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William Vlachos and Trent Richardson celebrate.
William Vlachos was one of those sleeper projects. You know the guys, the ones that look just good enough to play, that may become stars, but seem bench-bound for most of their careers?
Well, Vlachos turned out to be the sort that turns into a star. Since his redshirt sophomore year, William has anchored the Tide's offensive line and has become one of the most valuable centers in all of college football.
Despite his recent, uncharacteristic streak of holding calls in 2011, he is about as reliable as they come. He doesn't mess up snaps and he doesn't whiff on blocks. Most importantly, he is the unquestioned leader of the offensive line.
Some folks are quick to point out how short he is, and how little he weighs. Vlachos may weigh under 300 lbs., but when he came to Alabama he weighed a lot less and had a lot more body fat. He carried around a veritable beer keg on his midsection.
Now, the "Battle Dwarf" still carries around a sizable paunch, but he weighs more and is one of the strongest members on the team, rivaled only by nose guard Josh Chapman, though right guard Anthony Steen is closing fast.
William Vlachos has been in the Rimington Trophy talks since the 2009 season, and 2011 just might be the year he wins it.
Even if he doesn't, William has proven his worth for five years now, and will be moving onto greater things in the NFL.
William Vlachos is home-grown Alabama power, and attended high school at Mountain Brook, a suburb of Birmingham.