Colorado State Rams vs. Alabama Crimson Tide Football Preview
Where: Bryant-Denny Stadium – Tuscaloosa, AL
When: Saturday, September 16, 2017 – 7:00 PM ET
TV Broadcast: ESPN2
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Betting on the Colorado State Rams (2-1)
The Rams returned to the win column on Saturday with their easy, 38-10 victory over Abilene Christian. It was a good bounce back from their disappointing three-point output in the Week 2 loss over Colorado.
The best part about this past weekend’s W is their efficiency in running, as they collectively ran for 268 yards on 7.1 yards per carry, while also tallying a pair of rushing touchdowns. The backfield tandem of Dalyn Dawkins and Izzy Matthews led the charge, gaining 162 on the ground in just 24 combined attempts.
Quarterback Nick Stevens also had a fun outing, as he threw for 337 yards – which was right along the alley of his season averages – and had his second three-TD day of the year.
The three main guys in his receiving corps – Michael Gallup, Olabisi Johnson, and Detrich Clark – are, of course, benefiting well from his fairly prolific start. Gallup, who paced CSU in just about every receiving stat in 2016 as a true freshman, should be on his way to repeating the feat. He currently has team-leading numbers of 26 catches for 360 yards.
Stevens and his crew will have confidence going to Tuscaloosa, which is a good thing to have before facing one of the most consistently-ferocious defenses in the country. Don’t expect the Rams to look competitive, but they are capable of providing some flashes.
Defensively is where the Rams could have more impact. They are an aggressive bunch, especially in trying to blast opponents within the line of scrimmage, and now have 17 different guys that have been credited with a tackle for loss. It’s also encouraging to see them have seven interceptions in the young season, as it could be mean that they have some fire in them to somehow slow down ‘Bama’s attacks.
CSU has won five-straight ATS (2-3 SU).
Betting on the Alabama Crimson Tide (2-0)
The Tide did what they were supposed to in the first two weeks: win with ease. They beat Florida State, 24-7, and then followed it up by casually routing Fresno State, 41-10.
Offensively, it seems that ‘Bama is still not going full force with its passing game. Though indeed more of a scrambler, QB Jalen Hurts’s 112 passing yards and 18 pass attempts per game is a bit too low.
The aerial attack also appear adamant on feeding Calvin Ridley more than anyone in the receiving corps, as he leads the team in catches (12) and receiving yards (127). The junior wideout has nine more receptions than the two men that are tied for second, and one of those, running back Bo Scarbrough, is only getting targets via check downs.
Such a trend may continue in the coming weeks, though, since the Tide have a naturally strong ground game. Hurts and Damien Harris, in particular, are running for 157 YPG on 7.8 YPC, and they each have two rushing scores on the year.
Over on defense, Alabama is obviously one giant force to be reckoned with. Although they again lost a list of valuable pieces, coach Nick Saban and his staff are at it again, quickly developing new ones to become future high draft picks in the pros. The Tide’s D has only allowed 8.5 points and 4.4 yards per play in their two games this season.
‘Bama has won 11-straight games at home (7-3-1 ATS).
‘Bama (-28.5) wins and covers the spread, 42-13.
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