports and on the 247Composite … tabbed the No. 8 player in the nation by 247Sports while the Composite lists him as the 28th-best … ranked the No. 2 defensive tackle prospect and the 22nd-rated player in the country by Rivals.com … the No. 87 player on the ESPN300 … listed as the No. 12 defensive tackle in the recruiting class by ESPN.com …  the second-ranked defensive tackle and No. 24 player nationally by PrepStar … selected to participate in the All-American Game in San Antonio, Texas … earned first team all-state honors following his senior season … recorded 76 tackles, including 28 tackles for loss, and added 10 sacks, 10 quarterback hurries and six forced fumbles during 2018 … also saw time as one of the Patriots’ top offensive linemen, clearing the way for a Colonia offense that ran for 2,575 yards in 10 games … coached by Tom Roarty at Colonia … chose Alabama over Boston College, Florida, Florida State, Georgia and LSU among his nearly 30 offers.

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JORDAN BATTLE

DB, 6-1, 187, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla./St. Thomas Aquinas

Joins the Crimson Tide as one of the nation’s top-rated safeties from the talent-rich state of Florida … a four-star prospect by all major recruiting outlets … No. 123 on the ESPN300 and the No. 5 safety by ESPN.com … 247Sports rates him as the No. 4 safety nationally and the eighth-ranked player in the Sunshine State … the No. 6 safety in the nation and No. 10 player his home state on the 247Composite … Rivals.com lists him as the No. 12 safety and 17th overall prospect out of Florida … selected to the Under Armour All-America Game roster … participated in Nike’s “The Opening” Finals in Frisco, Texas, in 2018 … recorded 27 tackles, including one for loss, with a sack and three interceptions as a senior … a two-sport athlete who also participated in basketball for the Raiders … attended St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., where he was coached by Roger Harriott … chose Alabama over Miami, Ohio State and Oklahoma.

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JAHLEEL BILLINGSLEY

TE, 6-4, 216, Chicago, Ill./Phillips Academy

One of the top athletes at tight end in this year’s recruiting cycle … a four-star prospect by all four major outlets who possesses size and speed to go with overall athleticism … the No. 7 tight end nationally and third-ranked player from Illinois by Rivals.com … rated as the No. 4 player in Illinois on the 247Composite and by 247Sports … the No. 10 tight end in the nation on the Composite and the 13th-rated player at his position by 247Sports … ranked the No. 11 tight end in the nation to go with a No. 35 ranking in the Midwest Region and the No. 6 prospect from Illinois by ESPN.com … a four-star prospect and a Top 350 All-American by PrepStar … participated in Nike’s “The Opening” Finals in Frisco, Texas, in 2018 … helped lead Phillips Academy to the Class 5A state championship as a junior and the Class 6A state quarterfinals a year later … multi-sport athlete who also participated in basketball for the Wildcats … first player from Illinois signed by the Crimson Tide since 1997 … coached by Troy McAllister at Phillips Academy in Chicago, Ill. … chose Alabama over Auburn, Florida, LSU, Michigan and Ohio State.

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TANNER BOWLES

OL, 6-5, 280, Glasgow, Ky./Glasgow

Ranked as one the top offensive guards in the 2019 class … tabbed as a four-star prospect by ESPN and 247Sports … one of the top players in the state of Kentucky … 247Sports ranks him as the No. 175 player nationally and the 10th-rated offensive guard … ranked as the No. 24 offensive tackle, the 228th-rated player on the ESPN300 and the third-ranked player in Kentucky … the No. 287 player nationally on the 247Composite to go with the No. 17 offensive guard and No. 5 player in Kentucky … Rivals.com rates him as the No. 10 player in Kentucky … a four-star player and No. 251 on the PrepStar Top 350 All-America Team … ranks as PrepStar’s No. 27 offensive tackle and the fourth-ranked player in Kentucky …played on the Kentucky squad in the 2018 Best of the Bluegrass All-State Game … second team all-state selection across all classes as a junior in 2017 by the Kentucky high school coaches … played at Glasgow High School where he was coached by Jeff Garmon … chose Alabama over Florida State, Georgia, Kentucky, LSU and Louisville.

