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Nate Oats updates the status of Kool-Aid McKinstry, James Rojas, and Nimari Burnett

Nate Oats updates the status of Kool-Aid McKinstry, James Rojas, and Nimari Burnett

Kool-Aid McKinstry and Terrion Arnold, both Alabama football cornerbacks, have not yet joined the Tide's basketball team, and there is no timetable for the completion.

Both McKinstry and Arnold, both freshmen, were planning to play two sports when they enrolled at Alabama last year.

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We have not seen Terrion or Kool-Aid, Alabama coach Nate Oats said Friday. Obviously its a long football season, and their bodies need a little time to recover. I did talk to [assistant] Coach [Bryan] Hodgson about it, and I think theyve reached out to him.

I dont have an anticipated start time, nor is there a plan for them to come in or not.

McKinstry signed his intent in December 2020 and later practiced before starting the season in March.

Late in the season, McKinstry, a five-star football recruit, took over as a starter for Alabama's football team due to injuries to Josh Jobe and Jalyn Armour-Davis, while Arnold had limited playing time on special teams.

Arnold, a four-star recruit in the 2020 football class ranked no. 51 nationally by 247 Sports, said during his recruitment that he is playing basketball in college.

Like I said before, its really hard here, but football going so late," Oats said. It seems like theyre playing until the middle of January every year here. By that time weve played over half of our schedule at this point.

Id love to have some toughness and defense, but our defense has been an issue. Both of those guys are big-time athletes that can probably guard a little bit. But were not anticipating them at any point here real soon.

The Oats said that forward James Rojas is on the verge of returning from the summer.

Hes been able to do some live stuff in the half court in practice, said Clarke after practice. "We'll dress him out -- maybe looking at, possibly, at LSU next week.

"It should be within a week with Rojas. I thought he looked pretty good today in practice. Probably try to get him to the next stage, and he'll perform everything live in practice, full court up and down. But he's on the scout team when we guard their stuff in the half court. He's good."

Nimari Burnett, a guard from Texas Tech who had season-ending in September, is progressing in his rehabilitation. On Wednesday, the former McDonald's All-American shot in the practice gym.

Clarke believes that hes ahead of schedule, he said. Hes a kid who works really hard and takes his game seriously. Hes coming along really well. I dont know the video youre talking to, but my guess would be that hes making them because he made shots too, before he gets hurt.

Burnett was on three-point shooting in live situations before being injured before the game. Oats said Burnett was on fire 60 percent on three-pointers in his attempts to improve their performance.

We would have liked to have him this year," Oats said. Weve had problems shooting the ball at various times this year and he's certainly one of the best shooters on the team. He's got a pretty high IQ, and he talks to the guys when they're out.

Were excited that hes involved in the program. Wishing he could have played this year. Its unfortunate he cant. But his rehab is coming along fine and I think hell be 100 percent by the time the season starts next year.

Mike Rodak is a reporter for Alabama Media Group. Follow him on Twitter

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