Colorado State vs. Alabama Early Preview
The Rams want to flex their muscles against the best program in the country.
The Rams stand to be very good, but are they good enough to shock the college football world to beat the Tide?
Colorado State’s first true road game of the season will see head coach Mike Bobo’s team travel into the deep south to take on the top-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide. The Tide came within a second of winning their 12th national championship a year ago and, while they lost their customary allotment of players to the NFL, they still return plenty of talented players and look to make yet another run to a title.
Alabama head coach Nick Saban goes into this season with a returning starter under center for the first time since 2013. Sophomore Jalen Hurts is one of six starters who return on the offensive side of the ball. As for the vaunted Crimson Tide defense, they lost seven players to the NFL Draft but reload with a new crop of prospects led by defensive lineman De’Ron Payne and linebacker Rashaan Evans.
The last time Colorado State ventured down to Alabama, they walked out saddled with a 31-6 loss back in 2013. They did, however, hold Alabama to 66 yards rushing. If they can contain Hurts and limit the turnovers, then they should be able to keep this game close for at least a half. In the end, Alabama has too many weapons and the game is in Tuscaloosa.
Location: Tuscaloosa, Alabama
Mascot: Big Al
Head coach: Nick Saban. 205-61-1 overall, 114-19 at Alabama. For any other program, the Crimson Tide’s 2016 would be an unqualified success. For ‘Bama, it’s another story entirely.
Conference: SEC (West Division)
2016 Record: 14-1, 9-0 in conference; lost in College Football Playoff championship to Clemson, 35-31
Date: September 16, 2017
Time: 5:00 PM MST/4:00 PM PST
QB Jalen Hurts
Hurts is the first returning starter at quarterback for Alabama since A.J. McCarron. The dual threat sophomore rushed for over 1,100 yards last year and threw for over 2,700. He adds a dynamic to the Crimson Tide offense that it hasn’t really ever had, making the other weapons on that side of the ball even more dangerous. He will still be getting used to new offensive coordinator Brian Daboll, but he is the best quarterback in the SEC and possibly the country.
NG Da’Ron Payne
Payne is one of the better defensive linemen in the SEC and anchors the line. He can clog up the middle making it incredibly difficult to run between the tackles.
As long as Nick Saban is at Alabama, they are going to be contenders for the national championship year in and year out. While they have to replace multiple players who moved on to the next level, Saban will do what he always does: Reload with newer and in some cases more talented players.
Alabama has too many weapons and is much deeper than Colorado State. Throw in some late September Alabama humidity and the Tide will pull away from Rams in the second half.
Alabama 38, Colorado State 13.