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JEFFERY CARTER

DB, 6-0, 186, Mansfield, Texas/Mansfield Legacy

One of the top defensive back prospects in this year’s recruiting cycle … unanimous four-star selection by the major recruiting services rated as the No. 37 player nationally in the ESPN 300 … ESPN.com ranks him as the no. 4 cornerback and the No. 7 player in Texas … the 29th rated player nationally and the third-ranked cornerback by 247Sports, which also rated him the No. 5 player in the Lone Star State … 247Composite’s No. 11 cornerback and No. 91 player nationally along with its 17th-rated player in the state … PrepStar lists him as its No. 62 player in the country, No. 6 corner and the No. 10 player in Texas … the No. 48 cornerback nationally and the No. 53 player in Texas by Rivals.com … selected to play in the Under Armour All-American Game … coached by Chris Melson at Mansfield Legacy in Mansfield, Texas … chose Alabama over Oklahoma, Oregon and Texas A&M.

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DARRIAN DALCOURT

OL, 6-3, 290, Baltimore, Md./St. Frances

Another of the top-rated offensive linemen in the 2019 recruiting cycle … tabbed as a consensus four-star offensive guard or center and one of the top players in the state of Maryland … Rivals.com rates him as the No. 3 center in the nation and the No. 4 player in Maryland … ranked as the No. 20 offensive guard and the No. 10 player in the state by ESPN.com … the 247Composite ranks him as the 332nd player nationally and the No. 19 offensive guard … the Composite also has him ranked as the No. 8 player in the state of Maryland … 247Sports Top 247 ranks him 330th nationally and as the No. 21 offensive guard … a four-star prospect by PrepStar and a Top 350 All-American by the publication … ranks as PrepStar’s No. 17 offensive guard and the fourth-ranked player in Maryland … selected to play in the Under Armour All-American Game … the anchor of the offensive line at state champion St. Frances Academy … coached by Biff Poggi at SFA … chose Alabama over Clemson, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State.

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DJ DALE

DT, 6-3, 323, Pinson, Ala./Clay-Chalkville

A powerful tackle on the defensive side of the ball who posses size and speed in the middle … four-star prospect by 247Sports, ESPN.com and on the 247Composite … tabbed as a three-star tackle by Rivals.com … the No. 15 defensive tackle and No. 9 player in Alabama on the 247Composite … rated the No. 16 defensive tackle and 11th-ranked prospect in the state by 247Sports … tabbed as the No. 181 prep player on the ESPN300 … listed as the No. 14 defensive tackle and No. 9 player in Alabama by ESPN.com … a four-star prospect and a Top 350 All-American by PrepStar … participated in Nike’s “The Opening” regionals in Buford, Ga. … collected 38 tackles, including 14 for loss, as a junior on his way to Class 6A First Team All-State honors from the Alabama Sports Writers Association (ASWA) … coached by Jerry Hood at Clay-Chalkville High School in Pinson, Ala. … joins the Crimson Tide after receiving offers from Auburn, Clemson, Florida State and Tennessee among others.

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JUSTIN EBIOGBE

LB, 6-5, 263, Forest Park, Ga./Forest Park

A highly-regarded defensive end prospect and one of the top players in the state of Georgia … tabbed as a consensus four-star defensive end and one of the best players at any position in the state of Georgia … rated as the No. 5 strongside defensive end prospect and the No. 75 player on the 247Composite … 247Sports ranks him as the No. 53 player nationally, the fifth-rated strongside defensive end and the No. 9 player in his state … ranked 73rd on the ESPN300 and the outlet’s No. 8 defensive end nationally … ESPN.com also rates him as the No. 9 player in Georgia … ranked 161st nationally by Rivals.com and the No. 15 strongside defensive end … a four-star prospect and the No. 67 player on the PrepStar Top 150 Dream Team … ranks as PrepStar’s No. 7 defensive end and the ninth-rated prospect in Georgia … selected to play in the Under Armour All-American Game … coached by Martez Edwards at Forest Park High School in Forest Park, Ga. … chose Alabama over Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Miami and Tennessee.

