Nick Saban announced that Chris Black will require surgery on his injured shoulder and will likely be out for three to four months. As a true freshman in 2012, this turn of events almost ensures a redshirt for Black.
Black is a 5'11", 178-pound speedster at wideout and looks to become a true downfield threat for the Tide in coming years.
Losing the former 4-star receiver is certainly a blow to Alabama's depth, but the overall impact it will have on the team will be largely negligible.
As great as Black is, Alabama's wide receiver corps is completely stacked with talent. Kenny Bell, Kevin Norwood, DeAndrew White and Christion Jones will get the majority of reps during game time.
This will be the second year in a row that Alabama has lost a highly-touted true freshman to the injury bug before the season even began. Last year it was running back Demetrius Hart with a torn ACL.
Black's injury is going to increase the opportunities for two specific players that will be competing for playing time, likely as backups.
Redshirt freshman Danny Woodson, Jr. and true freshman Amari Cooper, both former 4-star rated wideouts, will be getting more opportunities this season.
The injury to Black may also make it easier for Nick Saban to fully decide where to play 5-star athlete Eddie Williams.
Williams has a blue chip build to play both wide receiver and safety.
I had projected Williams to play wideout from the get-go because of the massive talent at safety, which includes Ha'Sean Clinton-Dix and Landon Collins, both of whom were 5-star rated prospects .Vinnie Sunseri is also playing like a 5-star safety as well, possibly even better than Clinton-Dix.