Alabama Football: Aggies and Crimson Tide covering spreads

Mandatory Credit: Maria Lysaker-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Maria Lysaker-USA TODAY Sports /

Will Alabama football cover against the Aggies. Crimson Tide history provides clues.

Alabama football games are great fun without the necessity of having skin in the game. To some Tide fans, the games are better with a wager on the outcome. Crimson Tide bettors do not have to be ‘all-in.’ An emotional buzz comes at any risk level.

Researched opinions about game spreads are accessible to everyone. Last week I predicted Alabama football would not cover the spread against Mizzou. Being correct, if only once this season, drives another predictive attempt. My conclusions are simply gut reads of the merits of each team, on a given day.

Well-developed number crunching is better than gut reads. Bama Hammer Contributor, Zachary Mangum is very good at it, with an algorithm he designed. Last week, his Math-Based System missed on the Tide vs. Missouri game. Overall, his system is very accurate. He used it last week to predict Mississippi would beat LSU. Don’t miss his upcoming number-crunching this week.

Even though my conclusions are hunch based, I too look at numbers. The Alabama Crimson Tide history of game outcomes, compared to spread predictions is illuminating. Going back five seasons, Alabama football has covered spreads more than 53.8 percent of the time, only once. That was in the 2016 season when the Tide covered 66.7 percent of the time. The other seasons were 53.3 percent in 2015; 42.9 percent in 2017; 53.3 percent in 2018 and 53.8 percent in 2019. defines the cover percentage as “percentage of time the team covered, net of pushes.” Point outcomes equal to spreads are pushes.

Credible college football coaches care nothing about spreads. Nick Saban certainly does not. What Nick cares about is winning, the right way; developing players through game experience and not embarrassing other coaches. Nick is human. There might be a coach or two he does not worry about making look bad.

Other coaches choose to run up scores to enhance the “quality” of a win. Alabama football never has to worry about quality points.

If readers sense some delay in discussing the spread against the Aggies, I confess having no clear hunch. A spread of 17.5 – 18.5 points against a No. 13 ranked team is troubling. Surely the Aggies are not as bad as they looked against Vandy. If Jimbo delivers that kind of performance in Tuscaloosa and the Crimson Tide plays as it did in the first half at Mizzou – the result could be a four-plus touchdown spanking.

Except, we have those Saban proclivities mentioned above. Especially in a COVID-altered season, Saban needs three deep guys to be able to contribute. So far, all the necessary two-deep guys are a work-in-progress. He needs to play lots of guys against the Aggies. Bryce Young needs as much game action as possible. Paul Tyson needs snaps as do at least two more defensive linemen and three or four more offensive linemen. A capable backup corner needs to emerge and the backup safeties need playing time. All of which would drive a closer game.

Plus, the Aggies will have their backs up, wanting to atone for game one. Mond should be better with his legs and his arm. The Aggies’ wideouts should not have the same leaky fingers as last week. The Tide’s still maturing secondary could be tested. Defensive Coordinator, Mike Elko has a solid unit, who can be tough to run on.

The best reasons to believe the Tide will cover come from last week. One is the defensive looked great in the first half and poor in the second. Like the Aggies, they will look to make a statement in Tuscaloosa. Most of all, like last week, I do not believe the Aggies can cover Waddle or Smitty.

So I’m going with – Crimson Tide Covers – with a confidence level of 55 percent probability. Do not be foolish and make any wagering decisions based on this opinion.

dark. Next. Aggie Egos Bruised in College Station

Will Nick Saban pump the brakes against a former assistant? He tried against Mark Dantonio a few years ago.