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CHRISTIAN HARRIS

LB, 6-2, 239, Baton Rouge, La./University Lab

Versatile player who saw time on offense, defense and special teams as a prep standout … four-star selection by all major recruiting services … ranked the No. 5 player in Louisiana by both ESPN.com and PrepStar … ESPN ranks him as the No. 7 athlete and No. 81 player nationally while PrepStar rates him as the No. 8 linebacker and the 118th player overall … the No. 11 player in the state and 13th-ranked outside linebacker by Rivals.com … listed as the No. 8 player in Louisiana and the 10th-rated inside linebacker by 247Sports … the No. 10 player in Louisiana and ninth-ranked inside linebacker in the class on the 247Composite … selected to play in the All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Texas … participated in the Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge … played wide receiver, safety and returned kicks for University Lab’s back-to-back state championship teams in 2017 and 2018 … helped the Cubs to 26 consecutive wins over his junior and senior seasons … coached by Chad Mahaffey at University Lab School in Baton Rouge, La. … chose Alabama over Auburn, Arkansas, LSU and Texas A&M among others.

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KEVIN HARRIS II

DE, 6-4, 228, Loganville, Ga./Grayson

One of the top defensive ends in the country in this recruiting cycle … unanimous four-star selection by all major recruiting services … the nation’s no. 70 player per PrepStar, which ranks him as the No. 8 defensive end and the No. 10 player in Georgia … listed as the No. 5 weakside defensive end on the 247Composite and by 247Sports … the 10th-ranked weakside defensive end and No. 22 player from Georgia by Rivals.com … ESPN.com tabbed him as the No. 11 defensive end and the No. 13 player in the state … selected to play in the Under Armour All-American Game … participated in Nike’s “The Opening” Finals in Frisco, Texas, in 2018 … coached by Christian Hunnicutt at Grayson High School in Loganville, Ga. … chose Alabama over Arkansas, Auburn, Clemson and Miami.

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DeMARCCO HELLAMS

DB, 6-1, 203, Hyattsville, Md./DeMatha Catholic

One of the top players in Maryland in this recruiting cycle out of DeMatha Catholic … versatile athlete who starred on both sides of the ball as a senior … unanimous four-star recruit and the No. 3 player in Maryland by all major recruiting services … 247Composite rates him as the No. 7 safety, while 247Sports lists him as its 12th-rated safety … tabbed the No. 8 athlete and the No. 79 player nationally by Rivals.com … listed as the No. 129 prospect on the ESPN300 … ranked as the No. 12 athlete by ESPN.com … rated 71st nationally by PrepStar, which ranks him as its No. 5 athlete … participated in Nike’s “The Opening” Finals in Frisco, Texas, in 2018 … earned Washington Post Metro Offensive Player of the Year honors after catching 78 passes for 1,469 yards and 21 touchdowns as a senior … recorded 12 interceptions – three of which he returned for touchdowns – along with 91 tackles at defensive back … contributed two touchdowns, two interceptions and a blocked punt for a safety in DeMatha’s WCAC semifinal victory to help the Stags reach the WCAC championship game … coached by Elijah Brooks at DeMatha Catholic … chose Alabama over Clemson, Kentucky, Louisville and Maryland.

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BRAYLEN INGRAHAM

DE, 6-4, 260, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla./St. Thomas Aquinas

One of the top defensive end prospects in the talent-rich state of Florida in this recruiting cycle … consensus four-star prospect by all major recruiting services … 247Sports rates him the No. 19 player in the Sunshine State and the 13th-ranked strongside defensive end … listed as the No. 27 player in Florida and the No. 14 strongside end on the 247Composite … Rivals.com ranks him as the No. 26 player in the state and the No. 24 strongside end … rated No. 204 in the ESPN300 … tabbed as the No. 33 player in Florida and the 24th-rated defensive end in the class by ESPN.com … listed as PrepStar’s No. 33 player in the state as well as the No. 26 defensive end … coached by Roger Harriott at St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. … chose Alabama over Auburn, Kentucky, Oklahoma and Oregon.

