Happy Friday, everyone. As you well know, Alabama has a brunch date with Steve Sarkisian and the Texas Longhorns tomorrow. Your previews:
Texas is one of the few teams in the country I believe to be capable of moving the ball and putting up points against the Alabama defense, but not enough to convince me to take the points with the Longhorns. The problems Texas had last season weren’t on the offensive side of the ball; it was a defense that allowed 31 points per game, and I need to see more from it than a strong performance against one of the worst teams in the country (ULM) last week before I trust it. Plus, as good as QB Quinn Ewers might be one day, he’s still a freshman making his second career start. The Alabama defense he’ll see this weekend plays a different sport than the defense he saw last week. It’s not hard to imagine he makes a mistake or two that proves costly to the Longhorns. Prediction: Alabama -20
Brendan Gulick: Alabama 42, Texas 24
I’m not sure I expect this game to get as ugly as others around the country are predicting, but I have no doubt Alabama is the superior team.
I’m watching this game with keen interest on Quinn Ewers’ performance. How can the incredibly hyped young phenom QB perform against easily the toughest defense he’s faced in his life to-date?
Yes, Texas will have its moments that will meltdown social media and make Gus Johnson take his game up a few octaves, but Bama will keep on coming. Texas will connect on a few big plays. Alabama will connect on all the little ones, and for a full 60 minutes.
It’ll keep Robinson bottled up, the running game will take over in the third quarter, and Bryce Young will come up with an ultra-efficient, workmanlike performance with two excellent scoring marches in the second half to end any dreams of this being when Texas becomes Texas again.
Alabama 41, Texas 20
Crawford: (Alabama -20) — I hit on last week’s lock of the week with Arkansas -6.5 against Cincinnati and I’ll hammer a different SEC team this week in non-conference action. I like Alabama in this game because I think the Crimson Tide are going to play with flawless execution compared to what we’ll see from the Longhorns. Alabama is used to the spotlight, The Crimson Tide have been in these hyped matchups. Not Texas. Quinn Ewers’ second career start against arguably the best defense in the country? I’m OK with spotting Texas 20 points and taking Alabama to cover. ... Alabama 49, Texas 17.
There’s high-end talent on both sides of the field in this one. It’s just that most of Alabama’s talent has either won a national title (in 2020) or played for one in 2021, including a Heisman Trophy winner (QB Bryce Young) and a Heisman finalist (Will Anderson).
But, make no mistake, the pressure is all on Bama to handle business, so Texas should be going for broke.
Alabama 45, Texas 38
We will see how far Texas has really progressed from last season’s disaster. There is exactly zero chance that Nick Saban runs up the score on Sark regardless of opportunity. Each team has one game against a Group of Five team thus far. Alabama gained more yards per play and allowed substantially fewer yards per play against what was likely a far superior opponent.
More importantly, Quinn Ewers will be making his second college start while facing down the most ferocious and experienced pass rush in the game. It’s honestly tough to imagine a scenario where Ewers outduels Bryce Young but, well, Saban says it best:
“The last time we were 20-point favorites and went to Texas, we got our ass kicked,” Saban said referring to Texas A&M last October. Alabama was an 18-point favorite when the Aggies pulled the upset.
If Saban is saying that on the radio, you can bet that the message has been delivered all week. It will be somewhat amusing if a loss to Texas A&M is what drives Alabama to stomp Texas. Look for Alabama to come in focused and firing on all cylinders. Let’s call it 48-17, but of course that is merely my opinion. Vote and give us yours in the comments.
What will be the result of Alabama at Texas?
This poll is closed
Sark briefly wishes he could come back then remembers his salary, Tide by 21+
Bevo is barbecued but the Horns keep it respectable, Alabama by 11-20
Closer than shitkickers at a line dance, Alabama by 1-10
The mullet becomes an instant legend, Texas pulls the shocker
Sark is pleading with the locals to show up and show out.
Texas coach Steve Sarkisian to his fanbase vs. Alabama: "I know this, they’re going to have an impact on the game. And we need our fans to be loud. We need our fans to be energetic. We need our fans to be raucous."— Brian Davis (@BDavisAAS) September 8, 2022
Michael Casagrande examines the difference between the two programs since that Rose Bowl back in 2010.
Texas has fired three coaches in the past decade-plus — including Mack Brown, the architect of the run that effectively ended in Pasadena. This was an era that saw the launch of their own cable network, flirted with trying to lure Saban from Tuscaloosa and lost 67 of the 151 football games they played.
The chasm between the two programs is striking in a few key metrics.
Where Alabama’s had 109 players drafted since 2010, Texas had 38.
First-round picks: Alabama 39, Texas 3.
The last first-rounder who played offense at Texas? Vince Young in 2006.
And in a span when Alabama won six national titles, Texas averaged six losses a year.
Alex Scarbrough put out a great Bryce Young longform.
Maybe one day, Young will let himself off the hook for one subpar performance. At some point in the future, he imagines, he’ll allow himself to sit back and revel in his accomplishments. Maybe he’ll move the trophies out of his parents’ house and in with him.
But that day isn’t today. His whirlwind offseason was fun, but sitting in Atlanta weeks ahead of the season, he’s itching to put all of the trappings of celebrity aside and play football again.
His life changed since New York, but his main goal never did: win a national championship.
Whatever happens after that, he’s ready.
Last, this isn’t football related but good humor is good humor. The Today Show made quite a gaffe in transitioning from one story to another, then the internet took over and, well, you can watch the rest.
"We've been waiting a long time for this, haven't we?" indeed. pic.twitter.com/oXqyLEsdEh— Timothy Burke (@bubbaprog) September 9, 2022
Folks, that is spectacular.
That’s about it for today. Have a great weekend.