Report card: Alabama football smashes second consecutive SEC opponent

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Alabama football has outscored its two SEC opponents 125-3 over the last two weeks.

The Vanderbilt beating should have been expected, but few saw Alabama’s 66-3 pounding of Ole Miss on Saturday coming. Ole Miss had given Alabama fits the last three years, winning two of those matchups. Alabama seemingly got all of its frustration out under the lights in Bryant-Denny Stadium.

Offense:  A

Alabama amassed 613 yards of total offense while averaging 8.2 yards per play. The Crimson Tide pounded Ole Miss on the ground for 365 yards and 5 rushing touchdowns. Five players — Jalen Hurts, Josh Jacobs, Najee Harris, Ronnie Clark and Bo Scarbrough —  scored touchdowns. Alabama averaged 7.2 yards per rush.

Alabama took what it needed through the air, with Hurts throwing for 197 yards and 2 touchdowns. Hurts missed a couple of throws early, but he settled in and had great touch on the ball as the game went on.

Hurts once again showcased his dual-threat ability with 298 yards of offense and 3 total touchdowns.

There were some penalties that need to be cleaned up, and surely those will get addressed during film session this week.

Defense: A

Ole Miss’ offense never seemed to have a prayer. Even as it attempted to move the ball, you could tell it was only a matter of time before disaster hit.

That came in the form of 2 interceptions by cornerback Levi Wallace, including a pick-6. Alabama’s pass rush was back after it, accounting for 5 sacks.

Ole Miss quarterback Shea Patterson hadn’t passed for less than 350 yards on the year, but Alabama held him to 165 yards. Patterson didn’t have much time to set his feet because Alabama’s front abused Ole Miss’ offensive line.

Alabama finished the game with 10 tackles for loss, but we all know that pesky field goal the Tide allowed will stick with Nick Saban and the defensive coaching staff.

Special teams: A

There was a missed field goal and a fumble on a punt return, but it’s hard to harp on those too much amid the whole team’s effort.

JK Scott looked really good punting once again. He also boomed a 48-yard field goal. There were some nice punt returns from Trevon Diggs (before his injury and fumble) and freshman Henry Ruggs III.

Coaching: A

Whatever the coaching staff did or said in practice this week, it worked. You could tell from warmups that the players were amped for this game. That carried over into Alabama’s opening kickoff and the rest of this 60-minute spanking.

Overall: A

Honestly, Alabama is making it tougher and tougher to do these grades each week. We don’t want to come off as an easy A, but what else do you do when a team completely annihilates its opponent?

Saban and the players can be critical of Alabama’s performance, but it’s hard to watch a 66-3 beatdown and find many faults.

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