Nick Saban looking forward to seeing Alabama freshmen defenders get playing time on Saturday
Cupcake Week is boring for fans, but coaches see it as a good opportunity to get certain players some in-game experience.
At his Wednesday post-practice press conference, Alabama coach Nick Saban mentioned that two Crimson Tide freshmen defensive linemen, Braylen Ingraham and Ishmael Sopsher, will make their debuts against Western Carolina on Saturday.
“I’m kind of anxious to see how they respond,” Saban said.
A product of St. Thomas Aquinas in South Florida, Ingraham was rated the No. 10 strong-side defensive end, No. 22 Florida recruit and No. 164 prospect overall nationally for the 2019 class on the 247Sports Composite. The Fort Lauderdale, Florida native is listed at 6-4, 291 pounds on Alabama’s official roster. He signed with Alabama during the December Early Signing Period and enrolled at UA in May.
Sopsher was rated even higher as a recruit. The Amite, Louisiana product was the No. 3 recruit in the state, No. 5 defensive tackle and No. 47 prospect overall nationally on the Composite. Sopsher took his recruitment down to the wire, taking his final visit to LSU on Feb. 1 before signing with the Tide on Feb. 6 (National Signing Day) and enrolling at UA in May.
Alabama has at least three games remaining (Western Carolina, Auburn and at least one bowl game). The freshmen can appear in up to four games and still redshirt for the 2019 season.