Bama bigs lead the way
Posted January 8, 2013
Barrett Jones, Chance Warmack, DJ Fluker, Cyrus Kouandjio, Anthony Steen. You may not have heard much about them because they are offensive linemen, but after watching Alabama blow up Notre Dame, these Bama bigs are a reason why the Tide rolled the Irish.
Jones won his 3rd national championship ring playing his 3rd different position on the offensive line. The senior played his final game with torn ligaments in his left foot and even gave his own quarterback a shove in the fourth quarter. But he and the four other offensive linemen protected their quarterback from Notre Dame and kept AJ McCarron's uniform clean.
The big fellas also created paths for Eddie Lacy and TJ Yeldon to run through. One particular play caught my eye. On Lacy's first touchdown run, right guard Anthony Steen brushed the defensive lineman on his way to his assignment, block Manti Te'o. Steen tripped before getting to the Notre Dame All-American but instead of staying grounded, Steen lifted himself to his knees quickly enough to get a shoulder on Te'o who couldn't reach Lacy much less tackle him. The result was a 20-yard opening drive touchdown.
Like their team, Alabama's offensive front was the best in college football. Some with much deeper knowledge of Bama football than me, are calling this the best offensive line in Crimson Tide history. They were certainly in tune during the National Championship game against one of the top statistical defenses of 2012.
This was Mack truck meeting Mitsubishi down in Miami.
Barrett Jones, Chance Warmack, DJ Fluker, Cyrus Kouandjio, Anthony Steen. They got much less attention during the national championship telecast than AJ McCarron's girlfriend, Katherine Webb. But from a football perspective, Bama doesn't score without them.