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Yeldon explodes in Alabama's spring game

Freshman running back has an impressive performance. Dave Miller

Print This April 16, 2012, 04:38 PM EST

Replacing a potential Top 5 NFL Draft pick like Trent Richardson will not be easy for Alabama, but head coach Nick Saban and the Crimson Tide have plenty of firepower to keep their rushing attack potent.

Eddie Lacy enters the 2012 season as the starting running back, and his talent should allow him to assert himself as one of the better tailbacks in the nation.

But with Lacy sidelined due to injury this spring, another back has emerged as a viable option following a head-turning performance this past weekend.

T.J. Yeldon, an early enrollee who spurned Auburn to head to Alabama, put on quite a show in the team's spring game on Saturday. New offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier will now have the luxury of yet another running back to add to a growing backfield, which also features Jalston Fowler and Dee Hart.

In the spring-concluding contest, Yeldon recorded 179 combined yards, both on the ground and receiving, helping him earn the Dixie Howell Award for being the game's most valuable player.

While the Tide will continue to run the ball effectively no matter who is taking the carries, quarterback AJ McCarron should be able to take his shots down the field and utilize his improved corps of receivers, which will make the offense more balanced than last season.

Email dave.miller@nationalfootballpost.com or follow me on Twitter at Miller_Dave

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