Checking out some stats to get my head around the SEC Championship Game, a few things jumped out at me. Alabama has has gaudy defensive numbers this season, including leading the nation in total defense (233.7 ypg), scoring defense (9.3ppg), and opponent red zone conversion (60.87%). They are fundamentally sound in both run and pass defense.
However, they can be scored upon. Texas A&M showed that. The ball can be moved on them. LSU showed that. I don't expect us to be ripping off 7-10 yard runs on these guys. They've only allowed 23 runs of over 10 yards all season. However, in November, Alabama has allowed over 100 yards per game rushing. Much of that comes on Manziel's rushing abilities, but those were caused due to break downs on passing plays. If Murray is given room to run, look for him to do so. That'll open up some options down the field for man on man match-ups.
If we (and by we, I mean Bobo) don't get cute and start trying to convince ourselves we have to add 'wrinkles' to beat Alabama, our offense is good enough to score points on them. Will we score 40? No way. Do we have to? No way. They have done ok at stopping the pass, with two exceptions, Manziel and Mettenberger. I think our QB and receivers are better. I know our receiving options out of the TE and RB/FB options are better.
One final thing. With their red zone conversion rate, we have to think score from anywhere on the field, which we have done very well with. We are very good inside the red zone as well, but we lose the ability to stretch the field inside the 15. Being able to spread out their defense and make them cover Mitchell, Wooten, King, Lynch/Rome, Conley, Gurley/Marshall, and Ogletree, plus the ever present possibility of a play action run from the RBs, is a key to us winning. If we get complacent with a few underneath passes and the straight handoff, we are done for.
He's hoping college fun time in Cancun Bobo shows up Saturday. If we lose because Alabama beats us when we are playing our game, so be it. If they beat us because we decided the game we have isn't good enough so we are going do do things differently, they we'll get run out of the stadium like we did in Columbia.