July 8, 2008
10 Impact Signees: Mark Ingram
With Alabama drawing the Rivals.com No.1-ranked signing class in the nation last February, anticipation runs high among fans waiting to see how an especially gifted group of newcomers melds with a group of veterans with some obvious depth concerns. BamaOnLine.com bridges the 'dog days' of summer with a countdown of 10 signees - published in ascending order - who could have the most impact on the 2008 season. The listing is influenced by the Crimson Tide's depth at the positions they are expected to play, not just prep credentials.
Position: Running back.
Size: 5-10, 195 pounds.
High school: Flint (Mich.) Southwestern Academy.
The film room: Ingram brings a blend of power and speed in a short, compact frame. His film shows a willingness to run aggressively between the tackles and deliver as much punishment as he absorbs. The son of the former NFL wide receiver by the same name, Ingram ran for over 1,700 yards as a senior with 24 touchdowns.
Who is in front of him: Glen Coffee, Terry Grant, Roy Upchurch, Demetrius Goode, Jeramie Griffin, Jonathan Lowe.
Climbing the depth chart: The Crimson Tide has numbers at the position, but question marks surround pretty much all of them. Can Grant take the pounding? Can Coffee provide big plays? Can Upchurch realize his vast potential? Can Goode fully rebound from ACL surgery? The fewer of these questions that are answered, the better chance Ingram has to make a difference.
What will make it tough: One of the biggest adjustments for a freshman running back is the overall speed of the defense. Holes open and close much more quickly, and breaking a play to the sideline to turn the corner doesn't pay off as often.
Tim Watts' take: xxx.
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