Alabama Football: Things We Learned and Monday Message Board 9/29

Nic GulasSenior Analyst ISeptember 30, 2008

Hey Guys,

I'm pretty sure that most of us felt like Alabama had a chance this weekend, but I would have to call anyone a liar who told me they expected that. 

An absolute demolition of the No. 3 team in America on national television was quite a sight to see in person. 

Anyways, it's been way past 24 hours, so it's time to move on to Kentucky, but not before one last quick look back.


Jim McElwain is Alabama's most important new addition this season.

Sure, all the new players are nice, but they wouldn't be worth crap without an offense.  Enter Jim McElwain.  The Tide has now put up 40-plus on consecutive SEC opponents for the first time since 1989.  The average final score for Alabama this season has been 37-13 and 41-18 away from Bryant-Denny Stadium. 


If you didn't believe me the first time I said it, John Parker Wilson is a different quarterback this season.

McElwain is also responsible for this, but credit is also due to JPW himself for buying in and making the necessary changes.  Wilson stepped up when his team needed him for the first time this season, going 13-16 for 205 yards and a touchdown against Georgia.

He has gone from a 56 percent career passer to 63 percent this season, having three games over the 60 percent completion mark. 


Who needs one running back when you can have three (or four)?

It's impressive enough that Glen Coffee is averaging seven yards a carry so far this season, but even more impressive that he isn't leading the team in touchdowns.  That honor is currently on Mark Ingram with five, who isn't too shabby himself with an average carry of 5.6 yards.

Then there is Roy Upchurch who has visited the end zone in each of the past two games and is averaging 6.2 yards per carry himself.  This is all before Terry Grant, last year's back of choice, has even seen the field for a significant amount of time this season.

Overall, Alabama has rushed for 1,076 yards and averages 5.2 yards per carry.  That is easily enough to put Alabama at the top of the SEC. 


Even if the backs are averaging five yards a carry, there is no way that happens in practice.

Sure, the stable of backs that Alabama has is quite impressive, but not as impressive as the Tide's run defense.  Alabama has only allowed 270 yards rushing this season, one-third of that coming in one game alone.  The Tide has only allowed one rushing touchdown all season and is only giving up 2.3 yards a carry, best in the SEC.

This isn't against some cheap competition either.  The Tide has held three Heisman-caliber backs, Knowshon Moreno, James Davis, and C.J. Spiller, to a total of 17 carries for 54 yards against them, good for three yards a carry.


So now that we know this team is for real, there is no slack time available as an undefeated Kentucky team comes to town. 

Sure, Alabama has done well so far this season, but there have still been times of lapse when you just ask yourself, "Are they trying to lose the game?" 

So, that question brings us to this week's topic: What unit will cause the Crimson Tide to drop a game this season?

The defensive line has been great, but the defensive backs have had some rough spots. 

JPW has done great to this point, but will he continue to be consistent? 

Also, can someone please tackle on special teams!

Or is there somewhere else that would cause Alabama to stumble this year?

As always, you can leave your thoughts below or write an article yourself about what you think would cause a Bama loss.

That's all for this week, guys.

Thanks, and Roll Tide.