The College Football Playoff almost always features Alabama football. However, the Crimson thiTide missed the party last season and it is possible they miss the Playoff again in 2023. Those dreams were kept alive by the miraculous late touchdown Jalen Milroe threw to Isaiah Bond last week against Auburn with 32 seconds left on 4th and goal from the 31-yard line.
Isaiah Bond: Live and Let Fly pic.twitter.com/OPMWN0XC1T
— CBS Sports College Football 🏈 (@CBSSportsCFB) November 26, 2023
Hopefully, for Alabama's sake, it won't take a play of epic proportions to win this week. Given the opponent they're going up against, however, it just might.
Nothing is ever easy against the Georgia Bulldogs. The defending national champions have run roughshod over everybody in their path yet again this season. They're number one in the country and undefeated, with only two games that been decided by one possession. Both of those games were rivalry matchups on the road: A 27-20 win at Auburn and a 31-23 win at Georgia Tech in Atlanta.
Not only do the Bulldogs ave one of the best defenses in the country, but their offense is quite potent as well under the stewardship of first-time starter Carson Beck.
Georgia will be Alabama's toughest test yet, but the same applies for Kirby Smart's team. Every game between these two powerhouses has delivered, and this one should be no exception with what is at stake. If Georgia wins, they'll be the one seed in the College Football Playoff. They might make it with a loss anyway. Alabama has to win to even get considered, and might need a Texas loss to get there along with a win.
A lot is on the line with these two on Saturday—not just the SEC championship. With that much at stake, some Alabama football bold predictions are in order.
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Jermaine Burton accrues at least 100 receiving yards
Burton can do a little bit of everything for Alabama, but has been especially lethal as a deep threat. He is averaging 22.7 yards per reception this season, among the best marks in the country. Burton has seven games this season where he has registered at least one catch that has gone for 44 yards. He accomplished that feat again last week against the Auburn, bringing in a 64-yard touchdown.
Jermaine Burton is GONEEEEE
— PFF College (@PFF_College) November 25, 2023
Georgia's defense is stout, but it isn't the overwhelming machine that it has been the last couple of seasons. The Bulldogs rank ninth in the country in yards allowed per game and 12th in passing yards allowed per game. But that doesn't mean they've been able to shut down every receiver they've played against.
Missouri's Theo Wease had 90 yards on five receptions against Georgia. Florida's Ricky Pearsall and Eugene Wilson III went for 99 and 75 yards, respectively, when they played against the Bulldogs. South Carolina's O'Mega Blake and Xavier Legette produced 86 and 71 yards against Georgia. It's possible for receivers to play well when matched up with this secondary. Add the fact that Burton just needs one play to really make a dent and it wouldn't be a surprise to see him do well against his former team.
Alabama wins the game
Georgia has been mostly dominant this season, but they always tend to let their opponents hang around before putting their foot down. The Bulldogs have allowed their opponent to score the first touchdown in each of their last six games. Again, Georgia has won by multiple possessions in all but one of those games, so they know how to respond. But they've been playing a dangerous game allowing their opponents to strike first.
Eventually, that will come back to bit the Bulldogs. If anybody can take advantage of that opening, it would be the Crimson Tide. Alabama has an offense capable of striking quickly and a defense that ranks 17th in yards allowed per game and 15th in pass yards allowed per game. The formula is there for them to win the game. It will be up to how well the Tide can execute to see if they can end Georgia's 29-game winning streak, taking the SEC and potentially crashing the College Football Playoff party.