Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Missouri Tigers: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly


Alabama (11-1) clinched their spot in the College Football Playoffs and won the SEC Championship in the process with a dominating 42-13 win over the Missouri Tigers.

Led by a suffocating run defense and another terrific performance by Blake Sims, Alabama scored 21 unanswered points in the fourth quarter after Missouri pulled the score to 21-13. Much like the Iron Bowl, a dominating fourth quarter sealed the win for the Tide.

The Good

Blake Sims started as hot against Missouri as he ended against Auburn, and then after missing on a few throws in the third quarter bounced right back, leading Alabama on three straight scoring drives in the fourth.

Sims threw for 262 yards and two touchdowns en route to winning the MVP award while receiver Amari Cooper broke the single season SEC receptions record, as well as the SEC Championship Game receptions record, with 12 catches and 83 yards.

DeAndrew White had by far his best game of the season, going over 100 yards (four catches, 101 yards, one TD) for the first time this year. White looks healthy for the first time this season and he his playing his best ball down the stretch, which will be huge for Cooper and Sims in the playoffs. Christion Jones also made several big catches in the game.

Derrick Henry may be getting a new nickname soon as “The Closer,” as he has stuck the nail in the coffin in the previous two games with huge fourth quarters. After running for over 70 yards in the fourth quarter against Auburn he added over 100 yards and two scores in the SEC Championship. Henry ended the game with 148 yards.

Alabama’s run defense was absolutely stifling all game long and A’Shawn Robinson may have turned in the finest performance of his career in the process. The massive sophomore turned in nine tackles with three for a loss, and was a nightmare to Missouri running backs all night long. Trey DePriest also turned in another fine performance. Alabama’s pass rush was solid all night, rattling Maty Mauk, but struggled when Mauk rolled out of the pocket (more on that later).

Punter JK Scott saved the day in the third quarter, when long snapper Cole Mazza snapped the ball extremely low. As the Missouri rush closed in, Scott scooped the ball up and instead of panicking managed to get off a solid punt. He averaged over 43 punts on his third punts.

The Bad

Alabama’s slump in the third quarter could have turned out costly had they not been able to bounce back in the fourth quarter. This has happened more than once this year and is something Alabama has to make sure to work on in the down time before the playoffs begin, because a slump like that against elite teams could be killer.

Alabama’s defense seemed to have Missouri shut down in the red zone on their scoring drive in the third quarter, but scored on fourth down when Missouri’s receivers ran a “pick play” with no flag from the official. The worst part about it was how blatant the pick was with the receiver making no attempt to hide that he was attempting to hinder the defensive back’s ability to get to the other receiver.

The Ugly

Alabama’s discipline in the secondary when Maty Mauk scrambled was absolutely atrocious. The only plays the Missouri offense were able to get any type of traction with were those deep “throw ‘em up and pray” throws Mauk hit when he scrambled much like Johnny Manziel had done in previous years. If you don’t think Oregon and Marcus Mariotta are paying attention to that, with a potential showdown between the two programs in the future, then you are insane. The secondary simply has to have discipline and good technique not to be burned on those types of plays.

Final Stats

Blake Sims: 23-27, 262 yards, 2 TD; 9 carries, 19 yards

Derrick Henry: 20 carries, 141 yards, 2 TD
TJ Yeldon: 14 carries, 47 yards, 2 TD
Tyren Jones: 3 carries, 26 yards
Jalston Fowler: 1 carry, 2 yards; 1 catch, 13 yards

Amari Cooper: 12 catches, 83 yards; 1 carry, 9 yards
DeAndrew White: 4 catches, 101 yards, 1 TD
Christion Jones: 3 catches, 40 yards, 1 TD
OJ Howard: 2 catches, 20 yards
Brian Vogler: 1 catch, 5 yards

A’Shawn Robinson: 9 tackles, 3.0 tackles for loss, 1 quarterback hurry
Landon Collins: 7 tackles, 1.0 tackle for loss, 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recovery
Geno Smith: 5 tackles, 1 pass breakup
Jarran Reed: 4 tackles, 2.0 tackles for loss
Trey DePriest: 4 tackles, 1 pass breakup
Eddie Jackson: 4 tackles, 1 pass breakup
Nick Perry: 3 tackles, 1 pass breakup
Xzavier Dickson: 2 tackles, 4 quarterback hurries
DJ Pettway: 2 tackles
Jabriel Washington: 2 tackles
Rashaan Evans: 2 tackles, 1 quarterback hurry
Reggie Ragland: 2 tackles
Da’Shawn Hand: 2 tackles
Christion Jones: 1 tackle
Cyrus Jones: 1 tackle
Ryan Anderson: 1 tackle, 3 quarterback hurries
Brandon Ivory: 1 tackle
Tyren Jones: 1 tackle
Dillon Lee: 1 tackle
Tim Williams: 1 quarterback hurry
Jonathan Allen: 1 quarterback hurry

JK Scott: 3 punts, 43.3 yards per punt
Adam Griffith: 7/7 XPs
Christion Jones: 1 punt return, 1 yard; 3 kickoff returns, 85 yards