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TRips: Clinton-Dix, Sims, Anderson

Clinton-Dix brings excellent range to the safety position.

Breaking down the 2012 Crimson Tide roster three players at a time. Up next, safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, running back Blake Sims and outside linebacker Ryan Anderson.

6 S Ha Ha Clinton-Dix (So.)
2011 season: Played in all 13 games, recording 11 tackles while working mostly on special teams. One of seven true freshmen to see the field in 2011, Clinton-Dix also provided depth at safety.
2012 spring practice: Exited spring drills as the third safety, which, with Vinnie Sunseri a candidate to fill nickel and dime roles, essentially gives Clinton-Dix "starter" status. Posted three solo tackles, a tackle for loss, forced a fumble and returned an interception 30 yards in the A-Day game. Had four tackles and an interception in the spring's second scrimmage. One of five players to receive the Ozzie Newsome Most Improved Freshman Award at the close of spring drills.
What he brings to the table: Safety size with corner-like ball skills. Gives UA the flexibility to play Sunseri at money and/or star in the extra defensive back packages and not lose anything at safety.

6 RB Blake Sims (So.)
2011 season: Rushed for 107 yards on 22 carries while seeing action in five games.
2012 spring practice: After sustaining a hip injury while playing basketball on spring break, Sims could only watch as Jalston Fowler, Dee Hart and T.J. Yeldon divvied up carries at running back in scrimmage work. On a positive note (for Sims, at least), Phillip Sims' decision to transfer could bring another Sims back into the picture at quarterback.
What he brings to the table: While he's a versatile athlete who is capable of providing depth at multiple positions, it remains to be seen if Sims will be featured at either running back or quarterback on a situational basis. The Wildcat would seem to be a logical package for Sims, although it wasn't used as much in 2011 as it was the previous two seasons.

7 LB Ryan Anderson (Fr.)
2011 season: A five-star prospect by 247sports.com, Anderson recorded 105 tackles and 12 sacks as a senior at Daphne High School.
2012 spring practice: Midyear enrollee who jumped directly into the mix at the vacant jack linebacker spot.
What he brings to the table: Anderson possesses the physical attributes needed to play early. However, there's a learning curve involving technique that even the most talented of newcomers must endure before they can perform at a high level. Still, other than Adrian Hubbard not much was settled at outside linebacker in the spring, so the opportunity for playing time will still be there for Anderson and others in August.

Up next: 7 WR Kenny Bell; 8 DE Jeoffrey Pagan; 9 CB Travell Dixon.

Also see:
Hart, White and Patrick
Sunseri, Yeldon and Black

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