Aug. 5, 2011
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -
The Alabama football team began its 2011 fall training slate with a split practice at the Drew-Thomas Practice Facility on Friday morning.
"We are certainly excited about getting started and having our team back here," Alabama head coach Nick Saban said. "The outcome of this season is going to be created by what our players do. What we do, not what we can do, is what it is all going to come down to. Everyone will benefit from the team's success, but every individual will be responsible for what they are supposed to do. That will help develop the team chemistry, the team attitude and the team success."
The first of 29 practice sessions before the season opener on September 3 opened at 9:30 a.m. Friday with a two-hour workout that included mostly veterans in shorts and helmets. The remaining members of the team will meet for a two-hour practice that is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m.
"I think today's practice went pretty good," senior nose guard Josh Chapman said. "Guys came out hard for the first day, and I have seen a lot of improvement on the line, now and throughout the summer. We try to work hard and be the best defensive line we can be."
Chapman, a preseason first-team All-SEC selection, is one of 10 returning starters on the Alabama defense. Among those returnees anchoring the Crimson Tide defense are All-American safeties Mark Barron and Robert Lester along with preseason All-SEC linebackers Dont'a Hightower and Courtney Upshaw.
Alabama will hold its first combined practice of 2011 on Saturday. The veterans and newcomers are slated to work out together at 2:30 p.m. at the Drew-Thomas Practice Facility.
The Tide's annual Fan Day will take place on Sunday, August 7, at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Fan Day will start with an open practice from 2:30-4:30 p.m. Following practice, student-athletes and coaches will be available for autographs during a 45-minute session on the field. Fans may enter the stadium beginning at 1:30 p.m. through northwest spiral Gate 5 (closest to Wallace Wade Ave.) The line for the autograph session will start at Gate 46.