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NCAA Football Alabama Crimson TideGeorgia BulldogsSEC Football

Alabama Running Game Key against Georgia Bulldogs

John David Mercer-US Presswire

The Georgia Bulldogs come into Saturday’s game with the Alabama Crimson Tide holding on to the 22nd ranked defense in the country; however their top tier defense has one glaring weakness.

Georgia has struggled against the run.

Not just struggled, no, the Bulldogs rank in the bottom half in NCAA rushing defense with the 69th ranking. In fairness, that number may be inflated after taking on option attacks in the final two weeks of the season in Georgia Southern and Georgia Tech, both games in which the Bulldogs surrendered over 300 yards on the ground.

With that said, the secret to finding success against Georgia is rushing the ball early and often.  When the Tennessee Volunteers lost by just seven points their running backs toted the rock 40 times. The following week at South Carolina when the Gamecocks handed the Bulldogs their lone loss on the season? 51 carries.

This game has brought plenty of attention because of the efficiency of each teams’ quarterback, however, for Alabama success will mean less of AJ McCarron and more of Eddie Lacy and his freshman counterparts TJ Yeldon and Kenyan Drake.

Now seems like the perfect time.  After straying from the run against LSU and Texas A&M the Crimson Tide have returned to what they do best-running the football.  In the past two games against Western Carolina and Auburn, the Tide have flexed their muscle in the trenches, pounding the ball over forty times or more in each game for 567 yards and eight touchdowns.

Yes, running the ball will be key for Alabama; they have not lost a game in which they have had at least 40 rushing attempts under Nick Saban.