Coach Nick Saban has been exceptional in his development of defensive backs at the University of Alabama and Malachi Moore is the next great one. After a stellar freshman campaign, Moore is off to a great start in his sophomore season.

Moore, a First-Team All-SEC preseason selection picked off Miami quarterback D'Eriq King with nine minutes to go in third quarter. The Alabama native caused his fifth turnover in 12 games for the Crimson Tide defense. With DeMarcco Hellams hampered by an ankle injury, Moore made his first career start at free safety with sophomore Brian Branch getting the start at the star position.

As a secondary, Alabama held Miami quarterback D'Eriq King to 179 yards passing and less than six yards per attempt. Whether Moore continues to play safety remains unclear, but the sophomore can definitely make an impact in a number of different positions.

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Last season, Moore was able to secure a starting role in the Alabama secondary as the star despite not having a spring practice, his vast knowledge caught the attention of Saban early on. He became the first true freshman defensive back to start the first game of the season since Minkah Fitzpatrick did in 2015.

Moore registered 44 tackles, four tackles for loss, six pass breakups, two quarterback pressures, one forced fumble and led the team in interceptions with three. He earned Second-Team All-SEC and First-Team Freshman All-American honors.

Moore was added to the Bronko Nagurski Award Preseason Watch List this off-season, an award presented to the best defensive player in college football, but left off of the Jim Thorpe Award Watch List, the nations top defensive back. He could become the first Alabama player on defense to win a national award as a sophomore.

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