TUSCALOOSA, Ala. The University of Alabama football team returned to the practice field Tuesday afternoon as preparations continue for Saturday’s nationally televised game with the Georgia Bulldogs.
The Crimson Tide worked on regular first-and-10, second and long, goal-line and short-yardage situations during its two-hour session in full gear at the Thomas-Drew Practice Facility.
The 16th-ranked Crimson Tide (3-0, 2-0 SEC) will host the 22nd-ranked Georgia Bulldogs (2-1, 0-1 SEC) in a nationally televised game this Saturday night at Bryant-Denny Stadium. ESPN will televise the game with kickoff set for 6:45 p.m. (CDT). Mike Patrick (play-by-play), Todd Blackledge (analyst) and Holly Rowe (sideline reporter) will describe the action from Tuscaloosa.
The game will feature the Southeastern Conference’s two most storied programs. The Crimson Tide and Bulldogs have combined for nearly 1,500 all-time wins and 33 SEC championships. Alabama leads the way and ranks sixth nationally with 783 all-time wins, while Georgia is third the SEC and 11th nationally with 704 wins. The Crimson Tide leads the way with 21 SEC titles, while Georgia is third with 12 SEC titles. From 1971-82, Alabama (8) and Georgia (4) won all 12 SEC championships.
The Alabama football roster lists 16 players from the state of Georgia, including junior right guard Marlon Davis (Columbus, Ga.), junior right cornerback Lionel Mitchell (Stone Mountain, Ga.) and sophomore nose guard Lorenzo Washington (Logansville, Ga.).
Several Crimson Tide players spoke with the media following Tuesday’s practice. Here are their comments.
Junior right guard Marlon Davis:
On Tuesday’s practice:
“It was a tough practice. It was pretty long. It was a real tough, fast-tempo practice. We had a good day.”
On being from Georgia:
“I grew up and Alabama fan. This is another SEC game against a real tough opponent. I have to go out and play as hard as I can every play.”
On Georgia’s defensive front:
“Georgia is powerful up front. The tackles are very strong, so we are looking for more physical game up front. They are also quick, but they are very powerful.”
Senior wide receiver DJ Hall:
On how tough it is to play one physical game after another:
“It’s not really that tough. That is all a part of playing football. The biggest thing Coach Saban emphasizes is the 24-hour rule. That is long gone. We should not be worried about what happened in the Arkansas game. We are working on Georgia now. They are a good team with a lot of great players. In order to beat Georgia we have to be 100 percent focused. We can’t worry about what we did last week, even though we played hard. We have to go out and player harder this week to get better.”
On breaking Ozzie Newsome’s career receiving record:
“It’s a real blessing. We felt so good coming into the game. We worked so hard on beating the 1-on-1 coverage and press coverage the whole week. The coaches told us all week, if you beat the press there are big plays out there.’ The offensive line, running backs and tight ends all protected well and John Parker (Wilson) made some great throws.”
On Georgia’s defense
Georgia has a great defense. They play fast and they fly to the ball. They have good athletes and play 100 percent every time.”
Senior linebacker Keith Saunders:
On Tuesday’s practice:
“Practice went well. We are working hard to get ready for Georgia. We have to continue to work hard each day and get ready for the game.
On Georgia’s offense:
“Georgia has a real good offense. The quarterback is very good and he has two really good wide receivers. The running backs are fast. We need a good week of practice to be ready for a good team.”