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Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Alabama signs Australian Jesse Williams
The commitment of Jesse Williams was somewhat lost in the aftermath of the San Jose State pummeling, but his commitment deserves a second mention and closer consideration.
Stepping back for a moment, the hardest aspect of running a 3-4 defense is finding someone to hold the nose. It's incredibly tough to find someone for the position because not only do you need someone with the strength to hold the nose against double teams and the lateral agility to play two gaps, but you also need someone with the character required to toil in relative anonymity while your defensive teammates get most of the glory. It's much easier to find linebackers and ends, while it's exceptionally difficult to find someone who can legitimately hold the nose.
If you were drawing up an ideal nose guard, though, you would probably end up with something highly similar to Jesse Williams. This native Australian comes in at over 6'4 and 320 pounds, and he has simply annihilated JUCO competition. Don't underestimate that last point. It's one thing to dominate on the prep circuit, when half the team you are facing some 16-year pip squeak barely good enough to start on his high school team, but when you hit the JUCO ranks you are competing against bona fide players each and every week, and when you consistently leave those guys in a bloody heap, well, you're really doing something. Watch and enjoy: