Crimson Tide must answer several questions during spring

Starting spring QB likely to battle Coker in fall

Anniston StarMarch 15, 2014 

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- There are multiple questions surrounding Alabama that will need to be answered heading into next season.

Here are five burning questions that will need to be answered between now and A-Day.

1. Which quarterback will earn the right to battle Jacob Coker in the fall?

Alabama's 2014 quarterback battle comes with an interesting twist as Florida State transfer Jacob Coker won't arrive until the summer. That means the winner of the spring competition will have another race when fall practice rolls around.

Blake Sims, Alec Morris, Cooper Bateman, Parker McLeod and early enrollee David Cornwell will have 15 practices to impress Tide coach Nick Saban and new offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin. They'll have A-Day to impress the fans. No pressure.

2. Can Kirby Smart and Nick Saban establish a stable secondary?

Alabama won't be short on bodies in the secondary. Multiple players have experience at cornerback and safety. But outside of Landon Collins and maybe Jarrick Williams, no one has separated themselves from the pack as a clear cut starter. Guys like Eddie Jackson, Cyrus Jones and Bradley Sylve need to make a move at cornerback or risk having their time taken away.

3. Will the five best offensive linemen please stand up?

No offensive linemen should feel safe about their job after the way the unit's struggled last season. With a crop of new talent and other veterans eager to make an impact, this group should be more cohesive come the season opener.

4. Are there any elite pass rushers out there?

Not since Courtney Upshaw's run in 2011 has the Tide had a dominant edge rusher. That could change this season as Alabama's has multiple defensive linemen and linebackers who thrive on getting after the quarterback.

5. Where will the leadership come from?

AJ McCarron and C.J. Mosley aren't walking through that door so new leaders will have to emerge. There are plenty of upperclassmen who could fit the bill, but the question becomes who has enough positive influence to make their teammates want to follow.

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