No. 2 Alabama and Vanderbilt kick off their respective SEC schedules when the Commodores take to the streets on Saturday to face the Crimson Tide. Alabama gets to dip into league play before falling headfirst into the SEC West gauntlet, while Vanderbilt couldn’t have pulled off a more daunting matchup for this cross-divisional game.
Alabama comes into the game with a 3-0 record after shelling out a light-hearted ULM team last week. While Vanderbilt looks like an improved program, it’s hard to see the Commodores sticking with that program well into the second half. Alabama is a 40.5-point favorite for a reason, and it can use that as an SEC adjustment before the Week 5 road trip to Arkansas. Crimson Tide starters should be watching some of this game from the bench.
Vanderbilt faces an immensely steep climb, but has already surpassed his 2021 overall wins thanks to an entertaining win over Northern Illinois last weekend. The Commodores will have a hard time keeping up with a Crimson Tide roster of four- and five-star talent, but rookie quarterback AJ Swann will be an interesting player to watch against this Alabama defense.
So you can prepare for both teams’ first SEC test on Saturday.
How to watch Alabama vs Vanderbilt live
Date: Saturday September 24 | Weather: 7 p.m. Eastern Time
Location: Bryant Denny Stadium – Tuscaloosa, Alabama
TV: SEC Network | Live broadcast: fuboTV (try for free)
See three players
Cameron Latu, Alabama TE: The 6-foot-5 pass receiver is a great target for quarterback Bryce Young in the passing game, and Latu isn’t exactly shy about blocking in the running game, either. Last season, Latu set the Alabama record for touchdowns by a tight end with eight. In two games this season, Latu is still trying to find the end zone for the first time. This game seems like the perfect time to end this drought.
Henry To’oTo’o, Alabama LB: To’oTo’o spent two seasons in Tennessee, so he is intimately familiar with this Vanderbilt show. The last time he played against the Commodores in 2020, To’oTo’o had to play offense and caught a 31-yard pass. While he probably won’t be used at wide receiver this time around, To’oTo’o should still make a big impact on the game at middle linebacker. Expect To’oTo’o to add to his record 2.0 tackles for loss and a sack against an overwhelmed Vanderbilt offensive line.
AJ Swann, Vanderbilt quarterback: After throwing for 146 yards and two touchdowns in assist work against Wake Forest, Swann earned his first start against NIU last weekend. The freshman performed very well, completing 64.3% of his passes for 255 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions. Now the difficulty level increases exponentially. It will be fascinating to see how Swann interacts with the Tuscaloosa environment.
Alabama vs Vanderbilt Prediction
Vanderbilt should be proud of what they’ve done so far, but this game won’t even come close. Alabama simply has too much firepower for the Commodores to match in the Year 2 Rebuild under coach Clark Lea. As tempting as it is to pick Vanderbilt against the spread, the team’s defense gives me serious pause. Over the past three weeks, the Commodores have dropped 104 points to Elon, Wake Forest and NIU. The Crimson Tide offense, led by Bryce Young, should be able to score. I take Alabama to cover a large number. Prediction: Alabama -40.5
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Source : localtoday.news