Alabama Football

How Alabama Can Beat Georgia in College Football Playoff Championship

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Tonight is the night. The Alabama Crimson Tide will go for their second College Football Playoff national championship in three years with what is setup to be a SEC showcase of the two best teams in the country. While I fully expect the Tide to come away victorious, there is a blueprint they must follow in order for it to happen.

So, let me put this in clear terms: Run. The. Ball.

Simple enough right? Alabama is going to have to impose their will in the ground game in a way they haven’t done so in a while. One can argue that Alabama should be going for their fourth championship should they have stuck to their guns and implemented a game plan solely around the run game. Ask fans who watched the 2014 Semi-Final against Ohio State, and after many gashing runs around the left side Derrick Henry had, it still gives them nightmares as to why they went away from it.

However, in 2015, the Tide rode Derrick Henry all the way to a Heisman, and continued that in the championship game where he received 36 carries for 158 yards with three touchdowns. Last year however, Steve Sarkisian missed the memo that Damien Harris and Josh Jacobs were both highly capable backs, but chose to give them a combined 7 carries (mostly after Bo Scarbrough got injured) the entire game.

The catastrophic blunder of allowing a true freshman in Jalen Hurts to single-handedly decide the outcome of that game by having him drop back over 30 times, was both irresponsible and bone-headed at the same time. If this again is the game plan, I renounce my proclamation of Georgia having no shot, and the chips will fall as they may.

But, if Harris, Scarbrough, and Jacobs receive a MINIMUM average of 13 carries apiece (throw Najee Harris in there as well for at least five), this game will be over by halftime. Not only that, Hurts must have designed runs of himself of at least 10 carries to bring the game total at a minimum of 50 runs. Now, Daboll is going to have to be creative in doing this. He will have to have some misdirections, wide receiver sweeps with Calvin Ridley (or the push pass they used to do), all to set up the play-action pass downfield.

NaJee Harris Alabama Fresh Sports Talk

Najee Harris (22), is one of many talented running backs Alabama has in its stable. (Photo by Cedric Mason – Touchdown Alabama Magazine)

I believe in the Alabama defense enough to say they will stop Nick Chubb and Sony Michel — as well as true freshman quarterback Jake Fromm.

The key really and truly is for Alabama not to overthink this. They are the better team, and they must play to their strengths. If Alabama commits to running the ball, they will win this game.

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