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My name is Eric. My love of and loyalty to the University of Alabama football team is unparalleled and completely inappropriate. I hate all other teams, and wish them peril. Also, you can hear my music at www.reverbnation.com/EricBlackerby or www.youtube.com/EricBlackerbyMusic

Friday, September 30, 2011

Alabama-Florida Preview

After the Arkansas game, and the way our defense so thoroughly dominated one of the best offenses in the country, alot of people are wanting to anoint the Tide as surefire National Championship contenders. And while we are definitely one of the top 5 teams in the country, and in my opinion one of the top 3 most likely to win it all, I think we should remember a few things

Last year, Alabama annihilated the Gators in Tuscaloosa, 31-6, and everyone immediately jumped on the bandwagon and said that Alabama AGAIN had the best team in the country. 

Paul Finebaum was first in line to get on the bus. Reading THIS is sure to piss off most Tide fans, in hindsight

We got WAY too far ahead of ourselves, and believed we were unstoppable. And while I still believe we were the most talented team in the country, we probably believed a little too much of the hype before we promptly went to Columbia, SC and got shown the door by the Gamecocks.

This is a similar situation. We are just coming off a beatdown of a top team, and we are going on the road to face the Gators this year. Alot of people, like myself, expect Alabama to win this game, and fairly easily. But let's not get ahead of ourselves, because Florida is a better team this year than last. Will Muschamp is in his first year as head coach, which usually would spell trouble for most teams, but offensive coordinator Charlie Weis is doing some things with that offense that I think are gonna pose more of a threat to opposing defenses this year than whatever it was that Florida was trying to pull of last year. 

John Brantley is more comfortable in the pocket. Jeff Demps and Chris Rainey are being their usual explosive selves thus far, and are definitely a concern.

For most teams

The thing that people don't seem to realize is that the last two times Alabama played Florida, those two were on the field.

For a Florida perspective on how they have fared against Bama's D, CLICK HERE

Everyone knows that Will Muschamp learned alot of what he knows from Nick Saban. Muschamp was Saban's defensive coordinator at LSU, as well as with the Miami Dolphins. So there is somewhat of a teacher-student dynamic at play here. Muschamp was asked about that this week.

You can see his hilarious response HERE. Star Wars fans will dig the reference

Personally, I do think we will win this game, but I think there are alot of unknowns. The game is in Gainesville. And this time, we are the team with a first year starting quarterback. But I don't think those factors are all that huge. Alabama doesn't rely on the quarterback for much more than to just not screw up. 

I think AJ McCarron is clearly more talented than Greg McElroy, and I think he will be a better player down the road, perhaps even an All America type talent. But this is his first real road test against a legitimate team with a very good defense that will get after his ass all night long. 

I know that he played extremely well on the road at Penn State, but let's be honest, how many SEC teams do you think Penn State could beat? They were an extremely overmatched team 3 weeks ago.

I think AJ will do a good enough job against the Gators. I think he might make a mistake or two. I could see him throwing a pick against this D. But I think a few long runs from Richardson and Lacy, whether it is just straight running it, or even a screen, will do the job. I think AJ will make enough throws to score enough times to win the game.

It basically comes down to this:

I think Alabama is good enough, with Trent and Eddie, to score at least 3 touchdowns and a couple fields goals against Florida.

Do you think Florida, or anyone for that matter, can be counted on to do that against Bama's D? Seriously, these guys are trying to hurt people out there. That lick that Dre Kirkpatrick laid on the Arkansas reciever after he caught the pass coming across the middle was a thing of beauty. He went flying backwards on contact. Dre is 190 lbs and he hits like a 250 pound linebacker.

Here is a preview of what you should expect to see several times during this game

Speaking of 250 pound linebackers...

Dont'a Hightower, Nico Johnson, and Courtney Upshaw are the best combination of linebackers in the country. There is not a single member of our defense, starting or even second string, that is NOT a hard hitter or a sure tackler. When these guys hit you, you do one of two things. You either go down right away, or you fall backwards. 

So I am not afraid of anyone's offense.

But they ALL should live in absolute waking fear of our boys

And to add to the disadvantage for Florida, two of their starting defensive linemen have been hurt in practice this week. Dominique Easley and Sharrif Floyd are banged up, and at least one may not play. Also, starting cornerback Jeremy Floyd will not play in this game, due to injury

Charlie Weis stated this week that he plans to throw the kitchen sink at Alabama's defense. Hopefully for the Gators, they can CATCH the kitchen sink when they throw it

Tim Tebow ain't walking through that door

Alabama 27
Florida 13

Oh, and just for laughs...


  1. I think that this Alabama team has what it takes to pull off yet another victory against the Florida Gators. The Tide seems to be focused, driven, and physically effective as well. Among this Bama team we have a group of young men who possess a variety of differing talents yet upon taking the field the many parts that are Alabama take shape and they become the Crimson Tide. Each man doing his part and each part hard at work. This is what makes us who we are. We are Alabama, a thirteen-time national championship winner. This is the Crimson Tide and we are ready to play some football! Roll Tide Roll!!! Let's beat those Gators!!!

    Brandy Kizziah

  2. Florida hasn't allowed a rushing TD so far this year.

  3. Florida may not have allowed a rushing TD in this season, so far. However, that doesn't mean that they won't give up several against the first team that can out muscle and out think them. Florida has played four games this season and of those none of them was a big contender this year. They played Fl-Atlantic, UAB, Tennesse, and Kentucky. Looking at the list of who they have played already, you can see that they are walking in different territory this week! ALABAMA WINS IT!!!!!!!!!!!