Special to the Journal
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The No. 1 ranked football team (1-0) continued preparations for its home opener against Western Kentucky (1-0) on Saturday with a two-hour practice session in full pads, Wednesday afternoon at the Thomas-Drew Practice Fields.
“We have a tremendous amount of respect for every team that we play,” said Alabama head coach Nick Saban. “Western Kentucky has won eight of their last nine games, so we certainly respect what they do. They do a very good job of coaching their players, and we just want to continue to do the things we need to do to improve and progress as a team.”
The Hilltoppers earned a 49-10 win over Austin Peay last weekend to open the 2012 season and were led on offense by quarterback Kawaun Jakes, who had a career-high 296 passing yards and four touchdowns. Defensively, Western Kentucky was led by linebacker Andrew Jackson, who had six total tackles, including 2.5 for a loss and a forced fumble.
“He (Andrew) is a really good player,” added Saban. “He is very instinctive, plays the line well and is very physical. He is a really good tackler, and I think he is an SEC player, no doubt. He really plays the game the way you like to see defensive players play it.”
Alabama has won its last eight home openers in Tuscaloosa, including all five under Saban. The last home opening loss came against No. 1 ranked Oklahoma on Sept. 6, 2003.
The Crimson Tide and Hilltoppers will kickoff at 2:30 p.m. CT on the SEC Network. Mike Morgan and Chris Doering will have the call, while Jill Montgomery will be reporting from the sidelines.
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