August 22, 2013

Thursday marked another milestone for the Alabama football team as it took a step closer to its season opener against Virginia Tech in the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Classic. The Crimson Tide for the first time in training camp dove in game preparations for the Hokies.

The practice was the 22nd of fall camp for the Crimson Tide. Alabama will continue preparations on Friday and Saturday and then take Sunday off before diving into the first game week of the season.

Earlier in the day Alabama had 16 players land on the Preseason Coaches All-SEC team, the league announced Thursday morning.

The Crimson Tide has nine players named to three teams on the defensive side of the football, six on offense and one on special teams. Alabama has five players on the first team, seven on the second team and four on the third team.

Sophomores T.J. Yeldon (running back) and Amari Cooper (receiver) were selected to the first team on offense along with left tackle Cyrus Kouandjio. Senior linebacker C.J. Mosley and junior safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix were first-team selections on defense.

The Tide had five players named to the second-team defense with Ed Stinson, Jeoffrey Pagan and Xzavier Dickson representing the defensive line with Adrian Hubbard at linebacker and Deion Belue at cornerback. Senior guard Anthony Steen was the first offensive lineman on the second team. Senior punter Cody Mandell, coming off of a school-record 44.3-yard average last year, was also tabbed to the second team.

Senior AJ McCarron was chosen to the third team after throwing 30 touchdowns and just three interceptions in 2012. McCarron, a two-time national champion quarterback, is joined on the third offensive unit by junior tight end Brian Vogler. Junior linebacker Trey Depriest and junior safety Vinnie Sunseri were third-team choices on defense.

Alabama opens the season on Saturday, Aug. 31, at the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Classic inside Atlanta's Georgia Dome at 4:30 p.m. on ESPN.

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