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Alabama football's top guard also watches tackles during practice

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Alabama football fans can expect Crimson Tide offensive lineman Tyler Booker to assume his usual position at guard in Saturday's annual A-Day game, but that doesn't mean he hasn't been moving around in spring training. Booker, a junior who was named second team All-SEC last season, said Tuesday that he also did some work at offensive tackle this spring.

“I got a few looks out there because I was just trying to be versatile. Just because you never know what can happen over the course of a season. “I played there in high school, but in high school everyone plays offensive tackle,” Booker said with a laugh. “I will be ready when my name is called. I'm ready to do whatever this team needs to win. So if I have to play tackle, I will play tackle. I do (enjoy it). It's like riding a bike.”

Booker said the practice reps he received at tackle came from the left side. The tackle position is of particular interest because Alabama's pass protection was problematic last season and it lost its best pass blocker, tackle JC Latham, who opted to enter the NFL draft as an underclassman. Latham, projected to be a first-round pick later this month, manned the right tackle position in 2023, while freshman Kadyn Proctor played most of the season at the left tackle position. Proctor transferred to Iowa but has since announced he will return to Alabama in the fall.

Others starting at tackle include Wilkin Formby, Elijah Pritchett, Olaus Alinen and transfer Naquil Betrand, who transferred from Texas A&M. Alabama coach Kalen DeBoer indicated that UA's offensive line struggled in pass protection in the first of three scrimmages, but improved in that regard in the second scrimmage last Saturday.

Booker and the rest of the 2024 Alabama team will make their public debut this Saturday in the A-Day game, the last of 15 spring practices, at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Kick-off is at 3 p.m. and entry is free to the public.

Reach Tuscaloosa News columnist Chase Goodbread at [email protected]. Follow on Twitter @chasegoodbread.

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