Alabama QB shows off intense offseason workouts
Holding a plank while getting repeatedly punched in the stomach may not sound like something that would be beneficial for a college quarterback, but Alabama’s Cooper Bateman is trying everything he can to win the starting job for the Crimson Tide in 2016.
That includes working with Tom Brady’s trainer, Alex Guerrero, who was the one punching Bateman in the stomach, according to an al.com story:
“Afterwards, Cooper was like, ‘What the hell was that?'” Bateman’s mentor, Scott Cate, said. “And I was like, ‘Hey, that’s what Brady does.'”
It’s part of Bateman’s quest to win the Tide’s starting quarterback job. The current favorite in Alabama’s quarterback competition, Bateman spent his summer break working with a combination of Cate, Utah-based trainer Matt Martinez and Brady’s team in Massachusetts.
Cate, a former Utah quarterback, and Martinez, a former Utes linebacker, have been working with Bateman in Utah and Massachusetts over the summer.
After losing the starting job to Jacob Coker last year, Bateman doesn’t want to have another letdown this year as he competes with David Cornwell and Blake Barnett.
Despite a shaky spring game in which he went 9-for-24, Bateman seems to be the leader in Alabama’s quarterback race, according to coach Nick Saban:
“Cooper’s done a good job,” Saban said. “He obviously has the most knowledge and experience with the offense. … I think there’s things that he needs to work on and we need to work on with him so that he can go out there and play with the kind of confidence and be the kind of leader and be the kind of decision-maker that we need at that position to play winning football, and that’s what we’ll continue to focus on.”
Bateman will also get to pick the brains of another pair of Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks before the season starts:
Bateman will have a chance to learn from two other future Hall of Fame quarterbacks, Peyton and Eli Manning, later this month when he works as an instructor at the Manning Passing Academy in Louisiana.
It’s unrealistic to expect Bateman to come out and play like Brady or the Mannings out of the gate in 2016, but if he’s learned about the dedication and desire it takes to be a top-level quarterback, the Tide have reason to be optimistic about having Bateman under center.