Video Courtesy Scott Griffin Tide and Tiger
Sophomore Sensation Jalen Hurst played a stellar game. In Alabama, it is always about the defense and how they shut down the opposing team’s offense, that they did at every critical point of the game. LSU played perhaps their best game of the year. Unfortunately, it was overshadowed by perhaps the best team in college football. Some will argue for Georgia considering that is where the College Football Committee has anointed them in their initial rankings. No shade intended. One could flip a coin and go with either side considering the awesome performance the DAWGS put together earlier between the famous hedges against the Gamecocks to win the SEC EAST.
Sometimes I guess you have to choose somebody other than BAMA to stir the conversation of who is the real #1. The stage may be set for a showdown for the SEC Championship in the new Mercedes Benz Stadium to determine just that featuring #1 against #2 in the country. Should that occur, we might have a repeat in the National Championship game in the same building.
Before the game, if you had told LSU Head Coach Ed Orgeron his team would outrush Alabama 150 yards to 116. Earn more total yards 306 to 299. Dominate the second quarter converting 4 of 6 third-down opportunities keep the ball for twelve minutes, which contributed to their total time of possession 34:07 to Alabama’s 25:53. They would force six three-n-outs. He would have said his team would win the game.
Maybe that is how things go in other parts of the country, but not in Tuscaloosa, where it does not matter how long you have the ball, it’s where you can stuff it. Moreover, that is not in the end zone for points.
Alabama started the scoring with a statement a 9 play 90-yard scoring drive that featured Jalen Hurts in the role of Whodini escaping pressure to pick up first downs. The key play was a 47-yard pass to Henry Ruggs. Irv Smith sat down between defenders to catch the simple 4-yard toss.
At the end of one, there was some hitting going on including a little scrum and up close-n-personal chatting.
Early in the second quarter, the defense reared its ugly head when Ronnie Harrison manhandled the ball away from Derrius Guise who did not run the best of routes for the games first turnover. The play earned him the championship belt. Four plays later the Bo ran it in from 9 yards out. Suddenly the hole was seven feet deeper, 14-0 BAMA. LSU found themselves in the worst spot possible behind on the scoreboard facing the #1 defense in just about every statistical category in the country.
DJ Clark the LSU wide receiver made a spectacular 360 catch to get his team in scoring position. They got deep into the red zone but ran into a ROLLING TIDE that forced a field goal to complete the 13 play 71-yard drive. The good news they were successful on two third down conversions which were considered character building.
The first half featured that little squirmish, but other than that Alabama deflected any and all threats from the Tigers even though they converted on 6-10 third downs to cruise into halftime 14-3.
QB Danny Etling started the second half a bit gun shy. He had happy feet, but who would not when you are standing in the middle of a warzone called a pocket with eight three hundred pound battle tanks rotating in and out to stay freshly tuned. All he knew was from the ground they all looked the same with different numbers. And the ball was going over on downs again.
Ridley came up with a great catch and run, but a holding penalty negated it from the spot of the foul which brought them back 40 yards. All that meant was they had to do it again. Another pass to Ridley put them back in scoring position at the 3-yard line. Then Jaylen Hurt’em up the middle on a keeper for the touchdown. The Tide was ROLLING 21-3.
LSU was in need of a big play that’s exactly what D Williams delivered taking the ball out of the WILD TIGER instead of the wildcat on the direct snap. He dazzled for 54 yards down to the two-yard line. They tried to throw it in but were unsuccessful, so they went back to the workhorse Williams who barreled in for the touchdown.
To start the final stretch, the score was 21-10 in favor of Alabama, and they had the ball with the intent of putting the game away. LSU forced them to settle for a 40-yard field goal which gave them a two-touchdown lead.
The boys from the bayou did their best to make it interesting, but Da’Ron Payne and Dylan Moses scheduled a meeting at the quarterback Etling was sacked for a 12-yard loss. From there it was a matter of running out the clock. Alabama did get a challenge experiencing four three-n-outs but rolled on to win 24-10 to potentially set up the showdown at the palace against Georgia for the SEC Championship.