Alabama Football: Three Realistic Expectations for Alabama in 2020

(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /
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Alabama Football
(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /

Falling short last fall, what are realistic expectations for Alabama Football in ’20

Alabama football fell short of its expectations last season. The team won ten games and finished ranked eighth in the country, but it is not the Alabama standard. Below are three realistic expectations for the Crimson Tide this fall.

Alabama football is the gleaming, 24 karat gold standard of college football glory for the past decade. Rugged, hard-nosed, “make his ass quit” defense developed into its calling card. Since Jeremy Pruitt’s departure for the smoky mountains of Tennessee to become their head coach, the stone-cold defense has ceased to exist.

In Pete Golding’s first season, the defense displayed chinks in the armor, finishing sixteenth in total defense. In the championship game against Clemson, the defense appeared overmatched and unprepared.

In the two Tide losses last season, the defense allowed 94 points and 1,472 total yards. If a poll was conducted on which Alabama coach should face the chopping block, all fingers would point towards Golding. Saban didn’t flinch and retained the young coordinator, expecting to pay off huge dividends.

The much-anticipated return of Dylan Moses will spearhead the change needed on defense. True freshmen Shane Lee and Christian Harris manned the middle of a complex NFL-like defensive system to replace Moses.

Growing pains were expected.

Both players had roller coaster years, but being thrown into the fray early will pay significant dividends this season.

The Alabama run defense finished 37th nationally, allowing 137 yards on the ground. The Crimson Tide prides itself on stopping the run after leading the nation in run yardage in 2017, but in the last two seasons (2018-21st) the defense is spiraling downward.

The return of a healthy redshirt junior LaBryan Ray (who only played in three games due to a lower leg injury), sophomore DJ Dale, and a slew of top-notch newcomers on the defensive line will help in shutting down the running game.

The additions of David Ballou and Dr. Matt Rhea as strength and conditioning coaches, plus not having spring practice, prevented any injuries from occurring. Hopefully, when fall camp begins, the three-year string of devastating injuries to defensive players will cease.