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AMARI KIGHT

OL, 6-7, 307, Alabaster, Ala./Thompson

One of the top-rated offensive linemen in the 2019 recruiting cycle … tabbed as a consensus four-star offensive tackle and one of the top players in the state of Alabama … rated as the No. 9 offensive tackle and the No. 46 player on the ESPN300 by ESPN.com … ESPN lists him as the third-ranked player in Alabama … the 52nd-ranked player, No. 8 offensive tackle and No. 5 player in Alabama on the 247Composite … 247Sports ranks him as the No. 91 player nationally and the 13th-rated offensive tackle … Rivals.com lists him as the No. 65 player in the country and the No. 10 offensive tackle … a five-star prep standout and the No. 44 prospect on the PrepStar Top 150 Dream Team … ranks as PrepStar’s No. 9 offensive tackle and the fourth-ranked player in Alabama … selected to play in the Under Armour All-American Game … the anchor of the offensive line at Thompson High School that helped the Warriors finish runner-up in Class 7A in the state of Alabama … played in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game … earned First Team All-State recognition as a junior in 2017 by the Alabama Sports Writers Association (ASWA) … coached by Mark Freeman at Thompson … chose Alabama over Auburn, LSU, Georgia, Michigan, Notre Dame, Oklahoma and Texas A&M.

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SHANE LEE

LB, 6-0, 243, Baltimore, Md./St. Frances Academy

Consensus four-star prospect and one of the top inside linebacker prospects in the 2019 recruiting cycle … rated the No. 1 player in Maryland by 247Composite, Rivals.com and ESPN.com … tabbed the No. 2 player in the state by PrepStar and No. 5 by 247Sports … the top-rated inside linebacker nationally by ESPN.com and its No. 17 player overall on the ESPN300 … rated as the No. 2 inside backer by Rivals.com and PrepStar … ranked No. 46 nationally by Rivals.com while PrepStar rates him 58th … participated in Nike’s “The Opening” Finals in Frisco, Texas, in 2018 … coached by Biff Poggi at St. Frances Academy in Baltimore, Md. … chose Alabama over Clemson, LSU, Michigan, Notre Dame and Ohio State.

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JOHN METCHIE

WR, 6-0, 195, Hightstown, N.J./The Peddie School

Elite athlete at wide receiver who burst onto the scene late in the recruiting cycle … earned four-star rankings across the board … the 16th-ranked athlete and No. 4 overall prep prospect in New Jersey by Rivals.com … the Garden State’s fifth-rated player by both 247Sports and on the 247Composite … ranked by ESPN.com as the No. 36 player in the East Region and No. 7 player from New Jersey … a four-star prospect and a Top 350 All-American by PrepStar … born in Taiwan before moving to Ghana and eventually to Canada from the age of six until high school … traveled to the states to attend St. James School in Hagerstown, Md., before transferring to The Peddie School for his final prep season … recorded more than 1,300 rushing yards, 2,500 receiving yards and 42 touchdowns across his four seasons at St. James … played under Christopher Malleo at The Peddie School in Hightstown, N.J. … selected the Crimson Tide over Georgia, Maryland and Penn State among others.

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KING MWIKUTA

DE, 6-5, 240, West Point, Ga./Troup County

Unanimous four-star selection by the major recruiting services … listed as the No. 9 weakside defensive end by 247Sports and on the 247Composite … the Composite ranks him as the No. 15 player in the state of Georgia … ranked the No. 10 weakside defensive end and the No. 23 player in Georgia by Rivals.com … the No, 202 prospect on the ESPN 300 … listed as the No. 23 defensive end and No. 24 player in the state of Georgia by ESPN.com … the 10th-ranked outside linebacker by Rivals.com, which rates him as the No. 23 player in his home state … PrepStar’s No. 9 linebacker and the No. 24 player in Georgia … selected to play in the Under Armour All-American Game … coached by Tanner Glisson at Troup County High School in West Point, Ga. … chose Alabama over Auburn, Florida, Florida State and Georgia.

