Tide notebook: McCarron offers praise for teammate
by Marq Burnett
Oct 15, 2013 | 1992 views |  0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Alabama's AJ McCarron said Tennessee's "red team" comments motivated him and his teammates. (Photo by Trent Penny/The Anniston Star)
Alabama's AJ McCarron said Tennessee's "red team" comments motivated him and his teammates. (Photo by Trent Penny/The Anniston Star)
TUSCALOOSA — After Alabama coach Nick Saban praised walk-on quarterback Luke Del Rio on Thursday during his weekly radio show, starting quarterback AJ McCarron spoke highly of the true freshman as well.

“Luke has been very good. I like Luke a lot,” McCarron said Monday. “I kind of mess with him. He’s always around me trying to learn everything. Sometimes you’ve got to try to hide from him, get away. He’s a really smart kid, throws a really good ball, and I think he’s going to be a heck of a player in the future. I really do.”

Del Rio was one of four quarterbacks who traveled to Texas A&M and Kentucky, along with McCarron, Blake Sims and redshirt freshman Alec Morris.

Del Rio is the son of Denver Broncos defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio. He is one of three true freshmen quarterbacks on the Tide’s roster along with Cooper Bateman and Parker McLeod.

“We’ve been really pleased with the way Luke Del Rio has developed as a quarterback,” Saban said. “Probably not playing him this year unless we have to but he’s done a really good job as the third guy.”

A true freshman quarterback has never taken a snap during Saban’s tenure at Alabama.

HAHA’S STATUS: Saban said nothing has changed regarding the status of suspended safety HaHa Clinton-Dix.

Saban said Clinton-Dix is helping the Crimson Tide on the scout-team defense

“I think he’s done as good a job in trying to practice and continue to improve working and practicing on scout team as anyone could,” Saban said.

Clinton-Dix has missed the past two games after being suspended for a violation of team rules. Saban and Alabama have not commented on the specifics of Clinton-Dix’s situation.

“I’m sure it’s a difficult circumstance,” Saban said. “Nobody that is a true competitor likes not to be there for his teammates. HaHa has been that kind of player for us.”

Sophomore Landon Collins has filled in for Clinton-Dix at free safety. Saban said he would provide an update on Clinton-Dix when there is new information.

“You’ve got to make good choices and decisions about what you do, and when you don’t do the right things, there are consequences that we all have to suffer through,” Saban said. “Hopefully, this will be a great learning experience for not only HaHa but each and every player on our team.”

PLAYERS OF THE WEEK: Arie Kouandjio, Kevin Norwood and Anthony Steen were named players of the week on offense by Alabama’s coaches. C.J. Mosley and A’Shawn Robinson represented the defense, while Cade Foster, Christion Jones, Altee Tenpenny and DeAndrew White were on the special teams list.

Kouandjio and Steen, who was named the SEC offensive lineman of the week, helped create holes for the Tide to rush for 299 yards and amass 668 yards of total offense. Norwood led all receivers with 81 yards on four catches with one touchdown.

Mosley has been on the player of the week list every week this season and once again led the team in tackles with seven.
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