Playing the Sooners
Oklahoma's defense took plenty of criticism during the 2018 football season.
In New York on Friday, Alabama quarterback and Heisman Trophy candidate Tua Tagovailoa was asked about facing the Sooners in the Orange Bowl.
“For me, I respect all of our opponents. I definitely think they are a really good defense even if said otherwise,” Tagovailoa said during a media availability at the New York Stock Exchange. “I think they have a really good DC (defensive coordinator). I played with a couple of their guys – Tre Brown, Robert Barnes, Grant Calcaterra, who is on offense.
“I tried to recruit some of them while we were playing in The Opening together to come to Alabama. Unfortunately, they didn't. But I definitely think they are a well-rounded team.”
Oklahoma and Alabama will meet on Dec. 29 in the Orange Bowl, which is a College Football Playoff semifinal game.
“I just got the opportunity to meet Kyler last night. Nothing but positive things to say about him. He's awesome. He comes from a really great family,” Tagovailoa said. “Dwayne, we exchanged scriptures before games and what not. We've encouraged each other.”
A quarterback has won the Heisman trophy in seven of the past eight seasons, including Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield in 2017.