Bo Scarbrough is finally healthy. He’s been plagued by injuries since he arrived on campus, but that never stopped the hype train. With the departure of Derrick Henry, that train really picked up steam. However, it was Damien Harris who emerged as the team’s #1 running back; and, after the opener against USC, Scarbrough didn’t hit double digit carries until the LSU game in November.
He was injured again in that victory and sat the next two games. That time off apparently let him get fully healthy, however; and he has 47 carries for 361 yards (a mere 7.7 yards/carry) and 4 touchdowns with his best performance by far coming against Washington.
3rd and 2: Alabama has responded well after Washington’s touchdown drive. The Tide reeled off four first downs by four different players in just five plays. Damien Harris started the drive, but Scarbrough is in now and has 15 yards on 2 carries. Facing the first third down of the drive, the offense goes back to the pistol. Interestingly, Hurts has handed it off to a running back on every play out of the pistol this drive; and that’s just what will happen again.
Gehrig Dieter, O.J. Howard, and Calvin Ridley are bunched tight on the left. The line blocks right, but the play is designed to go to the left. The middle linebacker follows the line at first, taking him several steps out of the play. Dieter blocks his man, and Scarbrough shoots through the hole between Cam Robinson and him. He moves left to avoid the Mike coming back towards him. This brings him straight into the safety, who has come down and avoided Howard. The two collide; and Scarbrough wins that battle, staying up and keeping his feet churning. The corner and other safety attempt to stop him, but Bo will not be denied as he stretches the ball across the goalline.
1st and 10: Hurts is under center, and Scarbrough is the lone setback. It’s just an inside zone to the right, but Scarbrough displays some nice vision here. He sees one linebacker filling the hole and the other over-pursuing. So he cuts it to the backside, bumping into Ross Pierschbacher in the process. His progress stalled, he quickly gets going again. If not for Washington safety Budda Baker making an excellent diving grab to bring him down, Scarbrough likely gains a first down at the least.
3rd and 9: After Jake Browning’s punt - his second best play of the game - Alabama is facing a third and long from its own 3 yard line. I think most people were expecting another run to gain a few extra yards for J.K. Scott. Bo Scarbrough had other plans.
Hurts is in shotgun with Scarbrough on his right hip and Howard at H-back. It’s a counter with Korren Kirven and Howard pulling to the left. Kirven takes out the massive defensive lineman Elijah Qualls, and Howard neutralizes Budda Baker. Scarbrough bursts through the line, hurdles an attempted tackle, and picks up the first down.
2nd and 9: Two plays later, Lane Kiffin will go back to Scarbrough. Alabama has 11 personnel out of the pistol with Miller Forristall as the H-back. It’s simple outside zone to the left. Cam Robinson catches a break as his man goes inside instead outside, allowing Robinson to seal him off. Huskies DL Greg Gaines does his darnedest to blow this play up, fighting through both Bradley Bozeman and and Pierschbacher. Gaines hits Scarbrough in the backfield, but he makes the mistake of hitting Scarbrough high. Scarbrough bounces out of the attempted tackle to the outside where he’s immediately hit by the cornerback, who does go low. He somehow doesn’t go down, and he transitions to a sprint down the field.
Scarbrough dodges a diving Sidney Jones then outruns the safety’s leaping hands. The fallen safety, plus Calvin Ridley, take out of the pursuing linebacker; and Scarbrough races down the sideline. ArDarius Stewart has, of course, already started tracking defenders to find one to take out. Scarbrough lets off the gas and uses Stewart as a shield, cutting back to the middle of the field, which spins Budda Baker and leaves him on the ground. Just to guarantee things, Dieter comes flying up out of nowhere to block the remaining defender; and Scarbrough trots into the endzone after an improbable 68 yard touchdown scamper. He accounted for 77 of the Tide’s 98 yards on this drive and killed any dreams Husky fans may have had of a comeback.