The following is a commentary from WBRC FOX6 Sports Director Rick Karle:
It was definitely big boy football, and when it was over, the Crimson Tide had landed a national best 21st straight win. What did I take from Bama's 10-0 win at LSU? The Crimson Tide defense is uncanny, Jalen Hurts has some wheels, and look for Hillary Clinton to win the presidential election come Tuesday. Now before you go off on me, allow me to explain. Here is The Good, The Bad & The Ugly from Saturday night's game:
The Good: Plenty!
Shall I start with the Chicago Bears - I mean - the Crimson Tide defense? I didn't think it could get any stronger, but Saturday night it was downright scary. Just think of what these dudes did:
*They held Leonard Fournette to 35 yards on 17 carries (hey, when you look at his stats last season against the Tide, at least he's consistent).
*The "D" held LSU to 125 total yards, 25 yards in the second half
*The Tigers rushed for a total of 33 yards, averaging 2.5 yards per carry
*LSU quarterback Danny Etling went 11-of-24 for 92 passing yards. He was sacked five times.
*The Tigers chalked up a whopping six first downs
Also very good on Saturday night? Bama quarterback Jalen Hurts. Oh, he looked pedestrian in the first half, and he needs work on his passing game as he threw for a mere 107 yards. But oh, those legs: In the second half they started moving and totally confused the LSU defense. Hurts ran for 114 yards and a TD. The difference in the game? When running attacks for both teams were limited, Hurts' athleticism outshined that of LSU QB Danny Etling.
Also good? OC Lane Kiffin, who in the second half opted to turn the offense over to the leadership and legs of Hurts. Say what you want about Kiffin, but he's smart enough to change attack plans when needed. Kiffin kept plugging away, first turning to Bo Scarbrough, then to Hurts as the freshman's talents spelled the difference in the game.
And then there is head coach Nick Saban, who keeps on padding this career coaching superlatives. How about the latest highlights following the victory?
*The current 21-game win streak is the longest in the Nick Saban Alabama era
*Saturdays win was Saban's 200th career victory
*At Bama, Saban is 71-13 against SEC competition
*Coach Saban is 101-26 in his career against SEC competition
*Saban has led the Crimson Tide to 23 wins in the last 25 road games
*Saban now stands 3rd all-time in coaching wins against Top-25 competition with 69 victories: Joe Paterno is #1 with 86 wins, Bobby Bowden #2 with 82 (Coach Bryant #4)
The Bad: Not Much
Oh, you can pick on Jalen Hurt's passing abilities or Adam Griffith's field goal prowess, but I can't see much that went bad against a very physical football team.
A few illegal procedure calls late in the game were not impressive, but I'm here to tell you that anything you saw that looked bad will be quickly addressed.
The Ugly: It Depends On Who You Want In The White House:
It's a wild stat, but one that is worth mentioning: Get this: Over the last 32 years there have been eight presidential elections. EVERY time that Alabama has beaten LSU in an election year in that span, a Democrat has been voted into the White House. Every time LSU has beaten Bama during that 32-year span, a Republican has won the presidential election. Here's the breakdown:
1984: LSU 16-14 Ronald Reagan
1988: LSU 19-18 George H.W. Bush
1992: Bama 31-11 Bill Clinton
1996: Bama 26-0 Bill Clinton
2000: LSU 30-28 George W. Bush
2004: LSU 26-10 George W. Bush
2008: Bama 27-21 Barack Obama
2012: Bama 21-17 Barack Obama
2016: Bama 10-0 ???
There you have it! A Democrat winning the presidential election every time Bama has beaten LSU in an election year over the last 32 years.
So then, here's the question: Would you rather have a 10-0 Bama win on Saturday night and Hillary Clinton in the White House for the next four years or have sacrificed a loss on Saturday night so Donald Trump would be in the White House for the next four years?
I'd love to hear your opinion. Maybe the best thing to do is to adopt that 24-hour rule of Nick Saban where you enjoy the win for a day and then get back to reality.
The moral of this story? Alabama is really good. And the presidential election? Good luck with that!