Alabama has outscored opponents 128-14 after three games of the 2012 season, hardly good news for a Florida Atlantic team that has been outscored 90-40 this season.
And if Georgia's 56-20 victory over the Owls is any indication, well, this one should be a walk in the park for the Crimson Tide.
Still, games aren't played on paper, and Louisiana-Monroe has all taught us a thing or two about being too smug when it comes to taking the favorites. With that in mind, let's take a closer look at this clash between the Crimson Tide and the Owls.
Where: Bryant-Denny Stadium, Tuscaloosa, Alabama
When: Saturday, September 22 at 5 p.m. ET
Listen: Sirius 136; Alabama affiliates
Betting Line: Alabama (-50), according to Bet Online
Florida Atlantic Injuries (via USA Today)
None to report
Alabama Injuries (via USA Today)
RB Jalston Fowler, knee, out for season
DB Jarrick Williams, knee, out for season
WR Chris Black, shoulder, out
How many points will Alabama win by? Will they cover the 50-point spread? Or will this game be over by halftime, causing them to call off the dogs?
It's not a question of if they'll win. It's only a question of by how much.
If Alabama loses, they'll surely lose a place in the Top 25. Then again, if they lose you may not care because you'll be hitching a ride on one of those flying pigs that are zipping around your house.
What They're Saying
You want a mismatch? Dan Kausler Jr. of AL.com writes just how much of a mismatch you'll see in this one:
Out of 120 teams in the Football Bowl Subdivision, Florida Atlantic ranks No. 87 in rushing offense (131.7 yards per game), No. 97 in passing offense (202), No. 103 in total offense (333.7) and No. 116 in scoring offense (14.7 ppg).
The Owls will match up against an Alabama defense that ranks No. 8 in rushing defense (57.7 yards per game), No. 10 in passing defense (152.3), No. 6 in total defense (210) and No. 3 in scoring defense (4.67 ppg).
On the other side of the ball, Florida Atlantic ranks No. 115 in rushing defense (253 yards per game), No. 60 in passing defense (218), No. 102 in total defense (471) and No. 84 in scoring defense (30.0).
The Owls will match up against an Alabama offense that ranks No. 48 in rushing offense (186.7 yards per game), No. 82 in passing offense (212.3), No. 69 in total offense (399) and No. 17 in scoring offense (42.67).
Yeah, I would say this is a slight mismatch.
Florida Atlantic Player to Watch: Graham Wilbert, QB
The FAU quarterback could have a very long day on his hands.
Though the senior has 569 passing yards, four touchdowns and just one interception on the season (while completing 67.9 percent of his passes), he hasn't faced a defense like Alabama's yet. The Crimson Tide have already forced 12 turnovers on the season, and they can certainly get to the quarterback.
If Wilbert can withstand the pressure and avoid the turnovers, he might be able to stave off the inevitability of an Alabama win through the first half. But if he spends his afternoon on his back and makes poor decisions, FAU fans probably will have to turn this one off by halftime.
Alabama Player to Watch: A.J. McCarron, QB
While there are any number of 'Bama players you could focus on in what promises to be a blowout, I'm most intrigued to see the continued development of the Tide's junior signal-caller.
McCarron has been solid in 2012, throwing for 607 yards, seven touchdowns and no interceptions while completing 64.3 percent of his passes. He'll hardly be tested in this one, but I'll be looking carefully at his decision-making and accuracy when Alabama does decide to pass.
Key Matchup: Florida Atlantic's Front Seven vs. Alabama's Rushing Attack
Florida Atlantic is allowing a whopping 253 yards per game. Meanwhile, Alabama has given carries to eight different players this year and has five players with more than 50 rushing yards on the young season.
T.J. Yeldon and Eddie Lacy are one of the best one-two punches in the backfield in college football. The Crimson Tide have a big, nasty offensive line. They'll surely look to pound the rock against Florida Atlantic early and control possession from the get-go.
If Florida Atlantic can somewhat slow the Alabama running game and force Alabama to the air, they may have a chance to get after McCarron. The Alabama offensive line has given up eight sacks this year, after all. But if 'Bama pounds the rock successfully, that goes out the window.
This one will be over as soon as the whistle to begin the game blows. Alabama cruises, 66-0.
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