Connect with us

Alabama Football Headlines

Transfer WR Germie Bernard brings a toughness that will fit in at Alabama

Washington WR Germie Bernard (#4) runs with the ball for the Huskies in 2024 Allstate Sugar Bowl against Texas.
John David Mercer - USA Today Sports

Alabama football ushered Jermaine Burton to the NFL Draft and lost Isaiah Bond, Ja’Corey Brooks, and Shazz Preston to the NCAA transfer portal, but the Crimson Tide picked up a wide receiver from the portal.

Germie Bernard, a transfer from the University of Washington, has a lot to prove.

RELATED: Who is Freddy Soft? Coach JaMarcus Shephard breaks down how Alabama stops complacency

He came one game away from holding the College Football Playoff trophy as a national champion.

The 6-foot-1, 203-pounder from Las Vegas (Nev.)  caught 34 passes last season for 419 receiving yards and two touchdowns for the Huskies.

He was one of five receivers that totaled 30+ catches from Michael Penix through 14 games.

Bernard also had two rushing touchdowns on 13 carries. He played at Michigan State in the Big Ten before traveling to Washington, posting seven catches for 128 yards and two touchdowns in 12 games. He returns six kickoffs for 116 yards in 2022 for the Spartans while performing kickoff returns and punt returns at Washington.

Bernard’s toughness gave the Huskies a very productive receiver room. JaMarcus Shephard, the Crimson Tide’s assistant coach, co-offensive coordinator, and wide receivers coach, was with Bernard at Washington and now joins him at Alabama. Shephard had an interview with Ryan Fowler of The Game on Tide 100.9 FM.

He explained the value Bernard brings to the Tide’s receiver room following the departure of players from the program.

“Germie is a pure receiver,” Shephard said at the 6:35 mark in his interview with Fowler. “He is someone who understands wide receiver play to a high level. He knows how tho get to his route, he locates it, he understands how to gain leverage on defenders in particular moments based on the leverage he wants to create. In addition to that you are going to see a tough kid.”

RELATED: Austin Mack, transfer QB for Alabama, looking to ‘push the envelope’ to become the starter

Nick Saban valued receivers that could block during his 17 years as Alabama’s head coach.

An elite skill set is nice, but Saban enjoyed unselfish guys who would do the dirty work on the perimeter to spring fellow receivers downfield for touchdowns or block a defender for a running back to get huge plays. Shephard coached the same toughness in Bernard as an unselfish player.

“If you watched the film of us at Washington, I had plenty of referees tell me ‘you have to watch No. 4. He is hitting the guys too hard. He’s flipped a couple of guys upside down on their heads blocking on the perimeter,'” Shephard said about Bernard’s blocking prowess. “He brings a mentality but also his knowledge of playing the position is going to be extremely helpful within the receiving core. He is making sure the guys here understand the nuance that are requited for this offense to be successful.”

Bernard replaces what Alabama lost in Isaiah Bond to Texas.

We will get to see the chemistry he builds with quarterbacks in spring practice.

*Get the BEST Alabama football insider information, message board access, and recruiting coverage today! SIGN UP HERE to unlock our subscriber-only content!*

Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

Stephen Smith is a 2015 graduate of the University of Alabama. He is a senior writer and reporter for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. He has covered Alabama football for 10+ years and his knowledge and coverage of the Crimson Tide's program have made him among the most respected journalist in his field. Smith has been featured on ESPN and several other marquee outlets as an analyst.

More in Alabama Football Headlines