FOSTER AND BATEMAN // TWO PLAYERS TO WATCH IN SPRING/SUMMER PRACTICE

Robert Foster—Thick of the Competition Alabama identifies two players that look to lead its receiving corps in 2015, O.J. Howard and Chris Black. Howard caught 17 passes for 260 yards in 2014, while Black put in 15 receptions for 188 yards in 11 games last season. Cam Sims and ArDarius Stewart will be in the mix as well. Both players earned field time in 2014, and showcased play making abilities.
Redshirt sophomore Robert Foster isn’t involved much in conversations, but he’s one player to look out for next season. He appeared in nine games last season, totaling 44 yards on six catches. The Pennsylvania native is a freak athlete at 6’3” and 191 pounds. Foster has progressed as a route runner, and possesses speed with body control. Consistency with his hands is the lone thing holding him back from seeing more playing time. Foster tends to drop a lot of catchable balls.
Crimson Tide fans saw a solid performance from Foster in Alabama’s 2014 A-Day game. He established chemistry with backup quarterback Cooper Bateman, catching four passes for 50 yards. His balance and body control proved critical, as he was able to tight rope the sideline on a few catches. Foster’s effort helped the White team defeat the Crimson team, 17-13.
He was one of the top wide receiver prospects nationally coming out of Central Valley High School. Foster was rated as a five-star recruit by 247 sports and Scout.com. He recorded 1,860 yards and 26 touchdowns on 107 catches in his career. His numbers as a running back were stellar, accounting for 1,374 yards and 15 rushing touchdowns.
Calvin Ridley and Daylon Charlot will join the team as freshmen this summer, but Foster is in the thick of the competition. His size and abilities make up his potential to be an explosive, vertical target. Alabama lacks big game experience at receiver with Amari Cooper, Christion Jones and DeAndrew White gone. Expect to see more of Foster in 2015, if he can improve his hands.

Cooper Bateman—Quiet Confidence
Former Alabama quarterback Blake Sims did the unimaginable in 2014. He guided the Crimson Tide to a Southeastern Conference title and an appearance in the College Football Playoff. Prior to the run, Sims had a rough A-Day performance and was inconsistent at times as a backup quarterback. He was able to fend off Florida State transfer Jake Coker, earning him the starting job. Sims finished last season with 3,487 passing yards, 28 touchdowns and 10 interceptions.
Coker is assumed to be the starter next season, but like Sims, he must outwork the competition. Alabama returns four other quarterbacks, including redshirt sophomore Cooper Bateman.
The 6-foot-3, 215-pound Bateman excelled on special teams last season (holder). He did a solid job as a scout team quarterback, giving Alabama’s defense multiple looks. He’s a native of Murray, Utah, that was a marquee name at Cottonwood High School. Bateman showed promise as a dynamic passer, totaling 7,654 yards and 68 touchdowns in his career. He displayed athleticism as a runner, accounting for 12 rushing touchdowns in his senior year.
Bateman was one of the nation’s top quarterbacks in the class of 2013. A former four-star prospect, he was ranked as the No. 3 pocket passer by ESPN and the No.5 pro-style quarterback by 247 sports and Scout.com. Bateman arrived at Alabama as an early enrollee in January of 2013. He possessed mobility and arm strength, but accuracy and ball placement were areas of concern. Bateman has improved his vision and mechanics as a passer.
Alabama fans saw a confident Bateman inside Bryant-Denny Stadium during the Crimson Tide’s 2014 A-Day game. He put in decent numbers, completing 11 of 24 passes for 156 yards and a touchdown. Bateman established chemistry with wide receiver Robert Foster. He caught four of Bateman’s 24 passes, resulting in 50 yards. Bateman’s performance was enough to help the White team defeat the Crimson squad 17-13.
Bateman eyes the starting job as he returns for a third season. Fans and sports writers desire to see true freshman Blake Barnett. Sophomore David Cornwell wants to prove that he’s more than just the second quarterback signed in Alabama’s 2014 class. Alec Morris is about to enter his fourth season in the system and isn’t backing down. All signs once again point toward Jake Coker, but a push from Bateman in spring practice and summer workouts can land him an opportunity.

About The Author

2 Responses

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.