Just weeks away

By Staff
Former Hartselle star Stover anxiously awaiting start of Tide’s 2006 season
Justin Schuver, Hartselle Enquirer
Former Hartselle football standout Nikita Stover has to feel like a kid waiting for Christmas.
Alabama opens its college football schedule Sept. 2 against Hawaii, and barring injury or other unfortunate circumstances, Stover will run out onto the field at Bryant-Denny Stadium as a member of the Crimson Tide.
Stover’s journey to the Capstone has had its share of detours, beginning with his graduation from Hartselle High School in 2004. One of the highest-ranked recruits in the state, he committed early to Alabama but failed to qualify academically.
Two years and a degree from Itawamba Community College (Miss.) later, and Stover is about to get his second chance to live a childhood dream. Following the 2006 season, he will have two more years of eligibility at Alabama after redshirting his freshman year at Itawamba.
Like the other members of the Tide, Stover has been hard at work with preseason camp. The camp began on Aug. 8 and will continue until the Hawaii game.
During the spring practice sessions and A-Day game, Stover was hampered by a minor groin injury, but he feels healthy and ready to go now. In addition to being fully healed, Stover said that he has also lost about 10 pounds and the loss of weight has helped his speed and agility. Stover dropped from 205 pounds in May to his current playing weight of 193 pounds.
He said that he has seen action with both the first and second teams in offensive drills and has been able to witness the progression of new starting quarterback John Parker Wilson.
Stover is expected to be a part of a rotation of backup wide receivers that also includes Matt Caddell, Will Oakley and Aaron McDaniel.

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