| NEWS PRE-GAME Thread: Bama opens as as double digit favorite on the road versus the Gators.

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Nick Saban was angry about Alabama’s performance in a blowout win, and that should be worrisome for Florida.

It’s standard Saban operating procedure to find things to pick apart after a lopsided win -- he’s always more upset in those scenarios than after a bad loss -- but Saban’s tone and words Saturday were different. He had tried sounding the alarm to his team all week leading up to Saturday’s game 48-14 win against Mercer that their focus, attitude and leadership wasn’t up to snuff. It didn’t seem to resonate as well as Saban wanted with the offense looking sloppy and disjointed to start the game, and the team made enough careless mistakes against the FCS opponent that Saban was revved up and ready to disseminate his anger to anyone willing to listen afterward.

“You know when I was growing up I worked for my dad,” Saban said. “So every day at dinner he would (slams podium) do that to the table and there was a reckoning. A reckoning for everything you were supposed to do that day...If you didn’t do any of those things right, you’re going to do it again.

“We might need a little of that somewhere along the line.”

Gulp.

Better batten down the hatches, Florida. When Saban is dipping into how he was raised in Monongah, West Virginia by his notoriously difficult-to-please father, you know he’s about to lay down the law to his team in film review and practices next week. His public callouts might not have delivered his desired outcome against Mercer, but you better believe he’s going to make sure they are more effective against No. 13 Florida next week in The Swamp. Knowing how Saban works, it’d be borderline shocking if he’s not successful in that effort.

It’s an extra reason why Dan Mullen should make the quarterback switch from Emory Jones to Anthony Richardson next Saturday. Mullen is reluctant to do it even after Richardson delivered a fantastic performance against South Florida. It’s never as simple as just reading the box score but consider the two quarterbacks’ stat lines on Saturday:

Richardson was 3 for 3 for 152 passing yards and two touchdowns. He also rushed for 111 yards and a touchdown.

Jones was 14 for 22 for 151 passing yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. His rushing output was 81 yards and one touchdown.

While the drumbeat has gotten louder for Richardson to get more playing time over Jones, Mullen hasn’t budged yet. When asked whether Jones would remain his starter moving forward, Mullen said, “Yeah.”

“As I’ve said, we have two really good quarterbacks,” Mullen said. “You’ll see both of them play every single game.”

Mullen sees Jones and Richardson every day in practice and knows their strengths and weaknesses better than anyone. He clearly understands the quarterback position well -- he previously tutored Alex Smith, Dak Prescott and Tim Tebow -- and has seen enough not to be able to trust Richardson the way he does with the older Jones. He has enough of a track record to deserve a little faith that he knows what he’s doing.

“He doesn’t always do the right thing, but he does special things,” Mullen said about Richardson. “We’ve got to keep coaching him to be efficient and make sure we’re making all the right reads.”

Mullen is especially right about one thing: Richardson does special things. And it’s obvious watching Florida play that the freshman gives the Gators offense something Jones can’t. The 6-foot-4, 236-pound quarterback is more dynamic and capable of delivering the big play as evident by his Saturday performance. Against Alabama, Florida will need all of that if it truly wants a chance to win. Jones might be the way to go against lesser opponents where you know what you’re getting, but assuming Richardson is 100 percent healthy for next weekend, Mullen needs to build his offensive gameplan around him.

Alabama is going to be like a heavyweight champion boxer swinging for a knockout after Saban works with his team this week. The choice for Mullen is simple: Do you go with a guy who can throw the big punch back or the one who might be able to take a big punch or two but has no chance of winning? Florida isn’t beating Alabama with Jones playing the majority of the reps at quarterback. Alabama has too much talent, especially on defense, for that to happen.

Florida likely won’t beat Alabama with Richardson as the starter, either, but you can at least talk yourself into there being a chance. If Mullen truly wants to do everything he can to beat Alabama next weekend, Richardson is his best shot.
 

JoseyWalesTheOutlaw

Crimson Tide Club
The stage is set for Dan and his Gators to take down The King. I am not so much worried about Florida but I am really worried about The King.

That day of reckoning is coming for this bunch soon.

  1. “In order to have a winner, the team must have a feeling of unity; every player must put the team first ahead of personal glory.” ~ Bear Bryant
 

BamaFan334

Scholarship Club
Crimson Tide Club
This is one of those games that could be close for a while, and then we put it on them in the end. The spread is a little high to touch, but it'll be something this team could achieve rather easy. Florida is a running team. We have speed for days, so they aren't lining up well if that's how they want to attack us.
 

Tidestalker

Crimson Tide Club
Bama looks good to me....

injuries are concerning....

Oline with the oline coach we have should be better....
Certainly have the talent there....
But lots of new players in first hostile environment....

Nick will have em ready
What is the OL looking like for Saturday? Is Dalcourt the new full time C, or are there potential changes with someone coming back to play RT?
 

NickelDoubleDog

Sideline Club
What is the OL looking like for Saturday? Is Dalcourt the new full time C, or are there potential changes with someone coming back to play RT?


IMO Dalcourt has looked good at C. If a change comes at RT (it won't this week), it's because someone can beat out Owens at that spot. But Owens is a vet and it will be hard to supplant someone who knows the playbook that well, even if he's less talented than our freshmen OTs.
 

Tidestalker

Crimson Tide Club
IMO Dalcourt has looked good at C. If a change comes at RT (it won't this week), it's because someone can beat out Owens at that spot. But Owens is a vet and it will be hard to supplant someone who knows the playbook that well, even if he's less talented than our freshmen OTs.
Shotgun snaps are marginal at best... Bryce has done a good job handling some wild ones
 

bama alum

Crimson Tide Club
The injuries are concerning but...

Ryan Brown said it perfectly on last night's The Zone...An angry Nick Saban, a rant...Bama is going to clean UF's clock Saturday. An angry Coach Saban is actually a happy Coach Saban because he has something to use in practice.

Re: the backup QBs for both teams...I guess this is when Gator fans will finally see Richardson supplant Jones as the #1 QB. I wonder (sadly) if we'll see Milroe supplant Tyson as the #2 QB. I really, really want to see Tyson succeed, not just because of his great grandfather, but this kid was a 4* for a reason. He's been at UA a while. It's time to start putting the pieces together and play consistently.
 

rick4bama

Bama Fan since 1965 and counting....
Scholarship Club
I don't see Dandy Dan beating Bama! At Miss. St., he only came close twice 2014 25-20, 2017 31-24, Last year with Florida SECC 52-46. Also, don't Bama have one game that the rat poison got into the system. I hope his rants get into the players.
 

bamanc50

Sideline Club
I wouldn't put a whole lot of stock in the week of the Mercer game and the actually beginning of the game. Bama has done this during the Nick Saban era. Even Nick Saban teams have played down to their competition. The Tide will roll on Saturday.
 
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