Bama defense not getting enough credit

Bamabuzzard

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They're improving, but I glanced at these rankings just for comparison:

2023 (so far):
scoring D: 18th (2nd SEC)
rushing D: 29th (6th SEC)
passing D: 48th (6th SEC)
total D: 31st (7th SEC)

2022 (total):
scoring D: 9th (2nd SEC)
rushing D: 35th (4th SEC)
passing D: 17th (3rd SEC)
total D: 13th (3rd SEC)

I hesitate in saying "this is one of the best Bama defenses in years" - could turn out that way, but a lot of improvement is still needed.
Yeah, we're no where in the zip codes of the dominating defenses of previous years. We're still not getting consistent penetration from our defensive front and those great defenses could collapse a pocket almost instantly.
 

KrAzY3

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Lost in the shuffle, this is one of the best Bama defenses in years.
Hmm, I wonder what changed?

But yes, they are back to being a defense that I can expect to get stops instead of hoping they do.
They're improving, but I glanced at these rankings just for comparison:
They had two big defensive breakdowns against Texas leading to two huge plays and scores that skew things pretty heavily, but otherwise they've been quite good and I think this is worth emphasizing, with their backs against the wall for the most part. Remember, last's year's team was getting lit up by Ewers (something I pointed out at the time), but he got knocked out of the game and that dramatically slowed their offense (he had a better rating and percentage completion in 2022).

Much of three games have been tight games, and they've been dealing with turnovers on the offensive end (some of which lead to scores, further skewing the defensive stats) and ineffective offenses for much of the time. So they have played better in my opinion than last year under more adverse circumstances.

To make an apples to apples comparison though, Ole Miss (with the same QB) put up 400 yards on Alabama last year, and scored 24 points.

This year it was 300 yards and ten points, demonstrably better. The problem with Golding defenses wasn't his inability to club baby seals, he could do that, it was to match up with good offenses.
 
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KrAzY3

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I decided to look up opponents, and last year Alabama faced a much, much easier early schedule.

Their first four games included Texas, yes... but otherwise it was Utah State, ULM and Vanderbilt.

For the record, Utah State was 6-7, ULM was 4-8, and Vandervilt was 5-7. So the only team they faced with a pulse was Texas and they'd have likely lost that if Ewers didn't get knocked out of the game.

By contrast, Middle Tennessee was 8-5, and Ole Miss was 8-5, of course South Florida was a dreadful 1-11 but Alabama held them to 3 points. So between facing a (far) tougher SEC foe, a healthy Ewers and Middle Tennessee I'd say the defense has faced a far tougher challenge this year thus far.

Sark and Kiffin in two of your first four games isn't very easy, but with the Ole Miss game Alabama has moved up to 11th in the nation in scoring defense (Golding lived outside the top 10), and Georgia is in 10th with only .8 points less per game.
 
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Padreruf

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I decided to look up opponents, and last year Alabama faced a much, much easier early schedule.

Their first four games included Texas, yes... but otherwise it was Utah State, ULM and Vanderbilt.

For the record, Utah State was 6-7, ULM was 4-8, and Vandervilt was 5-7. So the only team they faced with a pulse was Texas and they'd have likely lost that if Ewers didn't get knocked out of the game.

By contrast, Middle Tennessee was 8-5, and Ole Miss was 8-5, of course South Florida was a dreadful 1-11 but Alabama held them to 3 points. So between facing a (far) tougher SEC foe, a healthy Ewers and Middle Tennessee I'd say the defense has faced a far tougher challenge this year thus far.

Sark and Kiffin in two of your first four games isn't very easy, but with the Ole Miss game Alabama has moved up to 11th in the nation in scoring defense (Golding lived outside the top 10), and Georgia is in 10th with only .8 points less per game.
Thanks for looking this up...I intuitively felt that we had played better teams this year and that the defense had outperformed last years. This UT team is much better than last years...
 

crimsonaudio

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The point wasn’t to compare the 2023 D to the 2022 D other than to suggest we tap the brakes on suggesting Bama’s D is back. When they’re top10 in the primary defensive statistical rankings we can talk - that’s where the legit Saban defenses have been ranked.

Is Bama‘s D better in 2023? I believe so, but they have lots of room to improve.
 

KrAzY3

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The point wasn’t to compare the 2023 D to the 2022 D other than to suggest we tap the brakes on suggesting Bama’s D is back. When they’re top10 in the primary defensive statistical rankings we can talk - that’s where the legit Saban defenses have been ranked.

Is Bama‘s D better in 2023? I believe so, but they have lots of room to improve.
I'm not in love with the Steele hire, but...

Basically every Golding defense was worse than every other Alabama Nick Saban defense. This defense is better than every Golding defense based on what I've seen so far. Surely not the peak Pruitt years or what have you, but Golding was here for five years so it is in my opinion still the best we've seen in years, heh.
 

Ledsteplin

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They're improving, but I glanced at these rankings just for comparison:

2023 (so far):
scoring D: 18th (2nd SEC)
rushing D: 29th (6th SEC)
passing D: 48th (6th SEC)
total D: 31st (7th SEC)

2022 (total):
scoring D: 9th (2nd SEC)
rushing D: 35th (4th SEC)
passing D: 17th (3rd SEC)
total D: 13th (3rd SEC)

I hesitate in saying "this is one of the best Bama defenses in years" - could turn out that way, but a lot of improvement is still needed.
And a lot of the defenses included in those stats have not played Texas, or other elite team. They've mostly been playing cupcakes and less thans. Those stats will look different in a couple more weeks.
 

UAH

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Guys are playing with a lot more confidence. This year, they don't look lost. Our best LB's aren't always out of position on 3rd down and our DB's are breaking up passes instead of getting flagged.

I tell ya, the Ole Miss defense looked very familiar yesterday.
I did think that the defense overall looked better in the 2nd half that we have seen for some years. Particularly solid linebacker play against an SEC opponent. There seems to be something to this idea of getting back to old school where everyone is on the same page. That vs the experimental crazy stuff that Golding ran. Question: What are the odds of Golding lasting more than 2 years at Ole Miss?
 

twofbyc

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And a lot of the defenses included in those stats have not played Texas, or other elite team. They've mostly been playing cupcakes and less thans. Those stats will look different in a couple more weeks.
Bama will be top ten in all, top five in half of them, if they play like they did in the second half for the rest of the season.