Kneauxing the Enemy 2021 Alabama
Record 7-1, 4-1 SEC
by Bryan Follins
This Saturday, the Tigers have the unenviable task of spoiling Alabama’s march to the SEC West title. They will encounter a team which averages 494 total yards per game, and 6.78 yards per play on offense. The Tide is tenth in the nation in total offense. They are second in the land in scoring offense, averaging 45.9 points per game.
The transfer effect:
Junior wide receiver Jameson Williams, the second leading receiver in the SEC, is a transfer from Ohio State.
Junior linebacker Henry To’o To’o, the team’s defensive signal caller, and leading tackler, is a transfer from Tennessee.
The Alabama offense is guided by sophomore Bryce Young, a seemingly unflappable fellow, who has 26 touchdown passes so far this year, good for fourth in the country. He has thrown for 2453 yards, tenth in the nation. He has a 70 percent completion percentage, eleventh in the land.
Junior wide receivers Jameson Williams and John Metchie are Young’s primary passing targets. Williams has 710 yards receiving and six touchdowns this season. Metchie has 601 yards in receptions and five touchdowns this year. Williams, the second leading receiver in the league, averages 20 yards per catch, and Metchie averages 11.5 yards per grab. The thing which makes these two very dangerous, is the yards they gain after they catch the football.
Senior Brian Robinson is fourth in the SEC in rushing, with 706 yards. He averages 4.9 yards per carry.
The Alabama offensive line is anchored by Chris Owens, a six-year graduate student and returning starter. Owens is the right tackle. Junior Evan Neal, the left tackle, is also a returning starter. Like Owens, he has played multiple positions on the offensive line during his career at Alabama.
The Tide offensive line has allowed 18 sacks so far this year.
Alabama has a good rushing defense, allowing 89 yards per game on the ground, on 2.9 yards per carry. Their pass defense is not as good, allowing 219 yards per game. Alabama’s pass defense, as usual, dares teams to throw the ball, and if the opponent throws well against them, they can move the ball. In Alabama’s only loss to Texas A&M, the Aggies passed for 285 yards against the Tide. In a 49-9 win against Mississippi State, the Tide’s pass defense yielded 300 yards.
Sophomore outside linebacker Will Anderson is tied for fifth in the nation in sacks with nine. Anderson has 15.5 tackles-for-losses (tfls) as well, which leads the country. Junior linebacker Christian Harris has been recently named as a Butkus semi-finalist. Junior linebacker Henry To’o To’o leads the team in tackles with 37, 22 unassisted.
The Alabama contest is a daunting challenge for the Purple and Gold. The Tigers will have to show a better effort than the Ole Miss game, or they will be thoroughly embarrassed. It will be imperative for the offense to score, like in the Florida game. If not, the Tigers will have to play their best defensive game in a long, long time.