Head coach Nick Saban hasn’t quite committed to anybody going into the season – or this game for that matter but this performance certainly does nothing but good things for him going forward. Bama, though, is a perennial exception, because of the type of program Nick Saban and his staff have manufactured in Tuscaloosa.
August 30, 2014: Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback Jake Coker (14) under center during the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Classic at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Ga. Then came last year’s Sugar Bowl loss to eventual national champion Ohio State.
Whomever starts will have to work with speedy and talented pass-catchers, but only senior transfer Richard Mullaney, previously with Oregon State, and junior Chris Black have significant experience.
Freshman running back Bradrick Shaw is playing the role of Alabama’s Derrick Henry on the scout team. Ultimately, Coker chose to go to FSU but now plays for Alabama. Especially this year since the Crimson Tide still haven’t settled on a starting quarterback, all of whom are unproven.
He slowed down in the second half, finishing 26-of-39 for 228 yards two touchdowns and an interception. He hasn’t really played the position since his junior year of high school, but has played quarterback, safety and wide receiver at Wisconsin. And there’s no better team with a franchise quarterback than a team with a franchise quarterback on the front end of the prime of his career. And Alabama was really bad trying to defend the pass late past year, allowing 256 yards or more in the last four games against power-conference opposition – a mind-boggling 456 against Auburn.
After losing a spot that was his the previous year, Joel Stave watched the LSU game from the sidelines last season, when former head coach Gary Andersen opted to start an inexperienced Tanner McEvoy, who is now working with the receivers.
Coker passed for 219 yards after completing 16-of-22 passes.
Clement has a long way to go before he’s a mid-first round draft pick in the National Football League draft, but he has a style about him that even the ridiculous talents of MGIII didn’t possess at this level.
The key stat for Alabama is 140 yards rushing. Often this season, Stave will be throwing at a window in the defense before he sees his intended target break into that space. The Tide came out running the ball, getting back to their bread and butter.
Alabama will move Robinson around depending on the situation, and he’ll be a handful for whichever offensive lineman has the job of moving him out of the way. Erickson led the Badgers in rushing and receiving with 25 and 74 yards respectively. We think the guy can be a fantastic player for us, and we want to Kenyan Drake got some opportunities. In fact, the next three seasons following 2015, Alabama has already scheduled three more neutral site games.
Arizona State (#15) vs. Texas A&M – Now this is one of the more interesting matchups this week due to the fact that A&M, though unranked, is actually favored to win.
Through two quarters of this one, it seemed as if Wisconsin might be able to hang with Alabama, as they only found themselves down 14-7 headed into the locker room.
Alabama built its most recent dynasty around that mantra from 2009-12, but the last two seasons have ended in postseason defeats, making the Tide look vulnerable in big games. Wisconsin is opening against an SEC team for the second year in a row, with plans for another next season.