TUSCALOOSA - Alabama's scrimmage on Saturday was a first test for two freshman punters who are competing for the starting job. Alabama coach Nick Saban gave Jay Williams and walk-on Cody Mandell mixed reviews.
"I think each punter got five or six live opportunities to punt," Saban said. "I think both guys had two or three good ones and both guys had two or three that probably could've been a little better."
The scrimmage was closed to the public and news media. Statistics that were compiled and distributed by Alabama's media relations staff did not include numbers for punters or kickers.
"If you've watched these guys punt in specialty before practice, you would say, 'Man, where'd you guys get those guys?'" Saban said. "But they've got to learn to take that to the game. They've got to learn to take that when it's live bullets and they're rushing at them and having the same rhythm."
>> Mixed review for kickers, too: Saban gave a similar mixed review for his place-kickers. Freshman Cade Foster, who participated in spring practice and kicked in the A-Day Game, is competing with sophomore Jeremy Shelley for the starting spot.
"I don't know what we were from a field-goal standpoint," Saban said. "I know we made some long field goals, and we missed one from 52 or 53 (yards). We just missed it. It was plenty long. We did a good job of kicking off.
"I think Shelley made two and missed two, but he has been the guy that has been really the most consistent from the 25-yard line in. I think he's only had one miss the whole camp.
"Cade's got a really strong leg and just has to get a little more consistent in his accuracy, but both those guys have talent. It's the same thing. You've got to be able to take it to the game with consistency and confidence."