Alabama 2023 squad position breakdown after closing the transfer portal window

Alabama’s 2023 roster is mostly set.

Two key deadlines passed this week to solidify Tide’s list: Monday was the last day underclassmen could enter the 2023 NFL draft and Wednesday was the last day of the NCAA’s 45-day window in which undergraduates could enter the transfer portal.

As of Saturday, two Alabama players have entered the portal, wide receiver Tyler Harrell and inside linebacker Demouy Kennedy, the 13th and 14th grantees to enter the portal since the beginning of the season.

Another portal window will open April 15-30, and grad players can enter the portal at any time, but Alabama’s off-season roster transition is largely complete. That includes five underclassmen entering the NFL draft and 28 new freshmen signing letters of intent in December.

Alabama could add a 29th in five-star Cormani McClain, whose lengthy recruiting process continues, by national signing day on Feb. 1, and it could decide to add additional players through the transfer portal. So far, The Tide has stayed conservative with the portal, only adding Maryland’s CJ Dippre after making five total additions last offseason.

As of Thursday, here is Alabama’s list of 2023 grant recipients:

Quarterbacks (4): Jalen Milroe, Ty Simpson, Eli Holstein, Dylan Lonergan

Remarks: The competition between Milroe and Simpson – and possibly the two freshmen – will be the main story of spring camp and possibly fall camp.

running back (5): Jase McClellan, Roydell Williams, Jamarion Miller, Judge Haynes, Richard Young

Remarks: McClellan and Williams will both be seniors in 2023 and could play big roles, though Alabama added two high-ranking freshmen in Haynes and Young.

Wide receivers (12): Ja’Corey Brooks, Jermaine Burton, Kobe Prentice, Isaiah Bond, Kendrick Law, Malik Benson, Emmanuel Henderson, Thaiu Jones-Bell, Shazz Preston, Jalen Hale, Jaren Hamilton, Cole Adams

Remarks: Brooks and Burton found their groove towards the end of the season and had one of their most productive games in the Sugar Bowl, despite adjusting to a new quarterback in 2023. However, Prentice and Bond emerged as the most rookies from Alabama 2022. Law and Preston are among a group that lost the portal to Aaron Anderson. Hale joins as one of the nation’s top-rated freshman recipients, while Benson is a junior college transfer who arrives with more experience.

Tight ends (7): CJ Dippre, Robbie Ouzts, Miles Kitselman, Amari Niblack, Danny Lewis, Elijah Brown, Ty Lockwood

Remarks: Dippre hails from Maryland, where he played under former Alabama offensive coordinator Mike Locksley. He is the presumptive favorite to replace Cameron Latu as starting tight end. The most talented reception option at this position could be Niblack, although his playing time as a freshman in 2022 was limited.

Offensive Linemen (13): JC Latham, Tyler Booker, Seth McLaughlin, Darrian Dalcourt, Elijah Pritchett, Terrence Ferguson, James Brockermeyer, Jaeden Roberts, Kadyn Proctor, Miles McVay, Olaus Alinen, Wilkin Formby, RyQueze McElderry

Remarks: That assumes Dalcourt returns in the fifth year available to him under the NCAA’s 2020 COVID-19 waiver. He has not yet publicly announced his plans. Alabama has three suspected starters in Latham, Booker and either McLaughlin or Dalcourt at center. It needs to figure out the other two spots after a sizeable off-season turnover and with a sizable class of five newcomers including five-star Kadyn Proctor.

Defender (15): Tim Smith, Jaheim Oatis, Justin Eboigbe, Jamil Burroughs, Jah-Marien Latham, Damon Payne, Monkell Goodwine, Anquin Barnes, Tim Keenan, Khurtiss Perry, Isaiah Hastings, James Smith, Edric Hill, Hunter Osborne, Jordan Renaud

Remarks: Eboigbe has signaled on Twitter that he will remain at Alabama for a fifth year, despite his 2022 season ending early due to a neck injury. Alabama lost Byron Young and DJ Dale to the draft but still has several veteran players in deep position.

Full-back (8): Dallas Turner, Chris Braswell, Quandarrius Robinson, Keanu Koht, Jeremiah Alexander, Keon Keeley, Yhonzae Pierre, Qua Russaw

Remarks: It seems safe to assume that Turner and Braswell are the top two options following Will Anderson’s departure. The bigger question is who is the best player to rotate onto the field with them. Alexander was a five-star recruit in 2022, and both Russaw and Keeley arrive as five-star members of the 2023 class.

Central defender (6): Deontae Lawson, Jihaad Campbell, Shawn Murphy, Kendrick Blackshire, Ian Jackson, Justin Jefferson

Remarks: Alabama might be a little weak on numbers after Kennedy entered the portal, but it’s adding a veteran junior collegiate player in Jefferson. Lawson appears confident in pinpointing one starting point while the other is less certain.

Cornerbacks (8): Kool-Aid McKinstry, Terrion Arnold, Jahquez Robinson, Earl Little, Trequon Fegans, Antonio Kite, Desmond Ricks, Jahlil Hurley

Remarks: McKinstry should occupy a starting spot; the question is who starts with the other. Arnold had a shot last season and could again, while Little could be an option among the Alabama 2022 freshmen. There’s also Ricks, a new five-star rookie, and the possibility of McClain. Alabama could also move some players in its secondary school as it coaches players to safety or to play stars.

Security (7): Malachi Moore, Kristian Story, Devonta Smith, Jake Pope, Caleb Downs, Tony Mitchell, Brayson Hubbard

Remarks: Moore could have a chance to start safely in a position that seems relatively unsettled after three years of Jordan Battle and DeMarcco Hellams. As a freshman, Downs could immediately see game time as one of the nation’s best recruits, but that will be a position to watch in the spring.

Kicker/Punter: Will Reichard, James Burnip, Conor Talty

Remarks: Reichard reversed course and returned for a fifth season, which could prevent Talty, the new freshman kicker, from seeing the field.

Mike Rodak is an Alabama beat reporter for the Alabama Media Group. Follow him on Twitter @micerodak.

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