Countdown to Kickoff
Alabama Football Opens Fall Camp


Monday, August 08, 2005

The University of Alabama football team welcomed 105 players to campus today as fall camp officially began with compliance issues, testing and orientation.  The Crimson Tide football team will hit the practice field for the first time on Tuesday, Aug. 9 at 3:15 p.m. and will continue preseason camp until classes begin Wednesday, Aug. 24.  The first four days of practice will be in helmets, shoulder pads and shorts.  The first day of pads allowed by NCAA rule is Saturday, Aug. 13.  Alabama will then begin two-a-days on Sunday, Aug. 14.  According to NCAA legislation, teams may not conduct two-a-days in consecutive calendar days.  The Crimson Tide's two-a-days will be held on August 14, 16, 18, 20 and 22.  The team will practice once each day on August 15, 17, 19, 21 and 23.  Alabama is also slated to hold three preseason scrimmages at Bryant-Denny Stadium.  The dates of the scrimmages are Monday, Aug. 15, Saturday, Aug. 20 and Tuesday, Aug. 23. 

Coach Mike Shula (10-15, .400) begins his third season as head coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide.   Shula guided the Crimson Tide to a 6-6 record last season and a berth in the 2004 Gaylord Hotels Music City Bowl presented by Bridgestone, despite losing his entire starting backfield.  Shula led Alabama to a 4-9 record in his rookie season in 2003, despite taking the job just 114 days before the start of the season and without a spring practice session.  He previously served as an assistant coach in the NFL with Tampa Bay, Chicago and Miami.  A three-year letterman at Alabama (1984-86), Shula was a two-time All-SEC selection and threw for over 2,000 yards as a junior (1985), leading the Crimson Tide to dramatic come-from-behind wins over Georgia and Auburn. 

The 2005 season marks the 111th season of Crimson Tide football ... Bama has compiled a 764-299-43 (.710) record in 1,106 all-time games ... Alabama opens the 2005 season ranked 24th in the preseason USA Today Coaches poll released last week ...  Alabama has 14 players on various preseason All-America and All-SEC squads ... An additional six players are on preseason watch lists for various national awards  ...  Alabama returns 16 starters off last year's team, including seven on offense and nine on defense ... The Alabama starting secondary has combined for 99 career starts and 199 career tackles at Alabama ... Senior safety Charlie Peprah has the most starts of any player on the UA team with 33 starts for the Tide ... Senior linebacker Freddie Roach is second on the team with 28 career starts ... Senior cornerback Anthony Madison is next with 27 starts ... Senior center JB Closner leads all offensive players with 24 career starts ... Alabama opens the season with Middle Tennessee ... The Blue Raiders are picked third in the Sun Belt Conference ... Clint Marks is the Sun Belt Conference's preseason first-team quarterback ... Southern Miss is picked to win the Conference USA Western Division, while Utah State was tabbed eighth in the Western Athletic Conference ...

Eryk Anders signed with Alabama the last week in July and will report to camp today.  Here is a bio for the incoming freshman.

Eryk Anders, LB
6-2 * 215 * San Antonio, Texas
Smithson Valley HS

PREP: A standout defensive lineman/linebacker at Smithson Valley (Texas) High School, where he was named to the Class 5A Texas all-state team by the Associated Press ... As a senior, he had 118 tackles, 43 TFLs and 16 sacks, with four forced fumbles, four pass breakups and two blocked kicks that included a touchdown ... He helped the Rangers reached the Class 5A state championship game ... The Rangers were 13-3 last season.


*Alabama announced the 105-man reporting roster for football today as fall camp begins on Tuesday.

*There are 63 upper classmen on the 2005 football roster, including 21 seniors, 20 juniors and 22 sophomores.

*The roster also contains 30 true freshmen, including walk-ons, and 12 redshirt freshmen.

*The 42 freshmen and redshirt freshmen makes up 40 percent of the Crimson Tide's roster.


*There are three number changes on the UA roster as camp opens on Tuesday. 

*The most notable change is sophomore cornerback Simeon Castille (Birmingham), who switched from No. 3 to No. 2.

*True freshman cornerback Lionel Mitchell (Stone Mountain, Ga.) switched from No. 7 to No. 16.

*Junior free safety Jeffrey Dukes (Oxford, Miss.) wore No. 43 last season, but will wear No. 3 this year.

*Alabama has sold all of its season tickets for the 2005 season, marking the first time since 2000 that the Tide has sold out the entire season.

*With the on-going construction at Bryant-Denny Stadium, Alabama is looking at 2,800 less seats this season in the north end zone.  The capacity for the 2005 season will be 81,018.

*Alabama will be adding luxury boxes, a stadium club and additional seats in the north end zone, which will be completed in time for next year's season season opener with Hawai'i on Sept. 2, 2006.  The stadium's capacity will be expanded to approximately 91,000 after the completion of the latest project.

The University of Arkansas returned tickets to the Athletic Ticket Office on Monday and there are a limited number of tickets on sale of the Alabama-Arkansas game set for Saturday, Sept. 24. 

Fans may purchase tickets on-line ( or by calling (205) 348-2262 or 1-877-TIDETIX.

The Alabama football team will be featured on FSN South on Thursday, Aug. 11 at 9:30 p.m.  (CT). The FSN South preview will offer a 30-minute preview of the Crimson Tide's football season, including interviews, highlights and analysis.  FSN reporters Beau Estes and Jenn Hildreth host the preview show and commentary and analysis are provided by veteran football reporter Paul Crane, Bob Fiscella and the College Football Editor of the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Tony Barnhart.  The show will re-air on Sunday, Aug. 21 at 2 p.m. (CT).

*The University of Alabama football team has six different players on the various preseason watch lists for national football honors this season.

*Senior defensive back Roman Harper and senior linebacker DeMeco Ryans headline the list of college football awards.

*Harper is on the preseason watch list for the Bednarik Award (outstanding defensive player), Nagurski Award (defensive player of the year) and Thorpe Award (outstanding defensive back).

*Ryans is being considered for the Bednarik Award, Nagurski Trophy and the Lott Trophy (defensive impact player of the year).

2005 Alabama Football Preseason Watch List

Chuck Bednarik Award (Outstanding Defensive Player):
Roman Harper and DeMeco Ryans

Ted Hendricks Award (Top Defensive End):
Wallace Gilberry

Bronco Nagurski Trophy (Defensive Player of Year):
Roman Harper and DeMeco Ryans

Maxwell Award (College Player of the Year):
Brodie Croyle

Outland Trophy (Top Interior Lineman):
JB Closner

Jim Thorpe Award (Top Defensive Back):
Roman Harper and Charlie Peprah

Ronnie Lott Trophy (Def. Impact Player of Year):
DeMeco Ryans