Texas fans think otherwise, but the Longhorns, coming off a 5-7 season should be no match for Nick Saban’s Alabama Football team. The game will nonetheless be massively hyped with multiple storylines to make for good theatre.
Steve Sarkisian and four of his assistant coaches spent time in Tuscaloosa. With Sark’s knowledge, along with that of Jeff Banks, Kyle Flood, Bo Davis and AJ Milwee, there is ample reason for Texas fans to believe Texas knows just how to beat the Alabama Crimson Tide.
Knowing how and doing something are two very different things.
There are other angles used to suggest Texas will have advantages. Three former Crimson Tide players now play for Texas and Sarkisian. With no malice intended toward any of those former players, they were at most replaceable losses for the Crimson Tide.
The most talented of the trio, Jahleel Billingsley never came close to his potential in Tuscaloosa. He stands to make Texas better, but against what will likely be a suffocating Crimson Tide defense, the young man will not be a game-changer. Tide fans wish him well at Texas and will forever be grateful he caught an important fourth-down pass in the Iron Bowl.
Had Keilan Robinson not left because of a Crimson Tide logjam at running back, he would have gotten plenty of carries last season. He would have done well, and like Billingsley will help the Longhorns.
Alabama Football Exit by Hall a More
Crimson Tide fans have been disappointed Agiye Hall never progressed in Tuscaloosa. Perhaps he will in Austin, but his exit from the Crimson Tide was a plus. There are too many stories of Hall’s negative effect on the team to ignore all of them. Nick Saban gave the young man extra chances to develop a championship attitude and the work ethic such an attitude requires. Hall wasted them. With a fresh start, maybe Hall can prove naysayers wrong. He has talent, but he will present little challenge for a very good Crimson Tide secondary.
By far the worst aspect of the Sept. 10 game is that it is expected to begin shortly after 11:00 AM CST. Absent cloud cover or rain and the game will be a scorcher. Temperatures on the field in the second half will likely surpass 100 degrees.
In suffocating heat, against an also suffocating Crimson Tide defense, the Horns can be expected to wilt. Best of luck to them after Sept. 10.
Steve Sarkisian did an outstanding job as the Crimson Tide Offensive Coordinator. He had a wide array of available Crimson Tide tools and he knew just how to use them.