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In this paper, we present various channel estimators that exploit the channel sparsity in a multicarrier underwater acoustic system, including subspace algorithms from the array precessing literature, namely root-MUSIC and ESPRIT, and recent compressed sensing algorithms in form of Orthogonal Matching Pursuit (OMP) and Basis Pursuit (BP). Numerical simulation and experimental data of an OFDM block-by-block receiver are used to evaluate the proposed algorithms in comparison to the conventional least-squares (LS) channel estimator. We observe that subspace methods can tolerate small to moderate Doppler effects, and outperform the LS approach when the channel is indeed sparse. On the other hand, compressed sensing algorithms uniformly outperform the LS and subspace methods. Coupled with a channel equalizer mitigating intercarrier interference, the compressed sensing algorithms can handle channels with significant Doppler spread.