Alabama officially begins spring practice on March 4, and depending on when you read this, that could be today! What are some things to look for as the Crimson Tide begin their journey toward the 2024 season?

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Everybody loves to talk quarterbacks, so let's talk quarterbacks. Alabama is returning Jalen Milroe, who placed sixth in the Heisman Trophy race last season and is an early favorite for the award in 2024. This doesn't mean Alabama is going to simply hand him the job again. Coach Saban, who retired in January, talked about always competing for your job every day. We've seen Alabama in funky quarterback situations before with Tua Tagovailoa and Jalen Hurts.

Jalen Milroe is not the same as Jalen Hurts though, and Alabama doesn't (as far as we know right now) have another Tagovailoa-level passer sitting on the bench. Barring anything unforeseen, Milroe will be the starter in 2024. The real competition is who will back him up. Ty Simpson, who many thought would win the QB battle last spring, is the frontrunner to be the backup signal caller. Don't sleep on Dylan Lonergan, though. There's a lot of positive smoke around the redshirt freshman, and of course, Alabama brought in Washington transfer Austin Mack - the first transfer of the Kalen DeBoer era. Assuming all three stay, next season's quarterback battle should be just as entertaining as 2023.

Equally as important as the quarterback is the offensive line. Alabama's line struggled last season, giving up 49 sacks last season. With the departures of J.C. Latham to the NFL and Kadyn Proctor back home to Iowa, Alabama will need to replace both tackles from last season. The interior of the offensive line is pretty solid, with Tyler Booker and Jaeden Roberts returning to man the guard positions, and Parker Brailsford transferring from Washington to play center. Elijah Pritchett is one of the early favorites for an offensive tackle position, but there still will be competition for his spot and the other tackle position.

The wide receiver room has not had a 1,000-yard receiver since Jameson Williams and John Metchie III did it in 2021. JaMarcus Shephard had two at Washington last season in Rome Odunze and Ja'Lynn Polk. Alabama's room has the talent, with Jalen Hale, Kobe Prentice, and Washington transfer Germie Bernard likely leading the way through spring. Bernard was in a position to start at Washington after Odunze, Polk, and Jalen McMillan left for the NFL draft. Any of the three could have 1,000 yards this season, and that's not even mentioning five-star Ryan Williams, who will arrive on campus in the summer.

Switching sides of the ball, Alabama's front seven is losing some major production with Dallas Turner, Chris Braswell, and Justin Eboigbe heading to the NFL. It is presumed edge rusher Keon Keeley will be one of the rushers that replace Turner and Braswell, but the opposite position is still up for grabs, with Quandarrius Robinson and Keanu Koht expected to compete for it. Alabama has been known to put three pass rushers on the field for known passing situations, so don't be surprised if all three make appearances on the field this season. Along the defensive line, Alabama has an embarrassment of talent, with eight players sent to be draft-eligible at the end of the season. Jehiem Oatis, LT Overton, Tim Keenan, and Tim Smith are just a few of the names that could be seen in the rotation this season. Alabama has a lot of depth along the defensive line, and that should help them stay fresh late into the season.

The secondary is arguably the biggest position to watch this season. Alabama lost four starters from a season ago, with Malachi Moore as the only returning defensive back with SEC starting experience. He, Domani Jackson, and Keon Sabb are penciled in as starters, but that still leaves the safety position opposite of Sabb, and the cornerback position opposite of Jackson open. Young players will have to step in early in the secondary, and a couple of names to keep an eye on are cornerback Jaylen Mbakwe and safety Zavier Mincey.

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Photos from the introduction of new Alabama head coach Kalen DeBoer.

Gallery Credit: Simon Besnoy

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Alabama Men's Basketball defeated Ole Miss 103-88

Gallery Credit: Wyatt Fulton

Alabama Basketball Falls to Tennessee in SEC thriller

Photos from Alabama's March 2 matchup against Tennessee

Gallery Credit: Simon Besnoy

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