In the days and weeks leading up to the Cotton Bowl, many people found it ridiculous that Alabama was a 10-point favorite over Michigan State. Well, as it turns out, that spread was, in fact, ridiculous.
It should have been higher.
Alabama absolutely had its way with Michigan State on New Year’s Eve, blanking Sparty 38-0 in the one of the most helplessly embarrassing high-profile bowl games in college football history.
Perhaps we should have seen this coming.
“They are particularly good when they’re playing teams that are of similar styles to them because at every position, they are bigger, better, faster, stronger,” FOX Sports play-by-play announcer Tim Brando said of Alabama on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “And Michigan State plays the same way Alabama plays – a little bit like LSU in the SEC. You’re going to line up and try to run Leonard Fournette between the tackles? Not gonna happen. The Michigan State run game is what got them into the end zone in that 20-play drive against Iowa in the Big Ten Championship. Well, they weren’t going to run the football against that incredible front seven that Alabama has. So yeah, that was a game that you knew Alabama was in a great position-wise.”
Alabama will face Clemson for the national championship on Jan. 11. Brando thinks Clemson will give Alabama trouble, but he’s still picking the Tide to win their fourth national title in seven years.
“I picked Alabama way back on April 21 to win the national championship, and I still believe they will,” Brando said. “I did not know that Jake Coker would become the quality quarterback that he has, and let’s face it: Lane Kiffin is sort of the Darth Vader of assistant coaches in college football. This guy was basically I think hired by Saban so that when he lost, someone else could get the blame. It’s easy to pile on Lane. But the truth of the matter is, last year with Blake Sims, this year with Jake Coker, he’s made a huge difference in their development and their offense. He’s kind of brought them into the 21st century. I believe Alabama will win the game based on their diversified approach.
“I think Clemson is going to push Alabama and push them hard,” Brando continued. “But I still think Alabama is going to win the national title – and when he does win it, Saban is gone. He will move to the booth, he will graduate to ESPN, and in my opinion, he’ll be in the booth with Kirk Herbstreit and Chris Fowler.”
Seriously? Saban leaving Alabama and joining the media?
“I think he’s tired of dealing with what he has to deal with, feeding that monster,” Brando said. “And it is a monster. A huge monster. Any one loss feels like five losses at Alabama. I mean, these loons think they ought to win by 30 every time out. That’s what they think. Their fan base is as vile and as through-the-roof as any I’ve ever seen – and they’ve been spoiled by Saban. Nick is his own worst enemy with regard to this. I think it’s become something that’s gotten under his skin a little bit.”