Alabama secures bid in SEC title recreation vs. Florida, as Nick Saban’s staff ‘retains on holding on’

No. 1 Alabama received the SEC West and clinched a spot within the convention championship recreation by beating LSU 55-17 on Saturday in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Alabama will play SEC East champ No. 6 Florida in Atlanta on Dec. 19.

After the win on Saturday evening, Alabama coach Nick Saban mentioned he was happy with the gamers for successful a tenth division title in 14 seasons.

“Now we gotta speak about how we wish to end the season and proceed to enhance and get higher,” Saban mentioned.

The 38-point victory represented the biggest residence loss by a defending nationwide champion within the AP ballot period (since 1936).

However even such a lopsided win did not come with out its personal set of challenges.

The electrical energy went out at Alabama’s staff lodge a half-hour earlier than the pregame meal and coaches and gamers have been compelled to eat at nighttime.

“Stuff occurs,” Saban mentioned, “and all people retains on holding on.”

What’s extra, 4 Alabama coaches have been sidelined by COVID-19 protocols, together with vast receivers coach Holmon Wiggins and three defensive assistants.

Saban himself wasn’t allowed to be part of staff actions till he cleared COVID-19 protocols on Friday. The 69-year-old examined optimistic for the virus on Nov. 24 and remoted for 10 days earlier than touring with the staff.

“When you have got good tradition in your staff and you’ve got established that tradition together with your staff, they will adapt and regulate to issues that do not go precisely such as you anticipate them to,” Saban mentioned.

However what occurred went virtually precisely based on plan for Alabama (9-0) because it jumped out to a 21-0 lead within the first quarter and by no means appeared again.

LSU coach Ed Orgeron grew visibly pissed off on the sideline because the Tigers fell to 3-5, and at one level threw off his headset and screamed at a number of of his assistants.

“Clearly it was irritating seeing a man get 200 yards in a single half,” Orgeron mentioned of the incident, referring to Alabama vast receiver DeVonta Smith, who completed with eight catches for 231 yards and three touchdowns.

Gamers on either side vented their frustrations as Alabama acquired payback for final season’s loss to LSU in Tuscaloosa through which former Tigers quarterback Joe Burrow was carried off the sphere.

“It was most undoubtedly chippy,” Smith mentioned.

Crimson Tide linebacker Dylan Moses agreed.

“All of us remembered what occurred final yr, however we needed to return out and do our job,” he mentioned.

Alabama is scheduled to play at Arkansas subsequent Saturday to shut out the common season.

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