Alabama had to replace 7 out of 11 starters on offense in 2009. They will have to do the same on defense in 2010. Maybe even more.
Conventional wisdom would have you believe that the loss of 2 All American offensive lineman, your starting quarterback, and running back would result in struggling offensively in the following year. That didn’t happen in 2009. In fact, the Crimson Tide was better in nearly every offensive statistical category.
Will that be the case for the defense in 2010? Who knows? But you can’t blame the talent, that is for certain. Over the past couple years, Nick Saban has been loading up with the best recruits in the country. Many of those on the defensive side of the ball.
Everyone knows that Nick Saban says “there is no depth chart”, but one can speculate if he did, the first group would look like this next season:
Defensive End: Jr Luther Davis
Nose Tackle: Jr Josh Chapman
Defensive End: Jr Marcel Dareus
Linebacker: *So Nico Johnson
Linebacker: *Sr Rolando Mcclain (Jerrel Harris)
Linebacker: *Jr Donta Hightower
Linebacker: Jr Courtney Upshaw
Cornerback: *Sr Kareem Jackson
Safety: *Jr Mark Barron
Safety: Jr Robby Green
Cornerback: So Dre Kirkpatrick
* Retrurning Starter from 2009
If you believe in star ratings by the numerous recruiting websites, this may be the most talented defense ever fielded at the University of Alabama. Plus, everyone of these players with the exception of Kirkpatrick either started or saw significant playing time in 2009.
Now, nobody knows how this group will perform in 2010, but most coaches would be fairly confident taking the field with these players in the lineup.