The music group War had a very popular take on summer, with a song going by the same name proclaiming: “Summertime is the best time any place,” and “Yes, it's summer. My time of year."
In Tuscaloosa, though, it’ll be a key time for numerous University of Alabama football players who are trying to either win or hold on to roles with the Crimson Tide. Although the team won’t officially be together again until camp opens in August, a lot of what happens in the fall will actually be determined by how hard the players work in June and July.
A good example is with Geno Smith, the converted cornerback who is trying to win the starting free safety job. He’s played in 25 games over the past two years, with two starts as the nickel defender, and is the leading candidate to replace All-American Ha Ha Clinton-Dix.
“Geno's had a really good spring,” Nick Saban said during a press conference last month. “He's really been active and played well at safety. I still think that sometimes he's a little bit uncertain of what to do. Sometimes he's a little bit uncertain of exactly how to do it. But that's why we'll practice, and he can study himself this summer and work on some things this summer, as well as in fall camp and hopefully we'll be able to make progress with him.
“He's certainly got the ability, and I think he can make a huge impact for us next year if we can get him feeling comfortable and confident in everything that he's expected to do.”
Here are some others who need a good summer, beginning with the most obvious selection.