Happy Monday, everyone. Per usual, Michael Casagrande has some wrap up for you.
— Alabama has 31 runs on third downs needing 1-3 yards for the first down. It converted 16 times (51.6%) and is 4-for-10 picking up first downs on fourth down runs. It was 31 of 42 (73.8%) on third-and-short a year ago.
— For the TV heads out there, if you were curious about how CBS got some of its high-angle shots, it flew a drone over the stadium that hovered behind one of the end zones when not going live. They provide some cool low angle, overhead shots.
— Freshman LB Dallas Turner, a five-star prospect, has 4.5 sacks in the past four games after getting 1.5 at Auburn.
A week earlier, it cut through Arkansas for 671 total yards as Bryce Young broke a 52-year-old school record with 559 passing yards.
That Arkansas defense is ranked 58th nationally.
Auburn is 57th.
The six-win Tigers had six total sacks in its three-game losing streak it carried into the game and seven of Young on Saturday.
Rivalries are something.
Turner, of course, was also called for an absurd roughing the passer call, but he keeps improving. It will be imperative that Alabama sets the edge and gets after the passer on Saturday, and the OLBs play a huge role in both.
Playoffs? We’re talking about playoffs?
Oklahoma State moved up two spots after beating Oklahoma for the first time since 2014. The Sooners fell three places to No. 13.
Now, maybe we get some unexpected results. It is possible that Michigan, Oklahoma State or Cincinnati lose, and possibly more than one of them. Alabama could get blown out by Georgia or pull the upset.
There is also the very real possibility that chalk holds in the conference title games, and Alabama’s seventh-ranked passing attack presents problems for Georgia. It hasn’t seen an offense anything like the Crimson Tide’s this year.
This would create an extremely difficult decision: The better team or the better résumé?
The general consensus at this point is that a two-loss Bama is out, and I tend to agree with that sentiment. In that scenario, the Big 12 champion will likely be in no matter who wins, and one-loss Notre Dame lurks. For Alabama to even enter the conversation it would require Michigan losing to Iowa along with a Cincinnati loss to Houston. No need to sugarcoat the fact that, while they did win all of the games, Alabama failed the eye test miserably in November.
Guess they just have to beat Georgia, eh?
An interesting but unlikely scenario:
- Alabama blows out Georgia
- Michigan blows out Iowa
- Cincinnati blows out Houston
- Oklahoma State blows out Baylor
Who gets left out at that point?
In any case, Brian Robinson’s status is up in the air for Saturday. Needless to say, missing him would make things incredibly difficult, as if they wouldn’t have been already. As of now, the line is Georgia +6.5.
Elsewhere, Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley is leaving for USC, and the Sooners’ recruiting class immediately took a major hit.
Five-star quarterback Malachi Nelson, the No. 3-ranked football prospect in the ESPN Junior 300 for the class of 2023, decommitted from Oklahoma on Sunday night, one of four commitments the Sooners lost in the hours following the news that Lincoln Riley had accepted the head-coaching job at USC.
Nelson, out of Los Alamitos High School in California, committed to Oklahoma in July but wrote on Twitter that he was decommitting “in light of the recent events and changes.”
Riley managed to piss off not only Oklahoma’s fanbase, but also an anxious LSU contingent who had convinced themselves he was coming to Baton Rouge. That was never happening.
I’ve heard multiple times that Lincoln Riley was not a fan of Oklahoma going to the SEC. That is the reason he is leaving Oklahoma for USC.— George Wrighster III (@georgewrighster) November 28, 2021
Quite simply, Lincoln Riley is a coward who seeks an easy path to a New Year’s Six bowl. Sad.
Oh, Josh Heupel may pull a Lane Kiffin and bolt Knoxville for his alma mater, which would be hilarious.
Last, Alabama players are dominating in the NFL not only on the field, but in the merchandise sales department.
Chalk this up in the non-so-breaking-news-department: Alabama football players are popular.
Fanatics jerseys have been flying off the shelves all season and among the most popular jersey sales are the usual culprits: Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, Lamar Jackson and Josh Allen. But there’s a trio of former Crimson Tide studs among the top sellers as we head into the holiday season in Mac Jones, Najee Harris and DeVonta Smith.
Get all you can, men.
That’s about it for today. Have a great week.