The Alabama Anaconda Is In Mid-Season Form, No One Can Score On The Crimson Tide Defense
The Alabama Crimson Tide handled its business in the SEC opener against the Vanderbilt Commodores on Saturday night. The Tide was in full control from start to finish claiming victory 55-3.
While the offense dominated to a tune of 628 yards it was the Alabama defense continuing to prove is stingy nature in the first conference game of the season.
The Alabama defense held Vanderbilt to just 129 total yards and allowed the Commodores across the 50-yard line just twice on the evening.
"We haven't given up a lot of explosive plays, we've played pretty well in the red area. I think this group plays really well together as a group. You know, the front seven and back end are tied together for the most part. We've got experienced players at linebacker and in the secondary at safety and I think that's very helpful. You know, the one thing we haven't done is created a lot of turnovers, which is something that we keep harping on all the time. But, I'll take this kind of defense without turnovers, but I'd like to see us get a bit more turnovers and win the turnover battle in games. I think it's very significant to winning and losing."
Alabama has only allowed two touchdowns all season, none through the air, and has held opponents to just 29 points through four games of action.
Saturday against Vanderbilt the Tide was able to pressure and affect freshman quarterback AJ Swann to a tune of five sacks with three additional quarterback hurries. The Tide was equally stellar against the Commodores rushing attack holding them to just 14 yards on the ground with eight tackles for a loss.
Starting inside linebacker Henry To'o To'o set the tone for the Crimson Tide defense with six tackles including one for a loss. His tackle in the backfield came on Vanderbilt's first drive of the contest, the Commodores were facing a 3rd-and-1 scenario and To'o To'o exploded through the backfield to force a 4-yard loss.
"Henry's a perfect fit for the position, he's very instinctive, he's a great communicator, he's the signal caller. I think he makes everybody around him play better and because he's very instinctive he understands, he's very football savvy. He understands exactly how he's supposed to fit on the runs, and ends up in the right place, and we try to play team defense, and linebackers should make a lot of tackles, and he certainly hasn't disappointed in any way, and he's played very well for us," said Saban.
The superstar of the Crimson Tide defense is obviously outside linebacker Will Anderson who's superb skillset was in full display on Saturday night as he terrorized Swann to a tune of 2.5 sacks. His evening put him up to 29 total for this Crimson Tide career and now "The Terminator" is all alone in second place for all-time Alabama sacks.
"That's crazy, I just found that out. You know, I like accomplishments. That's one of the biggest things for me," said Anderson. "I tell myself before every game, 'What type of legacy are you going to leave in that game and what time of legacy are you going to leave at the University of Alabama' and just to be that bad, tough dude that people respected and people looked up to and everything like that. That's one of the biggest things that I want to accomplish, leaving one of the biggest legacies ever at the University of Alabama."
The Alabama defense held the Commodores to a paltry 3 points in the opener, proving Pete Golding's unit is exactly where the Crimson Tide wants to be through four games in the 2022 season.
The Tide gets another chance to show its one of the nation's best as Alabama goes on the road next week against Arkansas. The Tide and Razorbacks kick off next Saturday at 2:30 p.m. CT.