It's better late than never, no? yes?
As I stare at the lone kid remaining in the Indiana student section via ESPN coverage, and w/ 3 minutes remaining in the tOSU's "late start routing" of Indiana, I can't help but think to myself "self, I sure hope the CFB51 Showcase Game this week isn't as lame."....
That is just the way it is in the early season, and prior to oil finding its way into the mechanisms that make teams operate- or, at least operate efficiently.
I wonder which of the two teams meeting in Atlanta's new stadium will find its stride first?
could go either way.
quick look at Bama's O:
they run an O that doesn't require any flashy movement or execution. well, if history is an indicator of future. They have a solid O line. They are solid with carriers. They have a more mature QB running the show than last season's runner up team, and he has competent receivers.
quick look at FSU's D:
these guys are solid, too. If Bama has a better O than FSU does D, it's a close thing.
quick look at Bama's D:
are you kiddin' me? There is a massive gap between these guys and the second tier of D's, and though aspects of the squad may have better individual positions elsewhere, there is nobody, as a whole, that clearly stands above them. They have depth, and that depth consists of players that would be starters almost anywhere else.
quick look at FSU's O:
when they click, they are hard to manage. they have a slippery QB and you can't give them too much room for building momentum, be that in a single play, series, or game.
FSU's offense against Bama's D is a push. Bama's O against FSU's D reveals an edge in Bama's favor. it's not huge, though. Special teams are both stout and likely push.
rusty metrics (early season prior to that oil finding the friction) and in my humble opinion favors Bama- their offense AND defense are supremely fundamental and require little 'functional gadgetry' that many teams rely on but doesn't reveal itself in its full glory until the rust has been sprinkled on Bigfoot's scrambled eggs. FSU can play a similar game as what should be expected from Bama against almost anyone else on their schedule- just not in this game. they've got to be at the top of their game to win.
foolishly fearless prediction:
here is how i do it and always have- it serves me well though it's overtly simplistic:
Bama's O will struggle somewhat early, but will assert itself late. They can be 'off' and still score. I think they're capable of hanging anywhere between 31 and 45 on FSU's D. That is a mean of 38.. and that is where I plant them.
FSU's O will struggle all night long against Bama- but just when you think i was about to mean-mouth them, it has to be expressed their explosive nature shouldn't be underestimated, and they can absolutely explode on Bama... because of that penchant, and because i feel strongly that Fisher will dispatch St.Nick from Georgia (which has tones of Charlie Daniels embedded) with 'allowing more big plays in a single game by a Saban team in ten years', i think the score remains close. I think they can break a 28 to 42 pound chunk out of that pachyderm. that's a mean of 35.
intangibles likelihood to break bad with either of these teams is firmly in the 'unlikely' column. they're both damn near 'professional' outfits, or so far as the NCAA allows...
and there you have it.
Bama wins 38 to 35 in a game that looks to be FSU's until mid third.
my gut, however, tells me this game will be more sloppy than expected, and both teams will be off- and that will be reflective on the board.... chipping the granite will have 38 beside Bama and 24~28 under FSU- and i'd have to blame Bama's habit of forcing turnovers and scoring with D.