FOOTBALL

Alabama football signing class 2022: What to expect from every player Nick Saban signed

Nick Kelly
The Tuscaloosa News

Alabama football is preparing for the Cotton Bowl as part of the semifinal round of the College Football Playoff, but it's not too early for a look ahead to 2022. 

Especially on early national signing day. 

Here's a look at how each player who signed with the Crimson Tide on Wednesday could contribute and what opportunities might be available early. 

Editor's note: This story will be updated as each signing becomes official: 

ALABAMA FOOTBALL RECRUITING:Can Alabama football, Nick Saban remain No. 1 on early national signing day?

HEISMAN TROPHY:Behind the scenes at the Heisman Trophy ceremony with Alabama football's Bryce Young

BRYCE YOUNG:Exclusive: Alabama football's Bryce Young shares journey from Cali kid to Heisman Trophy winner

Edge Jeremiah Alexander (6-2, 235)

Thompson High School (Alabaster, Ala.)

247Sports Composite: 5-star, No. 1 edge defender

What to expect: Alabama already has All-American Will Anderson Jr. at one edge spot and SEC All-Freshman team member Dallas Turner at the other. It's a crowded position, but as 2021 has shown with injuries to Christopher Allen and Drew Sanders, depth is important. 

WR Aaron Anderson (5-9, 210) 

Edna Karr High School (New Orleans, La.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 14 receiver

What to expect: There could be a need for young receivers to step up early in 2022. Anderson could be among those who compete for those snaps. 

ATH Isaiah Bond (5-10, 175)

Buford High School (Buford, Ga.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 2 Athlete

What to expect: Alabama could have another shakeup at the receiver position if Jameson Williams heads to the NFL Draft while John Metchie III aims to recover from an ACL injury he suffered in the SEC Championship Game. There could be opportunities for young receivers early in 2022. 

OT Tyler Booker (6-5, 325)

IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 6 offensive tackle

What to expect: Alabama will likely experience some changes at the tackle position for the 2022 season. Both tackle spots could be open for competition with Evan Neal likely heading to the NFL Draft and Chris Owens wrapping up his time with the Crimson Tide after six seasons. 

TE Elijah Brown (6-5, 230) 

Wayne High School (Dayton, Ohio)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 14 tight end

What to expect: Brown gives Alabama another option at the tight end position, where the Crimson Tide will want more consistency in 2022. 

EDGE Jihaad Campbell (6-3, 215)

IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 9 edge defender

What to expect: Campbell joins a crowded position group with Will Anderson Jr. at the top of the list. Snaps could become hard to come by early if everyone is healthy. But as 2021 has shown at edge defender, depth is important for when injuries happen. 

CB Tre'Quon Fegans (6-2, 181)

Thompson High School (Alabaster, Ala.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 15 cornerback

What to expect: The future of the cornerback position holds some uncertainty. The starters to begin the year, Josh Jobe and Jalyn Armour-Davis, are both upperclassmen. What they decide for their futures will likely determine opportunities for playing time for younger cornerbacks such as Fegans. 

DL Isaiah Hastings (6-4, 290)

Clearwater Academy International (Clearwater, Fla.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 39 defensive lineman

What to expect: Hastings will look to potentially compete for a spot in the defensive line rotation, depending on how other freshmen and upperclassmen also perform in practices in the spring and the fall. 

RB Emmanuel Henderson (6-1, 185)

Geneva County High School (Hartford, Ala.)

247Sports Composite: 5-star, No. 1 running back

What to expect: Henderson could have a chance to play early depending on how he adjusts. Brian Robinson Jr. will likely head to the NFL, leaving an opening at the starting running back spot. Jase McClellan and Roydell Williams will each be returning from injuries, and 5-star freshman Camar Wheaton hasn't been healthy enough to play this season. 

