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TRips: Foster, Fanning and Fowler

Foster hopes to return to his 2010 form.

Breaking down the 2012 Crimson Tide roster three players at a time. Up next, place kicker Cade Foster, defensive end LaMichael Fanning and running back Jalston Fowler.

43 PK Cade Foster (Jr.)
2011 season: As UA's primary option on field goal attempts of more than 42 yards, Foster converted 2 of 9 attempts with a long make of 46 yards. Also handled kickoffs, recording five touchbacks in 81 attempts.
2012 spring practice: Still somewhat inconsistent on field goals in scrimmage work, although he did cap drills with a 48-yarder in the A-Day game. Kickoffs in the final scrimmage settled in the vicinity of the goal line.
What he brings to the table: Similar to Cody Mandell in that length strength isn't as much of an issue for Foster as technique. And it's not like previous UA kickers -- Brian Bostick and Leigh Tiffin quickly come to mind -- haven't rebounded from lackluster performances to post productive seasons the following year. While rule change moving kickoffs up to the 35-yard line could lead to an increase in touchbacks, it's also important to note that beginning this season kickoff coverage units will begin their approach no further back than the 30. More kicks will find the end zone but with coverage units taking longer to hit full stride, returns will still have a place in the game.

44 DE LaMichael Fanning (rFr.)
2011 season: Scout team member while redshirting as a true freshman.
2012 spring practice: Worked behind Ed Stinson and Quinton Dial at right end. Posted a tackle for loss and a quarterback hurry in the A-Day game.
What he brings to the table: At 6-foot-7, 298 pounds, Fanning's physical gifts are obvious to the most novice of observers. Big and athletic, it would be difficult to draw up a better looking 3-4 defensive end prospect. It's the aspects of the game that aren't as apparent that Fanning will need to master before he'll take on a more prominent role in the rotation.

45 RB Jalston Fowler (Jr.)
2011 season: As UA's No. 3 running back, Fowler rushed for 385 yards and four touchdowns on 56 carries.
2012 spring practice: With Eddie Lacy recovering from turf toe surgery, Fowler worked with the first-team offense. Carried 22 times for 151 yards and three touchdowns in second scrimmage. Johnny Musso Offensive Back Award recipient at the close of spring drills. Underwent sports hernia and shoulder procedures after A-Day but was on track to return for the start of fall camp at last check.
What he brings to the table: First and foremost, Fowler is the kind of sledgehammer opposing defense hate to see when the second half rolls around. While not a track star, he's not the plodding back some make him out to be, either. A back doesn't average 7 yards per carry without mixing in some carries of distance.

Up next: 47 OLB Xzavier Dickson; 49 DE Ed Stinson; 50 OG Alphonse Taylor.

Also see:
1 Hart, 2 White and 2 Patrick
3 Sunseri, 4 Yeldon and 5 Black
6 Clinton-Dix, 6 Sims and 7 Anderson
7 Bell, 8 Pagan and 9 Dixon
10 McCarron, 10 Fulton and 12 Ely
13 Belue, 16 Sylve and 19 Atchison
20 Ja. Williams, 21 Calloway and 22 C. Jones
23 Washington, 25 Lee and 27 Perry
28 Milliner, 29 Mandell and 31 K. Johnson
32 Mosley, 33 DePriest and 35 N. Johnson
37 Lester, 42 Lacy and 42 Hubbard

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