Alabama Football: What You Need to Know About Crimson Tide TE Michael Williams

Jonathan McDanalContributor IIIAugust 9, 2012

TUSCALOOSA, AL - SEPTEMBER 24:  Michael Williams #89 of the Alabama Crimson Tide against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Bryant-Denny Stadium on September 24, 2011 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Michael Williams has been a starting tight end for the Tide since 2010. In 2011, he logged only three games with zero receptions: Kent State, Vanderbilt and Georgia Southern (via

Throughout his career at the Capstone, he's hauled in 27 passes for 320 yards. Williams has been effective with or without the ball.

Without the ball, he's a great blocker and a great decoy. The opposition can't let its guard down against Williams, or he'll just reel off a 24-yard touchdown catch like he did against Penn State in 2011.

He will be taking the field with the nation's best offensive line in 2012, and his stats should rise accordingly. With the Tide's new receiving corps, Williams will have a lot less pressure to perform. He will be less of a decoy and more of a dark-horse superstar from the tight end position.

Williams will be an integral part of the 2012 offense, and is on the preseason watch list for the John Mackey Award, which is given to the nation's best tight end. (Bonus "Countdown to Kickoff" timer in that link to

If you want a great example of what to expect from Williams this year, his touchdown against Arkansas is a great example. Williams is an explosive player who knows all aspects of his job very well.

The tight end's receiving function will be utilized even more in 2012, too. (As of roughly 8 p.m. ET on Aug 9, 2012, Chris Black will not be a factor in defending 'Bama's national championship from 2011.)

During Alabama's turn on SEC Media Days, Williams was asked what it was like to work for Nick Saban.

His response? "Sixty percent business, 40 percent fun."

That bodes well for the Tide. Anyone who finds the grueling training regimen posed by Nick Saban and Scott Cochran fun, is going to be a beast on the field (even if it's only "40 percent fun").

Roughly translated to civilian English, that means, "Pain is fun." What everyone from Michigan to Auburn is about to experience is Williams having fun at their expense. Roll Tide!