ATH Antonio Kite (6-1, 180) 

Anniston High School (Anniston, Ala.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 5 athlete

What to expect: Kite has experience at defensive back and receiver, so Alabama has options as to how it wants to use him. 

CB Earl Little Jr. (6-0, 175)

American Heritage High School (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 12 cornerback

What to expect: Depending on what happens with the upperclassmen at cornerback such as Armour-Davis and Jobe, young cornerbacks could be needed to contribute. Otherwise, current freshman Kool-Aid McKinstry will return after seeing some time this season as a starter. 

RB Jamarion Miller (5-10, 195)

Tyler Legacy High School (Tyler, Texas)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 7 running back

What to expect: There will be an opening at the starting running back spot in 2022. With others attempting to return from injuries at the position, young backs such as Miller will have a chance to compete early. 

LB Shawn Murphy (6-2, 215)

Unity Reed High School (Manassas, Va.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 5 linebacker

What to expect: Murphy's chance to see the field as a freshman will depend a good amount on what Henry To'o To'o and Christian Harris decide. If each heads to the NFL Draft, that would open more opportunities for young linebackers such as Murphy. Otherwise, he might have more of a chance to contribute on special teams early. 

ATH Amari Niblack (6-4, 220) 

Lakewood High School (Saint Petersburg, Fla.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 7 athlete. 

What to expect: Niblack has the ability to be a receiver or a tight end. Either way, with his frame, he has a chance to be a mismatch for Alabama against defenders. 

DL Jaheim Oatis (6-4, 370)

Columbia High School (Columbia, Miss.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 9 defensive lineman

What to expect: If Oatis adjusts well to the college game, he could find himself in the defensive line rotation as a freshman. There could be a couple open spots up front if players such as Phidarian Mathis head to the NFL Draft. 

DL Khurtiss Perry (6-2, 265)

Pike Road High School (Pike Road, Ala.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 11 defensive lineman

What to expect: Depending on who returns on a defensive line that has multiple upperclassmen, there could be opportunities for younger players such as Perry to contribute early in the rotation for Alabama. 

S Jake Pope (6-1, 190) 

Buford High School (Buford, Ga.)

247Sports Composite: 3-star, No. 32 safety. 

What to expect: Alabama could have some changes at the top of the safety depth chart depending on what upperclassmen such as Jordan Battle and DeMarcco Hellams decide to do for their futures. But early on, Pope will likely best have a shot to contribute on special teams. 

WR Kobe Prentice (5-10, 171)

Calera High School (Calera, Ala.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 24 receiver

What to expect: Prentice will be among the group of young receivers competing for snaps as Alabama will likely experience change at the front of the receiver position. If Jameson Williams heads to the NFL Draft, there will be more opportunities for young receivers to contribute early. 

WR Shazz Preston (6-0, 190)

St. James High School (Saint James, La.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 3 receiver

What to expect: Alabama might have some need for younger receivers to step up depending on if Jameson Williams heads to the draft and how Metchie recovers from his ACL injury. Preston could be part of that young group.

OT Elijah Pritchett (6-6, 280) 

Carver High School (Columbus, Ga.)

247Sports Composite: 4-star, No. 7 offensive tackle

What to expect: Alabama grabbed the No. 6 and No. 7 offensive tackles for the 2022 class, and both could have a chance to compete with likely transition in the offseason at the position. 

OT Dayne Shor (6-6, 295) 

Denmark High School (Alpharetta, Ga.)

247Sports Composite: 3-star, No. 32 offensive tackle

What to expect: There will likely be plenty of competition at offensive tackle, but as a 3-star prospect, Shor will more likely compete for a reserve role early on the offensive line. 

QB Ty Simpson (6-2, 185)

Westview High School (Martin, Tenn.)

247Sports Composite: 5-star, No. 3 QB

What to expect: Simpson will join a quarterback room with the reigning Heisman Trophy winner in Bryce Young as well as Paul Tyson and Jalen Milroe. Simpson will be competing to back up Young early.