Alabama Football: Nick Saban is 21-0 against his former assistants. Don’t expect that undefeated streak to end with Kirby Saturday night.
I know.. the Alabama football defense against Ole Miss was dreadful. It was certainly one of- if not the worst defensive performance the Tide has ever given under Saban’s tenure. Some of that can be attributed to Kiffin’s game plan. The man is an offensive wizard. Most, however, was the result of poor tackling and missed assignments with a lack of discipline. Kiffin’s offense just exploited that weakness.
Ironically, Kiffin has himself to thank for the offense he could not stop last night. Kiffin was the mastermind that took the Alabama offense on a complete 180° when he joined the staff several years ago. The change he created was the very reason he lost the game. Alabama’s offense cannot be stopped.
Let’s look forward a week. Alabama faces the biggest game of the season against third-ranked Georgia. Saban must face another one of his former assistants in Kirby Smart. Kirby has recreated the Alabama of the past with the suffocating defense and an offense that just gets by.
Yes, those Alabama teams he has modeled Georgia after were phenomenal. Several championships were won during that time frame. But, college football is drastically different now than it was ten years ago. The game is faster, and even the best defenses struggle with high-powered, quick-scoring, balanced offenses.
Even the legendary 2016 Alabama defense struggled with the Ole Miss and Clemson offenses.
Georgia does not have that type of offense. They have a quarterback in Stetson Bennett who can make decent throws. Their star wide receiver is George Pickens, who will be the Tide’s main concern. They do not have the type of misdirection that Ole Miss has. Georgia’s offense is far more conventional, and thus, shouldn’t cause nearly the challenge that Ole Miss did.
Will the Alabama Football team blow out the Dawgs? No chance. The Georgia defense is as good as advertised. Will Steve Sarkisian have a game plan to find success? Absolutely. Even the touted Georgia defense will struggle to slow down the Tide offense. They likely will be playing on their heels frequently.
The talk several years ago was always “can Saban’s lights-out defense handle these fast-paced passing offenses?” Now the roles have reversed, and the same must be asked of Kirby’s defense. I think the answer is no.
I do believe it’s time for Saban to find a new defensive coordinator, but that’s a story for a different day. For now, Bama fans, take a deep breath. This game simply won’t be the shootout the last game was.
Times are changing, but even Kiffin believes Alabama Football is the number one team in the nation. Not all is lost yet.