Ole Miss vs. Alabama: Why Crimson Tide Are Locks to Cover Hefty Spread

Pete SchauerCorrespondent ISeptember 29, 2012

TUSCALOOSA, AL - SEPTEMBER 22:  Quarterback AJ McCarron #10 of the Alabama Crimson Tide looks downfield for an open player while playing against the Florida Atlantic Owls on September 22, 2012 at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Alabama defeated Florida Atlantic 40-7.  (Photo by Michael Chang/Getty Images)
Michael Chang/Getty Images

The No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide have a lot of pressure on their shoulders heading into Saturday night's 9:15 p.m. ET matchup against the Ole Miss Rebels.

Not pressure applied by coaches, fans or family, but rather the men who wage lump sums of cash upon things they have no control over: college football games.

According to Bovada, Alabama comes in as a 30-point favorite against the Rebels, a mark the Crimson Tide can eclipse.

Alabama ranks No. 13 in FBS rankings, scoring 42 points per game. On the defensive side, it's allowing just 5.3 PPG, which ranks No. 2 in all of college football. If you do the math, that's roughly a 36-point differential.

Junior hometown QB A.J. McCarron has been unstoppable in 2012, sporting a 10-0 touchdown-to-interception ratio to go along with 819 yards and a 63 percent completion mark.

McCarron has been aided by receivers Kevin Norwood (7 rec, 159 yds, 2 TD), Amari Cooper (9 rec, 138 yds, 1 TD) and Christion Jones (7 rec, 125 yds, 3 TD) through the air and running backs T.J. Yeldon, Eddie Lacy and Kenyan Drake on the ground.

Yeldon leads the Crimson Tide in rushing with 254 yards and two touchdowns on 40 carries while Lacy ranks second with 45 carries for 232 yards and four touchdowns. Drake rounds out the Alabama rushing attack, accumulating 126 yards and three TDs on just 13 carries.

The point?

Alabama has too many weapons for Ole Miss to stop.

The Rebels rank No. 73 in FBS rankings, surrendering more than 25 PPG, making Alabama an extremely difficult opponent to contain.

Bo Wallace's four interceptions won't bode well against a Crimson Tide defense that specializes in takeaways. The Alabama D has forced 12 turnovers this season, highlighted by five against the Arkansas Razorbacks in Week 3.

Mississippi was blown out by No. 14 Texas by 35 points just two weeks ago and you should expect the same on Saturday at the hands of the Crimson Tide.


Final score: Alabama 52, Ole Miss 17


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