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EVAN NEAL

OL, 6-7, 360, Okeechobee, Fla./IMG Academy

An elite offensive tackle prospect and one of the top players at any position in the nation … tabbed as a five-star offensive tackle by 247Sports and Rivals.com and one of the top players in the state of Florida … rated as the No. 2 offensive tackle and the No. 11 player in the nation on the Rivals 100 … Rivals.com also ranks him as the third-best player in Florida … the 20th-ranked player, No. 5 offensive tackle and No. 3 player in Florida on the 247Composite … the No. 34 player nationally and the fourth-rated offensive tackle in the country by 247Sports … a four-star prospect and the No. 36 player in the ESPN300 … rated as the No. 8 offensive tackle and fourth-ranked player in Florida by ESPN.com … selected to play in the Under Armour All-American Game … the anchor of the offensive line at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. … coached by Kevin Wright at IMG … chose Alabama over Florida State, Georgia, Miami and Oklahoma.

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PIERCE QUICK

OL, 6-5, 285, Trussville, Ala./Hewitt-Trussville

One of the top-rated offensive linemen in the 2019 recruiting cycle … first team USA Today All-American as a junior in 2017 … tabbed as a five-star offensive tackle and the top player in the state of Alabama by ESPN.com … rated as the No. 2 offensive tackle and the No. 4 player on the ESPN300 by ESPN.com … the 35th-ranked player, No. 6 offensive tackle and No. 2 player in the state of Alabama on the 247Composite … 247Sports ranks him as the No. 67 player nationally and the ninth-rated offensive tackle … Rivals.com rates him the No. 62 player in the country, the No. 9 offensive tackle and the No. 4 prospect in Alabama … a five-star recruit by PrepStar and the No. 2 offensive tackle prospect nationally … ranks No. 5 on PrepStar’s Top 150 Dream Team and the top player in Alabama by the same outlet … … selected to play in the Under Armour All-America Game … participated in Nike’s “The Opening” Finals in Frisco, Texas, in 2018 … …the anchor of an offensive line at Hewitt-Trussville High School where he was teammates with fellow Alabama signee Paul Tyson … earned First Team All-State accolades as a junior from the Alabama Sports Writers Association (ASWA) … coached by Josh Floyd at Hewitt-Trussville … chose Alabama over many of the top programs in the nation, including Auburn, Clemson, Georgia, LSU, Michigan and Oklahoma.

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WILL REICHARD

PK, 6-1, 185, Hoover, Ala./Hoover

The nation’s top kicker by ESPN.com, Rivals.com and on the 247Composite … ranked as the No. 2 kicking prospect by 247Sports … rated as the top combination kicker/punter in the nation for the Kohl’s Kicking Class of 2019 … earned the distinction of the top combination athlete at the elite camp where he was selected as the top kicker and No. 2 punter … selected to the Under Armour All-American Game roster as a senior … participated in the 2018 Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic … made 27 of his 31 career field goals and went a perfect 109-of-109 on PATs for Hoover … recorded a touchback on 186 of his 188 career kickoffs for the Bucs as well … coached by Josh Niblett at Hoover High School … selected Alabama over Auburn, Georgia, LSU, Oklahoma and Oregon.

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TAULIA TAGOVAILOA

QB, 5-11, 203, Alabaster, Ala./Thompson

Travels down the road from Alabaster to Tuscaloosa … one of the top-rated quarterbacks in this year’s recruiting cycle … a unanimous four-star prospect by all major recruiting sites … rated as the No. 4 pro-style quarterback by 247Sports and the sixth-rated prospect in Alabama … tabbed the No. 4 dual-threat quarterback and seventh-rated player in Alabama by Rivals.com … 247Composite lists him as the No. 5 pro-style quarterback and No. 110 prospect nationally … the No. 174 player on the ESPN300 … rated as the No. 9 dual-threat signal-caller and seventh-rated prospect overall by ESPN.com … a four-star prospect by PrepStar and the No. 4 quarterback nationally … listed as one of the PrepStar Top 150 Dream Teamers … participated in Nike’s “The Opening” 2018 Finals in Frisco, Texas … selected to play in the Polynesian Bowl in Hawaii while also being selected by the Bowl as one of its finalists for the 2018 High School Player of the Year award … earned a spot in the 2018 All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Texas … selected to play in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic … threw for 3,728 yards and 35 touchdowns as a senior at Thompson … rewrote the Alabama high school record books, becoming the only quarterback in state history to have at least four 400-yard passing performances in his career … became the 10th player in Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) history to throw for 500 yards in a game with his 507-yard, four-touchdown performance against Oak Mountain … led the Warriors to the Class 7A state championship in 2018 … selected to the Class 7A All-State first team in 2017 by the Alabama Sports Writers Association (ASWA) … brother of current Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa … coached by Mark Freeman at Thompson High School in Alabaster, Ala. … chose Alabama over Florida, LSU and Tennessee.

