Preview 2018: Previewing and looking ahead to the Alabama Crimson Tide season with what you need to know.
Preview 2018: Alabama Crimson Tide
– What You Need To Know: Offense | Defense
– Top Players, Key Game, Fun Stats
– What Will Happen & Win Total Prediction
– Recruiting Class Analysis | Schedule Analysis
– Alabama Previews 2017 | 2016 | 2015
Other than, maybe, Ohio State, no one else gets into last year’s College Football Playoff with Alabama’s regular season.
And why? Because it’s Bama.
Confirmed by all the massive coaching changes, it was a mediocre year in the SEC, with most of the good records coming from teams that beat on other SEC teams.
The Crimson Tide struggled too much against an okay Texas A&M, wasn’t anything special against LSU and Mississippi State, and suffered a regular season ending double-digit loss to Auburn. Of course, they didn’t win the SEC championship because they didn’t even win their own division.
And then they caught an all-timer of a break.
If Wisconsin had finished off its final drive against Ohio State in the Big Ten Championship with a touchdown, it’s in the CFP, and Alabama is out.
No conference championship. No division title. No truly impressive wins, and a regular season finish with a struggle and a loss. Even at 11-1, does Kentucky get into the CFP if it had the exact same season? How about Iowa, or Kansas State, or even Miami or Washington?
But the College Football Playoff committee made a call.
Because it’s Bama.
And it was right.
Under Nick Saban, the Crimson Tide keep proving themselves worthy of every benefit of every doubt.
Love them or hate them, going seven years in a row with just six regular season losses – one per season except for 2016 – is as impressive as any run in the history of college football.
Even more amazing, despite always having the target on their back and playing in the SEC West, they’ve lost no more than once in 11 of the last 12 regular seasons, and 13 of the last 15.
So for all the screaming and yelling about The Process vs. the process of the CFP selection last season, all the data, all the numbers, and all the talking points were pushed aside.
Because it’s Bama.
It has already made the first four of these CFP things, won two, and came within a defensive stop/pick play of probably making it three. And now, if this team plays up to its talent level, it’s a slam dunk to go five-for-five at getting into the final four.
Good luck seeing that again for a long, long time, if ever again.
A ton of key new parts have to rise up on defense, and a few young players have to be amazing on offense, but almost everyone else would kill to have the problems the 2018 Crimson Tide have to deal with.
Yeah, the D line needs a little reworking, but whatever. It was dominant at times this spring, and it’ll be amazing again … because it’s Bama.
The secondary loses a special group, including Minkah Fitzpatrick and Ronnie Harrison. The depth is a big concern, and it’ll take a few new recruits to be ready right away, but there aren’t any major worries … because it’s Bama.
There’s a quarterback situation with no wrong answer between Jalen Hurts and Tua Tagovailoa, both coordinators have to be replaced, and a whole slew of last year’s freshmen skill players have to be this year’s dominant sophomores. But the O should be even more effective and more explosive … because it’s Bama.
It’ll take a meltdown on the Tide’s part and/or a few epic days from some inferior teams to keep them out of the SEC Championship and another trip to the College Football Playoff. But don’t take this all for granted.
Dynasties eventually end. At some point, there will be two regular season losses again. There will be a season when the five-star, NFL-caliber recruits don’t all rise up and rock, and there will be a time when The Process isn’t enough to stop some other worthy team from coming through on that one final drive.
But until that actually happens, you know exactly what’s coming.
Because it’s …