Will Alabama Football pursue any more transfers this offseason?

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

Alabama Football has welcomed in its share of impact players from the NCAA transfer portal in recent years, including wide receiver Jameson Williams and running back Jahmyr Gibbs.

Last year, Bama brought in five transfers with Gibbs, wide receiver Jermaine Burton, offensive tackle Tyler Steen, and cornerback Eli Ricks all finding themselves in starting roles. Former transfer linebacker Henry To’o To’o was also a starter. A significant chunk of Alabama’s 2022 production came from players it had previously acquired via the transfer portal.

It appears the Crimson Tide are taking a less aggressive approach to the transfer portal this offseason, prioritizing the development of its numerous blue-chip recruits over adding players from elsewhere. So, the question remains, how many transfers will Alabama Football ultimately sign heading into 2023?

Alabama Football: A pair of portal signees

So far, Alabama has landed two transfers in junior tight end CJ Dippre and senior inside linebacker Trezmen Marshall.

Dippre transferred from Maryland, where he proved himself to be an effective blocker and pass catcher. He is expected to push for a starting spot immediately.

Marshall transferred from Georgia, where he dealt with injuries and served as a rotational piece. He has more of an uphill battle, but will certainly compete for a starting job on Kevin Steele’s defense.

Other potential holes on Alabama Football roster

Many Alabama Football fans wanted the Tide to dip into the portal this offseason for an experienced quarterback. There were quality options available, like former Wake Forest signal caller Sam Hartmann and Coastal Carolina gunslinger Grayson McCall, but Alabama already has a quartet of good quarterbacks on its roster.

While these guys have very little collective game experience, it is a talented group of quarterbacks with four unique skill sets. I am firmly of the belief that Bama’s next great quarterback is already in Tuscaloosa.

The Alabama offensive line may have some holes, with two of its members entering the draft and five more hitting the transfer portal. The Tide brings in a loaded freshmen class to replenish its offensive line, but it now lacks seasoned depth. Some of that young talent figures to play important roles on the 2023 offensive line. True freshman Kadyn Proctor and redshirt freshman Elijah Pritchett are heavily in the mix for starting jobs.

I don’t believe Alabama will find better linemen in the portal, but it may be interested in bringing in an offensive lineman or two for added depth.

The Alabama secondary was hit by attrition as hard as any position group on the roster. Cornerback Eli Ricks and safeties Jordan Battle, Brian Branch, and DeMarcco Hellams are all entering the professional ranks, leaving behind a fairly inexperienced group.

In my opinion, if Alabama Football is going to take another transfer this offseason, defensive back is the most likely position.

Caleb Downs is expected to step in and be an impact freshman at safety. Even if he lives up to the hype, he will only solidify one position in the secondary. The other spots could be filled by veteran players that have primarily served as backups, such as safeties Malachi Moore, Kristian Story, and DeVonta Smith.

Cornerback Terrion Arnold has a head start on taking the starting spot opposite Kool-Aid McKinstry, but even he is unproven to an extent.

Moore and McKinstry are established players, but no one else has shown the ability to consistently be reliable and impactful.

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Will the other members of the secondary step up, or will Bama hit the portal?