Samuel’s Intangibles: 2017 Iron Bowl Edition

Each week columnist Sam Lasseter shares from his unique perspective and predicts the outcome for Saturday’s game.

Well, Auburn fans we are at the end of the regular season with everything still to play for. Just one small game will dictate whether we start the playoff season, or instead play in a New Year’s Six bowl game.

We all want to start our playoff journey on Dec 2 in Atlanta versus the Georgia Bulldogs. However, we have a big task ahead, and that is to play the University of Alabama Crimson Tide lead by Coach Nick Saban. They’ve won 24 straight SEC games (SEC Championship games included).

The last time the Tide lost in SEC play was September 19, 2015 at the hands of the Ole Miss Rebels. What will it take to make their nect loss November 25, 2017?

It will take 60 minutes of tremendous execution in all phases of the game from the likes of Johnson, Stidham, Holland, Carlson, R. Davis—well, from every Tiger on the team.
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To win our execution must be even better than it was against the University of Georgia. We need to score TDs when we get into the red zone using aggressive play calling and not playing to lose rather than playing to win.

Jarrett must be precise in his passing when in the red zone, using every tool in his bag. Our OL must be aggressive in blocking, and open up holes for KJ to run through to the end zone. (We must be aggressive and strong up-and-down the field, but making TDs in the RZ is going to be a key to victory).
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We must win the turnover battle. In fact, I believe we can’t turn the ball over at all if we expect to win over Alabama.

Our defense must get after the QB, but be disciplined and stay in their lanes because the Alabama QB is a threat to break off a long run. We need Mr. Holland and Davidson to know what bubble gum flavor the Alabama QB is chewing by the end of the game if we expect to beat a team of this caliber.

Our discipline needs to be impeccable to slow the Alabama offense. I look forward to seeing what our defense can do, and we must force three-and-outs, and not give up any chunk plays. Make them earn every yard and every first down.
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As for special teams, we have a weapon in Carlson. He needs to be perfect in this game—both on field goals and kicking touchbacks. Our kick coverage needs to be the best it has been all season on punts and kick offs to make Alabama earn every yard. Stay in your lanes, and make sure to wrap up the ball carrier when you get the chance.

It should be a good one, ladies and gentlemen, and it all starts at 2:30 this Saturday afternoon in Auburn, Alabama. Is it our time? I think so . . .

Auburn 27 — Alabama 24

Sam Lasseter

Sam Lasseter

Sam Lasseter is an Auburn graduate, fan and historian. An active member of the Huntsville running community, Sam has completed 21 marathons and ultra runs.
Sam Lasseter

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