Alabama Crimson Tide: Bama Hammer staff predictions for Duke game

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

Predicting the outcome of the Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Duke game became more difficult after player suspensions and the devastating loss of Dylan Moses. Check out the Bama Hammer staff predictions.

According to the gambling site Bovada the Alabama Crimson Tide is still a 33.5 point favorite against the Duke Blue Devils. That is after the sports world knowing four key Alabama football players will be suspended for one quarter of the game – or maybe for an entire half.

And it is after the Dylan Moses injury which means Alabama football will start two, true freshmen at inside linebacker.

The Blue Devils must feel seriously slighted. What will happen? The Bama Hammer staff offers our best guess – not about whether the Crimson Tide will win – but will it cover and will it do so looking like a national championship contender.

A few days ago, Bama Hammer Contributor, Zachary Mangum did a mathematical projection on the outcome. Check what he thinks after the Moses injury.

Bama Hammer Contributor, Zachary Mangum

I put out a mathematical prediction earlier this week, but as I said in that post, the mathematical model I’m using doesn’t necessarily give realistic scores. It is better suited to give spread predictions. Now we know Dylan Moses will be out for the season which will hurt the Tide’s ability to slow down the mobile Duke QB, Harris. I don’t think Moses’s absence is felt much in the opener, but Duke gets an extra score that Moses would have helped prevent. The offense will pile it on the overmatched Duke defense.

Alabama Crimson Tide 55 – Duke Blue Devils 17

Bama Hammer Contributor, Chris Dodson

With the injury to Dylan Moses and the multiple reports of first-half suspensions to some of the leadership players on this team, it certainly doesn’t bode well for Alabama to pursue National Championship No. 18. However, we can worry about this later. One game at a time.

Alabama is going to win this game. The question is this: will they win it cleanly? With the supposed lack of leadership in some ranks, you can imagine that there may be a warm-up period where Duke may be able to get some shots in.

I’m predicting the majority of the points from both teams coming in the second half.

Alabama Crimson Tide 35 – Duke Blue Devils 17

Bama Hammer Contributor, Jonathan Waldrop

Let’s not lie to ourselves. The Dylan Moses injury sucks. It really does. However, the season has yet to begin and two young, but seemingly conscientious freshmen are filling the voids left by Moses and Josh McMillon at inside linebacker.

It’s as if people forget that Tua Tagovailoa and Jerry Jeudy are still on the team. And Jaylen Waddle and Henry Ruggs III and Raekwon Davis and Anfernee Jennings and Trevon Diggs and Xavier McKinney and need I go on?

Duke HC David Cutcliffe will go after the youth in the middle of the defense, no doubt, and I think they put a serious drive or two together at the beginning of the game, but I can’t be convinced that this one is going to be anything but a runaway by the end.

Alabama Crimson Tide 45 – Duke Blue Devils 17

Bama Hammer, Lead Writer, Ronald Evans

It is a challenge to block out the bigger picture of the season and focus on just the opening game. It is also foolish to believe in that bigger picture context, starting three true freshmen in the interior of a Nick Saban defense is no big deal.

Will it matter against Duke? In terms of winning it will not. Who cares about the spread when what is of greater importance is getting through the game without any new, serious injuries.

My hope for the game is the four suspended players FULLY learn the importance of putting the team first. Why they did not already know that is beyond me.

Alabama Crimson Tide 42 – Duke Blue Devils 17

Next. A few notes on Duke and David Cutcliffe. dark

Check in with Bama Hammer Saturday night. We’ll review every little thing about the season opener.