The 2018 spring college football rankings, taking the first look at the Alabama Crimson Tide.
No. 2: Alabama Crimson Tide
Spring Practice Starts: March 20
Spring Game: April 21
Alabama Crimson Tide Spring Status
Okay, great. Now keep it all going.
The schedule isn’t bad, the talent is amazing – as always – and the expectation is national title-or-failure, but is it possible to continue to set the bar this unreasonably high?
Yeah, and maybe be even better.
The key parts of last year’s national championship win? Underclassmen. And now the skill guys are loaded, even after losing some of the stars.
The defense has to replace the entire secondary, and the Das are gone from the line – Payne and Hand – but come on. It’s Alabama. It’s built to replace national championship talents with more national championship talents.
This should be a more wide open offensive team depending on how the quarterback situation shakes out, the receivers are going to be great, and the coaching – even with all of the shuffling – will once again be peerless.
Again, that’s all super. Now do it again. And win the SEC title this time.
Alabama Biggest Depth Chart Battle
Safety. The quarterback situation will be fine – there will probably be a situational rotation between Jalen Hurts and Tua Tagovailoa. However, losing Minkah Fitzpatrick and Ronnie Harrison is a big, big issue, even for Alabama.
Delonte Thompson and Xavier McKinney are promising talents – and there are others ready to get their shot to show what they can do – but Harrison led the team in tackles, and Fitzpatrick has NFL Hall of Fame upside.
Alabama Biggest Issue
Third down consistency. The Crimson Tide offense was hardly awful on third downs, converting almost 41% of the time, but when it didn’t get the job done, there was a problem.
Bama was under 30% four times times – Florida State, the close call against Texas A&M, the loss to Auburn, and the national title game against Georgia. It struggled against Mississippi State (30%) and LSU (36%), too. There’s no reason for an offense with this talent to not live at around 50%.
Alabama Biggest Positive
The skill guys. Dog Jalen Hurts for his mediocre passing skills all you want, but the guy was a play away from being a two-time national championship starting quarterback. He’s good enough to get the start again, Tagovailoa is obviously a fantastic talent, and that’s just the start for the Bama weapons.
Damien Harris coming back helps, and now he’ll rotate with Najee Harris and Josh Jacobs. National title hero DeVonta Smith joins Jerry Jeudy and Henry Ruggs as the sophomore receivers, and Irv Smith is ready to do more at tight end.
Really, Why Are The Alabama Crimson Tide Ranked Here?
There’s just enough missing to keep the Crimson Tide to be the No. 1, but that’s splitting hairs. They’ll be in the College Football Playoff – again – and they’ll be the odds-on favorite to win the national title – again.
Think of it this way. Alabama will be Alabama again, but with a better offense. Uh oh.