Alabama: A Tale of Two Halves

Larry BurtonSenior Writer IOctober 18, 2008

Jekyll and Hyde, Yin and Yang, Cain and Abel... Studies in two completely different animals that sprang from the same gene pool.  Now you can add the Crimson Tide and the Embarrassed Cried.

Does any team in America look as good as the first half Crimson Tide?  No not even close.  Does any team look as beatable in the second half?  Well maybe, but it still makes the list for entirely different animals.

Nick Saban's hairdresser is going to be working overtime to keep the coach's hair from turning grey (or getting pulled out). 

This is utterly more frustrating than a coach who wonders why his QB only completes 50 percent of his passes.  If you can dominate one half, then why not the other?

As Alabama faces the toughest part of its schedule, solving this dilemma is something that Saban must do and must do quickly for the Tide to remain in contention for national championship discussion. 

Dominating Georgia will quickly be forgotten as memories of blown leads fill the minds of the voters.

Tonight Saban himself said he knew Houston Nutt was telling his team to play hard, that this would be a different team in the second half, and he was right.  Les Miles, Tommy Tuberville and others will tell their teams the same thing too.

If they don't solve this soon, teams much better than an okay Ole Miss squad will make the Tide pay dearly.  But one would wonder if it's just a case of letdown after building up a lead or simply playing down to the level of the competition. 

The Tide has dominated the teams they were an underdog to and struggled with the teams they were favored to trounce.  Now rated at No. 2 in the nation, they may not be underdog the rest of the year, so does this mean more struggles ahead?

Not if Nick Saban has anything to do with it.  I'm sure he's headed back to the lab to come up with an antidote for this Jekyll-Hyde curse.  Alabama fans everywhere are hoping he can do it.  If he does, this could be a team to marvel.


The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.