For the Crimson Tide, preparing to face the Georgia Bulldogs in the SEC Championship is like preparing to face itself.
“It’s football the way it’s supposed to be played,” defensive end Damion Square said about the Bulldog offense he will face in this Saturday’s Southeastern Conference Championship.
While Tide fans may have written off the game against the Bulldogs, the players believe it will be a tough matchup.
“We’re definitely not taking them lightly,” Square said. “We understand that those guys are going to come play the best game they’ve played all year and we’re trying to come play the best game we’ve played all year. Georgia has been playing big time football.”
The defense is preparing to face Bulldog quarterback Aaron Murray, who leads the nation in passing efficiency.
“He’s a great quarterback – coached well,” Square said. “He’s a guy that plays the quarterback position the way it’s supposed to be played, and he does a great job for his team.”
Square said the Tide defense will be putting more pressure on Murray to limit the junior’s passing ability. However, the Bulldog running back tandem of true freshmen Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall is another threat the Tide will have to handle, Square said.
The Tide offense will be focusing a lot of attention on stopping Bulldog linebacker Jarvis Jones, said tight end Michael Williams.
“On film, he’s the first one that stands out, because he’s the first line of defense and comes through the hole and make a lot of plays for them,” Williams said. “It’s going to be a big task for us to stop him.”
Williams said having a good running game will help the Tide against Jones. The Tide will be able to keep the linebacker off balance, slowing his progression up-field.
Team leaders, seniors excited for championship game
The Tide seniors will play in their first SEC Championship game since 2009.
“As a senior class it’s a big thing, because the last time we were here we were all freshmen,” Williams said. We remember how that game felt and it was a big deal for our team. That was one of our goals for this year, and now we have a chance to go out the same way we came in.”