Tide swamps No. 8 Bulldogs in deluge
Coker helps Alabama rebound with easy win
athens, ga. — With its season in the balance, No. 13 Alabama had quite a response Saturday.
The Crimson Tide is still very much a force in the national race.
Jake Coker ran the offense to perfection, the defense turned in a dominating performance, and Alabama even got a touchdown from its special teams in a 38-10 rout of No. 8 Georgia.
Alabama (4-1, 1-1 Southeastern Conference) jumped ahead 24-3 at halftime and iced the victory on Georgia’s first offensive play of the second half. Eddie Jackson intercepted a pass from the Bulldogs’ second quarterback, Brice Ramsey, and returned it 50 yards for a touchdown.
After a discouraging, five turn over loss to Mississippi in its SEC opener two weeks ago, the Tide looked more like itself on a rainy day between the hedges.
“I told them before the game that the plan we had for them, ordinary men couldn’t go out there and get it done,” said Coach Nick Saban, whose team avoided its first 0-2 start in the SEC since 1990.
“We needed them to be They were. And Saban was about as close to gleeful as he can get.
“I know they’ve been criticized a lot, but I thought we played an outstanding game today, every part of the game,” he said.
Indeed, the Tide scored touchdowns on offense, defense and in the kicking game.
Coker, with an assist from Lane Kiffin’s play-calling, completed 11 of 16 for 190 yards, passed for one touchdown, and ran for another. Derrick Henry rushed for 148 yards and scored on a 30-yard run that put Alabama ahead to stay midway through the second quarter.
“Ever since I was little, I’ve dreamed of beating Georgia and all those good schools,” said Coker, a transfer from Florida State in his first season as the Tide’s starter. “This is pretty sweet.”
Georgia (4-1, 2-1) yanked starting quarterback Greyson Lambert late in the first half, but it didn’t matter. He even went back in after Ramsey threw his second interception.
“Their defense made plays and covered our guys well,” Lambert said. “This just wasn’t our day.”
After completing 33 of 35 passes in the previous two games against South Carolina and FCS opponent Southern University, Lambert was 10 for 24 for 86 yards and an interception on his final throw.
Ramsey was even worse (1 for 6 for 20 yards), leaving Georgia with a huge question mark at the most prominent position on the field.
“We’ve got to reevaluate everything,” Coach Mark Richt said. “The quarterback play. Everything.”
With the game tied at 3, Henry burst untouched through the middle of the line to cap an eight-play, 76-yard drive. Little did the home crowd of more than 91,000 realize, the Tide was just getting warmed up.
DerrickHenry, who ran for 148 yards, rumbles ahead for Alabama, which led Georgia by 35 points early in the second half Saturday.