Tbone says: Bama 31, The Other SC 16. Much has been made of the loss of Eric Norwood, and its apparent that the defense suffers without him, But this game will underscore the absence of another NFLer, Darian Stewart. D-Stew brought a physical presence to our secondary run support that showed in big games like this one. Look for our ground game to struggle against their stout dline, and Bama’s backs to roll over our underperformers. What will still be a relatively close game in the 3rd quarter will come unravelled as we resort to throwing on every down.
Buck says: Alabama 27, USC 9. I wrote last week that this is the only game on the schedule we cannot win. Knowing sports the way I do, I know that’s not true, because stranger things have happened. But I can’t come up with a scenario that doesn’t involve miracles that results in us winning this game. I think we’ll get out-muscled on both lines of scrimmage. I see long, sustained drives by ’Bama, which will actually help keep us within striking distance for a while. But like Tbone, I believe our inability to run the ball will rear its ugly head once again. On the bright side, it should be a spectacular fall day, so enjoy it regardless of the outcome.
G-Man says: Bama 30, USC 20. Here we go, a shot at #1. As Buck said recently, Bama is building a dynasty. The dynasty in making rolls into Willy-B tomorrow. Could this be a trap game as some have predicted? Perhaps, but only with a perfect game by the Cocks and a sub sub par game by the Tide. We need 3+ turnovers and a special teams TD (yeah, right). As much as I’d like to see it happen, I have to agree with Buck and T-Bone that Bama will gradually wear us down with a relentless ground game and a stout D. Too much Ingram. Too much Richardson. Too much O and D line depth. As I see it, we are much better than we have ever been since joining the SEC, but the Tide is just too good. Hope like hell I’m proved wrong about this one.