Believe it or not, Notre Dame’s offense is capable of scoring against Alabama.
In fact, Everett Golson is actually dangerous enough to lead the Fighting Irish to victory.
I know. It’s difficult to imagine. But here are the Crimson Tide defenders who, if they play up to their potential, will prevent such an upset from taking place.
3. Whoever Is Covering Tyler Eifert
Joe Schad of ESPN reported that Alabama will vary its personnel covering the 6’6” Notre Dame tight end.
Alabama S Vinnie Sunseri said he will probably cover Tyler Eifert when hands on ground and Dee Milliner will when he's split out wide— Joe Schad (@schadjoe) January 5, 2013
Eifert is the Irish’s best chance to get anything going through the air. The first-round NFL draft prospect led Blue & Gold receivers this season with 44 receptions for 624 yards and four touchdowns. His length makes him a difficult matchup for anyone, so Sunseri and Milliner will have their hands full.
2. Jesse Williams
Williams is Alabama’s anchor. He’s enormous and powerful enough to completely shut down Notre Dame’s rushing attack.
At 6’4”, 320 pounds, Williams isn’t exactly a threat to chase down Golson. In fact, he’s only recorded seven solo tackles this season. But you can’t put a number on Williams’ ability to demand double teams and free up Crimson Tide linebackers to pursue Theo Riddick and Cierre Wood.
Will Mosley shut down Golson?
1. C.J. Mosley
Alabama lost its leader last year in Dont'a Hightower, but its stop unit didn’t skip a beat in 2012.
For that, you can thank Mosley.
The stud linebacker has recorded four sacks, two interceptions and a whopping 99 tackles this season. His 61 solo takedowns are more than twice as many as any other Crimson Tide defender. As the newest leader of Nick Saban’s defense, it’ll be his job to not allow Golson, the game’s ultimate X-factor, to get going.
David Daniels is a featured columnist at Bleacher Report and a syndicated writer.