I have a few thoughts on last nights game that i wanted to share with the only Alabama fans i know. My true family!!!
Ill start off with some great quotes and stats from this article on ESPN
"I am really proud of this team and how it competed," Saban said. "It was a great win for our team. I'm happy for our team. But we got to learn how to play with consistency."
However, a few minutes later, when someone suggested the adjective "unbelievable" to describe Alabama's dominance, he said softly, "It really was."
"We got whipped about every way you get whipped," Clemson coach Tommy Bowden said. "… I don't think we've been beat that bad physically probably in three years."
"Maybe we can cover that (No.) 88 by next week sometime," Bowden said, referring to Walker, a 6-foot-5, 248-pound senior.
"Those are the kind of things," Saban said, referring to the kickoff, "that maybe we would melt down on the past. Maybe something bad would happen. People would flatten out. … When you respond to adversity like we did tonight, that's the sign of being a good competitor."
"We kept hearing, 'Best team in the ACC,'" said Alabama tight end Nick Walker, who caught seven passes for 67 yards and a touchdown. "It didn't faze us at all."
• Alabama had 80 snaps to Clemson's 48 and held the ball for 41:13.
• Alabama ran the ball 43 times without losing a yard, a streak that lasted into the game's 52nd minute. The Tide finished with 239 rushing yards on 50 carries.
• Alabama committed no turnovers and forced two.
• Tide quarterback John Parker Wilson, rarely pressured, completed 22-of-30 passes for 180 yards and two touchdowns.
- That first quote from Saban made me smile. What i like about Saban is that he doesn't let his guys think they are perfect. He will always tell them there is more to work on, that they can always be better. Thats the mindset of a Champion!
- Biggest surprise of the night to me was our kicker Leigh Tiffin. That 54 yard FG was a tough kick. He almost connected on another one later in the game. I know it was in a dome but im feeling much better about our kicking game after last night. I do have one question. WHY WERE WE KICKING THE BALL TO SPILLER ALL NIGHT??? that was driving me crazy!
- Mark Ingram is going to be a freaking MAN BEAST !!! The dude is a true freshman! I lost count somewhere in third quarter of how many Clemson defenders he just straight ran over!
- Julio is going to be special but with the amount of WR and TE we will be throwing to, im not sure he's going to have to put up HUGE numbers for us to be effective.
- Our offense looked good but i still have some concerns. Wilson looked bad on the deep ball and really only threw one that even looked close. I love the short and intermediate passing game but at some point we are going to have stretch the field.
- The running game was just amazing. I haven't seen that kind of dominating performance of a quality opponent in the trenches since the UF game in '05. But where was Grant? I guess the tandom of Ingram, Coffee and UpChurch was too much for him. Hmm its kinda sad.
- Speaking of Wilson, i think the light finally came on. Sure he didn't look good throwing deep but he was in control the entire night. There were moments when he felt pressure and either found the dump off man, or ran it for a positive gain. The play that made me go, wow this kid gets it, was a screen pass he threw in the 2nd half. It was just a simple screen to the short side of the field but what impressed me was his patience. He waited and waited and waited and right before he got hit he threw it to i beleive Coffee for a first down. Last year he would have freaked out when seeing the pressure and threw it away or took the sack. If he plays like that all year, im might just wet myself. Correct me if im wrong but i didn't see a pass all night that i thought could have or should have been picked off. Thats something i thought i would never say.
- Our defense is something else. We are young, fast, big, strong, we made very vew mistakes, we swarmed to the football and made Clemson just look silly. From the first play our d-line dominated. Cody was getting about a 3-4 yards push into their back field on a consistent basis. The nice thing was that our LB's name were rarely even called because our d-line was so freakin awesome!! Heres a stat for you. Rolondo Mclain only had 3 tackles all night! If that doesn't speak volumes then i don't know would. Did anyone notice how R. Johnson looked a little lost or a step behind a few times. He dropped 2 INT's, took a really bad angle on a quick slant in the 1st half, and just seemed a little lost. Maybe im being harsh but something looked off to me.
- IMO that Clemson team we just ripped apart was a very good football team. They have depth, talent and leadership across the board. We just hit them from the first play and didn't stop all night. Im not sure HOW good they were but i believe they are better than MSU, Ole Miss, Arkansas, USC, Vandy, and perhaps a few more teams in the SEC.
Take away the kickoff returned for a TD and we won that game 34-3. Thats just unreal. Im glad my prediction of a 31-17, 31-28 win for Clemson was wrong. It wasn't that i didn't believe i just felt we were one year away from this type of performance. But Heirbsteet said it perfectly in the 4rh quarter im paraphrasing " Im not buying into this 'We don't have depth' talk from Alabama, every time you turn around another player (freshman) is making a first down, putting pressure on the QB, or making a big tackle" And that was so true. There were so many new faces on defense it was hard to keep up.
My prediction for the rest of the season is this. 9-3. Right now its hard to tell how good of a performance that was. Was it because Clemson is just really bad and we exposed them or becuase we are just THAT good? Only time will tell. I just don't think that our d-line will be able to dominate like that against the better SEC o-lines. UGA's, UT, The Barn or LSU's front 5 is no Clemson and none aren replacing 4 starters. None the less this was a great performance and a great way to start the season.....
On to the next victim!!
ROLL TIDE ROLL!!!!