Nick Popio | January 1st, 2020
Alabama and Michigan will meet up for the fifth time in series history as they collide in a mouth-watering Citrus Bowl matchup. The last time these two met the Tide clobbered the Wolverines 41-14 in 2012. The last bowl meeting was the 2000 Orange Bowl in Tom Brady‘s farewell game at Michigan. The maize and blue outlasted the Tide by one due to a missed extra point.
Nick Saban’s machine-like program comes in as only seven-point favorites. Nobody is giving Michigan a chance and nor should they after getting owned once again by the Buckeyes. On the other hand, Bama was only eight points away from being in the college football playoff again. They will have to prove that they want to be there and not feel sorry for themselves about not being included in the playoff.
Jim Harbaugh is beyond desperate for a signature win and this would be it. His defense will have to compete like they never have before if they want to pull this one-off. In their three losses, they surrendered 40 points per game. Alabama’s offense alone averages 48 a contest. Even with backup Mac Jones at the helm, the Tide shouldn’t miss a step with all the artillery that surrounds him.
Game Changers To Watch On Alabama
RB–Najee Harris WR’s–Jerry Jeudy, Devonta Smith and Henry Ruggs III OL–Alex Leatherwood and Jedrick Willis Jr. DL–Raekwon Davis LB–Anfernee Jennings DB–Xavier McKinney
Game Changers To Watch On Michigan
QB–Shea Patterson WR–Ronnie Bell LB’s–Khaleke Hudson and Josh Uche CB–Lavert Hill
Head To Head Stats
|10-2 (6-2 SEC)||Record (Conference)||9-3 (6-3 Big Ten)|
|48.3||Points per game||33|
|513.3||Yards per game||402.1|
|318.5||Yards allowed per game||292.8|
|183.4||Passing yards allowed||173.8|
|135.1||Rushing yards allowed||119.1|
|Mac Jones *|
1176 yards (11 TD, 3 INT)
|Passing yards||Shea Patterson|
2828 yards (22 TD, 6 INT)
1,088 yards (5.9 per att.), 11 TD’s
|Rushing yards||Zach Charbonnet|
642 yards (4.7 per att.), 11 TD’s
1,200 yards, 13 TD
|Receiving yards||Ronnie Bell|
705 yards, 1 TD
73 tackles, 12 tfl, 7.5 sacks, 8 QBH
|Defensive leaders||Jordan Glasgow|
79 tackles, 6 tfl, 5 sacks
The Crimson Tide are not used to being in a position like this outside of the playoff. Michigan hasn’t won a bowl game since the 2016 Citrus Bowl over Florida. Plain and simple though if Alabama shows up they should come out on top with ease. If the Wolverines want to change the direction under Jim Harbaugh to becoming elite, then they must find a way to win this game. In the end, though, Alabama is just far too much for the Wolverines to handle.
Alabama 44 Michigan 29
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