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Alabama LB Keith Holcombe Won't Play 2018 Season

A general view of Bryant-Denny Stadium during the game between the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Tennessee Volunteers.

TUSCALOOSA, AL - OCTOBER 24: A general view of Bryant-Denny Stadium during the game between the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Tennessee Volunteers at on October 24, 2009 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Alabama's linebacker depth will be tested during the upcoming college football season. The team received some bad news earlier this week that linebacker Keith Holcombe won't be playing during the 2018 season.

He's decided to focus on baseball instead. Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban broke the news during SEC Media Days earlier this week.

Saban praised the veteran linebacker before announcing he won't be a part of the program this year.

"He's been a great contributor in the program, not only on the field but a great human being, outstanding student, been a really, really good leader for us, and I would love to have him come back and be a part of our team," he said.

Saban went on to say Holcombe is sticking with baseball. "And he has made that decision -- to play baseball and not be a part of the team."

Holcombe wasn't going to be the starter for the Tide, but he also plays a pivotal role on special teams. The linebacker depth behind Mack Wilson and Dylan Moses just got thinner.

Alabama opens the 2018 season against Louisville.