Capstone Report with DC: Orange Bowl Preparation
Less than two weeks remain until Alabama and Oklahoma kick off in the Orange Bowl from Miami Gardens, Florida.
Prior to the Christmas holiday, Martin Houston and DC from Golden Shores Productions explored the keys to the Orange Bowl and Alabama's preparation for the game during their weekly "Capstone Report with DC" segment on The Blitz.
The first concern for many fans involves the health of Tua Tagovailoa. The sophomore signal caller suffered a high ankle sprain against Georgia and had surgery following the game. During Monday's press conference, head coach Nick Saban updated the progress of Tagovailoa's recovery since ankle surgery.
According to DC, announcing Tua's progress to the media provides Saban with a tactical advantage concerning game preparation.
"I think he's leaving that out there basically I believe for Oklahoma to have to prepare for two quarterbacks." DC said.
Coming into the game, both teams have shown an ability to run the football with Alabama averaging 202.2 yards per game while Oklahoma has gained 253.9 yards per game on the ground. According to the Golden Shores Productions analyst, the running game could be the difference maker on December 29.
"This game is going to be won by the team that runs the ball the best and the team that stops the run." DC said.
Conventional wisdom suggests that containing Kyler Murray is the primary key for success for the Crimson Tide defense but DC believes that they might have more issues stopping the ground attack for the Sooners.
"I think Alabama is going to have their hands full in stopping this running game that Oklahoma has. I think their running backs are very good at hitting the holes and they've got a lot of speed to get to the outside." DC mentioned.
"We've had some success against teams running wide because we have two linebackers in the middle that can really cover a lot of field and Deionte Thompson being able to cover and play a lot of the wide spots and the safeties. He helps a lot in run support." DC said.
"I believe that if we can stop the run with our front seven and allow Thompson to stay back, then we'll have an opportunity to win this game pretty easily against Oklahoma." DC said. "If they can't establish the run on Alabama, I don't see them winning the ball game or getting close to Alabama in this game."
Later in the conversation, Martin Houston and DC further examined various topics including the impact that Quinnen Williams in the game, the status of Deonte Brown, Oklahoma's red zone defense.
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