Emil Ekiyor knows the Alabama offensive line needs to be better in 2022 if the Crimson Tide are going to accomplish their goal of winning a national title.

But, replacing a first-round NFL Draft talent like Evan Neal won’t be easy. Even so, Ekiyor is confident in his teammates and thinks one guy is ready to take a step forward this fall.

Speaking this week, Ekiyor named JC Latham, a former 5-star recruit, as the guy to keep an eye on in 2022 (via TDAlabamaMag.com):

“That is my guy,” Ekiyor said of Latham. “He came in from day one as a freshman and was ready to work. He and I this summer got in a lot of reps. We would come here in the morning to get extra sets in. I am taking him under my wing as an older guy. He has put in a lot of work this offseason, and I feel he’s ready to have a big year.”

Latham taking on a bigger role will be big for the Alabama offensive line. We’ll see if he and his offensive line teammates are up to the task when the Tide take on Utah State in a few short weeks to begin the 2022 season.