This dominant defender helped the Tide win the 1973 National Championship and was a part of four SEC title teams. After contributing as a freshman and sophomore, Cook emerged as an All-American in his junior and senior seasons, notching 81 tackles, six sacks, 10 tackles for a loss and three blocked kicks as a junior and .85 tackles, 14 TFLs, nine sacks and four forced fumbles as a senior. Cook was named 1975 SEC Player of the Year by Atlanta TD Club. For his career, Cook tallied 200 tackles, 27 TFL, 15 sacks, forced 10 fumbles and blocked three kicks.
One of the most decorated defenders in Tide history, McClain started eight of 13 games as a true freshman., earning freshman All-SEC honors, before posting an All-America season as a sophomore. In a spectacular junior season, McClain tallied 105 tackles, 14.5 tackles for a loss, four sacks and two INTs and won the Lambert and Butkus Awards, given to the nation’s top LB, as well as the SEC Defensive Player of the Year award. For his career, McClain amassed 274 total tackles, 29.5 tackles for a loss, eight sacks and five INTs. He was the eighth overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft by the Oakland Raiders.
Ingram holds a unique place in Tide history as the only Heisman Trophy winner in program annals. Ingram made an immediate impact, earning all-SEC Freshman honors after scoring 12 TDs (a school record for a freshman). He went on to break the Tide's single-season rushing record with 1,658 yards and 17 TDs during his Heisman campaign of 2009, also catching passes for 334 yards and three touchdowns in leading Alabama to a national title. Ingram won the Offensive MVP honors in the 2009 BCS Championship game after carrying 22 times for 116 yards and two TDs against Texas. The 28th overall pick in the first round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the New Orleans Saints, Ingram finished his career with 3,324 rushing yards and 42 TDs on the ground in addition to 60 receptions for 670 yards and another four scores.
With the exception of the Heisman Trophy, there is little that “T-Rich” didn’t accomplish while at Alabama. The Penscaola, Fla., native won the Doak Walker Award and the SEC Offensive Player of the Year award in 2011 after leading the SEC in rushing at 129.2 yards per game as a junior. In two games against LSU, Richardson touched the ball 50 times for 276 yards and the only touchdowns scored by anyone in those two games. He played a huge role on not one but two Alabama National Championship teams. Richardson is the only running back in SEC history to reach the 20 rushing touchdown plateau and his 23 rushing scores (2011) tied Tim Tebow’s SEC all-time record. He finished his time at the Capstone with 3,130 yards rushing, 730 yards receiving, 720 kick return yards and 43 total touchdowns. Yet, possibly the most remarkable statistic for Mr. Richardson was his one lost fumble in 614 career touches.
Bear Bryant once referred to the big hog molly as the best player he ever coached regardless of position. The All-American helped pushed the Tide to back-to-back National Championships in 1978 and 1979. He was drafted by the Miami Dolphins in the second round of the 1980 NFL Draft.
One of only two three-time All-Americans (1973-75) in NCAA history, Lowe played on four SEC title teams and won a national championship while at Bama. He holds the Tide record for tackles in a single season with 134 stops as a sophomore and ranks third all-time with 315 total tackles. Drafted in the fifth round of the 1976 NFL Draft by the San Diego Chargers, Lowe is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame.
A four-year starter, Newsome was a part of three SEC titles and helped lead the Tide to a 42-6 overall record during his time in Tuscaloosa. Despite playing for what was primarily a running team, Newsome posted excellent receiving numbers, finishing his career with 102 receptions for 2,070 yards and an SEC-record 20.3 yards per catch. In 1994, Newsome was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. He went on to a Hall of Fame NFL career as well with the Cleveland Browns.
One of only two Butkus Award winners for Bama (Rolando McClain is the other), Thomas set an NCAA record with 27 sacks in 1988, was a unanimous All-American and finished 10th in the Heisman balloting that year. He finished his eligibility with an NCAA-record 52 career sacks (since broken). Thomas was the fourth overall pick in the 1989 NFL Draft by the Kansas City Chiefs and went on to an NFL Hall of Fame career, making nine Pro Bowls and setting an NFL record with seven sacks in one game.
A three-time All-American — one of only two in Bama history — "Biscuit" won the Lombardi Award in 1986 and finished seventh in the Heisman voting that season, earning SEC Player of the Year honors as well. Bennett, who recorded 287 tackles and 21.5 sacks during his career at Bama, was inducted into the NCAA Hall of Fame in 2005 and was the second overall pick in the 1987 NFL Draft by the Indianapolis Colts. He went on to make five Pro Bowl appearances during a solid NFL career.
Once dubbed the "Best Offensive Lineman of All Time" by Sports Illustrated, Hannah anchored a Tide front line that paved the way for two SEC Championships. The man they called "Hog" was a two-time All-American and a member of the Alabama All-Century Team. No less an authority than Bear Bryant called Hannah the greatest lineman he ever coached; that's good enough for us.
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