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BRANDON TURNAGE

DB, 6-1, 185, Oxford, Miss./Lafayette

One of the top players in the state of Mississippi in the 2019 recruiting cycle … PrepStar ranks him the No. 2 player in the state and the eighth-ranked defensive back while listing him as the No. 66 player nationally … the No. 66 prospect on the ESPN300 … ESPN.com tabbed him the No. 4 player in the Magnolia State and the No. 6 cornerback …  the seventh-ranked player in Mississippi and No. 12 cornerback in the country on the 247Composite … 247Sports ranks him as the No. 8 player in the state and the No. 13 cornerback … Rivals.com’s No. 8 player in Mississippi and its No. 17 cornerback … selected to play in the Under Armour All-American Game, becoming the first player from his school to receive that honor … coached by Michael Fair at Lafayette High School in Oxford, Miss. … chose Alabama over Auburn, Florida, Georgia and Ole Miss.

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PAUL TYSON

QB, 6-5, 217, Trussville, Ala./Hewitt-Trussville

Signal-caller with good size and exceptional arm talent … pocket passer who is rated as a four-star prospect in the latest recruiting cycle … the No. 7 pro-style quarterback and 12th-rated player from the state of Alabama by 247Sports … ranked as the No. 8 pro-style signal-caller and 10th overall player in Alabama on the 247Composite … Rivals.com lists him as the No. 10 pro-style quarterback and  No. 11 prospect in the state … the No. 223 player on the ESPN 300 … rated as the No. 11 pocket passer nationally and 11th-ranked prospect in Alabama by ESPN.com … a four-star prospect and a Top 350 All-American by PrepStar … finished his career at HTHS with a 19-5 record as a starter … threw for more than 6,500 yards and 69 touchdowns with only 13 interceptions in his 24 games as a starter for the Huskies … selected to the Class 7A All-State first team in 2017 by the Alabama Sports Writers Association (ASWA) … great grandson of Paul W. “Bear” Bryant … high school teammates with fellow Crimson Tide commit Pierce Quick … attended Hewitt-Trussville High School in Trussville, Ala., where he was coached by Josh Floyd … selected Alabama over Arkansas, Duke and Kentucky.

Nick Saban a Finalist for the Paul “Bear” Bryant Coach of the Year Award

12-31-17 MFB Sugar Bowl Head Coach Press Conference Nick Saban Photo by Kent Gidley

Alabama head coach one of seven candidates for national coach of the year honors

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Alabama head coach Nick Saban is one of seven finalists for the Paul “Bear” Bryant Coach of the Year Award, the American Heart Association and title sponsor Marathon Oil announced Wednesday.

Saban, who won the Bryant Award in 2003, has led the Crimson Tide to a 13-0 record, the school’s 27th Southeastern Conference championship and the No. 1 seed in the upcoming College Football Playoff this season. The Crimson Tide has reached the 13-win mark for the fourth year in a row and the sixth time in Saban’s tenure at UA. Alabama is also making its fifth CFP appearance this season and is the only school to appear in every edition of the playoff.

Saban is joined as a finalist by UAB’s Bill Clark, Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly, UCF’s Josh Heupel, Army’s Jeff Monken, Clemson’s Dabo Swinney and Fresno State’s Jeff Tedford.

The winner of the 2018 Bryant Award will be announced Jan. 9, 2019 at the 33rd annual Paul
“Bear” Bryant Awards dinner in Houston, Texas.