With their defense on another historic run, the Alabama Crimson Tide square off against the Tennessee Volunteers Saturday night at Neyland Stadium.
Alabama ran over Missouri with 362 rushing yards and five touchdowns in last week’s 42-0 win, led by running backs Eddie Lacy and T.J. Yeldon.
Lacy burst through the Tigers line in the first minute of play with a 73-yard touchdown score, and Alabama only let up a 98-yard kick-off return to Missouri’s Marcus Murphy in the second quarter.
Head coach Nick Saban has his defense playing even better than last season’s squad, which produced three first round NFL picks. The Tide are first in the nation in points and yards allowed per game, and are outpacing the 2011 championship squad.
The Volunteers head into Saturday’s matchup losing 10 of their last 11 SEC games, and are 0-13 against ranked opponents over the last two seasons, and in three conference games this season Tennessee is giving up 43 points per game.
Tennessee is in the midst of two game losing streak after falling to Mississippi State last week 41-31, despite clawing back from an early 13-point deficit, and cutting the lead to three points twice.
Mississippi State junior quarterback Tyler Russell threw for a career-high 291 yards and two touchdowns, and squelched the Volunteers hope of a comeback with a nine-yard score to receiver Malcolm Johnson with nine seconds remaining.
Quarterback Tyler Bray had his lowest output of the season with 148 passing yards and two touchdowns, and Tennessee couldn’t keep up with Bulldogs running back LaDarius Perkins’ 101 rushing yards.
Bray will take on the brunt of the offensive load this week, with top running back Rajion Neal is doubtful Saturday due to an ankle injury. Neal has 500 yards rushing and five touchdowns this season.
Betting Odds: Alabama is favored by 20.5 points
Over/Under: 55 points
Prediction: Alabama won't look past Tennessee, but their next real test will come against undefeated Mississippi State next week. Still the Crimson Tide have showed no signs of letting up their dominant play. With Neal out Bray will have to put on a performance for the ages for the Volunteers to have any chance.
Predicted Score: Alabama 40, Tennessee 6