Sunday, November 25, 2012
3 Up, 3 Down: Alabama 49, Auburn 0
By Alex Scarborough
TUSCALOOSA, Ala -- A look at the good and the bad from No. 2 Alabama's 49-0 throttling of in-state rival Auburn at home on Saturday.
THE GOOD 1. Dominating from the start: There wasn't a safe place for Auburn to turn in Bryant-Denny Stadium. As soon as Alabama won the toss and elected to receive, the game was over. Alabama scored on its first seven drives. Auburn would end up with just as many first downs for the entire game. The offense was balanced, the defense stingy. From start to finish, Alabama was the better team. It was just the 60 minutes of football Nick Saban was hoping for with No. 3 Georgia on the horizon.
2. Balance on offense: There wasn't one way to attack the Alabama offense on Saturday night, starting with the no-huddle look Doug Nussmeier employed to begin the game. From there, it was all downhill. AJ McCarron threw for four touchdowns and the duo of Eddie Lacy and T.J. Yeldon ran for four more. You can't ask for much more in terms of spreading the ball around.
3. Opportunistic defense: It was arguably the most complete defensive performance for the Crimson Tide. When UA needed pressure, it got it. When UA needed a turnover, it got it, too. Alabama finished with seven tackles for loss, three forced fumbles and two interceptions.
THE BAD 1. Fumbles, again: For the fourth straight game, Alabama lost a fumble on offense. This time it was backup running back Kenyan Drake letting the ball hang loose for the Auburn defense.
2. Third down troubles: Finishing on third down was once again an issue for the Alabama defense. The lackluster Auburn Tigers converted on 4-of-12 attempts, taking advantage of lapses in execution.
3. Secondary concerns: You had to look hard for them, but they were there. Alabama's secondary was not rock-solid against a freshman quarterback in Jonathan Wallace. Twice he found holes for first downs, once for 23 yards. This is nitpicking, but rest assured Georgia offensive coordinator Mike Bobo will see what happened and try to replicate it next weekend.