Alabama Panel: Tennessee week
Are you at all concerned about Mark Ingram’s condition?
Kenny Freeman: The only concern I have about Mark Ingram is him not getting the ball more.
Shannon Ferguson: No I’m not concerned. Opposing defenses have stacked the line put a halt to Ingram and Richardson’s high rushing numbers they got at the first of the season. But Tennessee is ranked ninth in the SEC in run defense so I’m hoping the offense will get back on track.
Roger Hoggle: No, because I think we are still trying to find the balance of run to pass. I don’t think it was to protect Mark, I think we were trying to dictate the defense and work on the passing game. Without Ingram in the game, the defense had to adjust, not just stack the box like so many teams are doing to contain Ingram.
How much do you expect Julio Jones to play against Tennessee?
Kenny Freeman: I am not sure what was going on last week , but I hope and believe he will have a lot more touches this week.
Shannon Ferguson: I think we’ll see Julio play today as long as he can tolerate the pain in his hand.
Roger Hoggle: I expect him to play first half and depending on score, maybe sit out the second and then, with the off week, be fully recovered in time for LSU.
The first BCS standings have Alabama in at No. 8. Are you comfortable with where the Tide is?
Kenny Freeman: With the loss to South Carolina I am not at all surprised they are at No. 8. They just need to play with heart and intensity and let the chips fall where they may.
Shannon Ferguson: By no means do I like Bama sitting in the No. 8 spot. But then again I don’t agree with the formula they use. Regardless I believe the SEC Champion will go to the title game and Bama has the edge but we’ll just have to see how the rest of the season unfolds.
Roger Hoggle: Yes, as a one loss team we can’t expect to be in the Top 5. However, I think sitting at No. 8, if we can win out, we can move up week by week to get back in the discussion.
Tennessee is fresh off a bye week and in need of a win. Could this potentially be a trap game for Alabama?
Kenny Freeman: Alabama better have their head screwed on right this week, not because of a bye week or the fact that Tenn. needs a win but simply because this is
Tenn. and it is just about always a close hard fought game.
Shannon Ferguson: I don’t think this is going to be a trap game. Bama knows they can’t underestimate anybody with the way they are performing right now. But this may be the game Bama gets their running game cracking again. Tennessee is already thin on its defensive line due to injuries.
Roger Hoggle: I wouldn’t label it a trap game at all. Tennessee is a talented team in the SEC. They did have No. 6 LSU on the ropes until the last second so we can’t overlook them. Though it’s not a trap game, if we go to Knoxville and don’t play our best, they are talented enough to beat us.
What is your prediction for the final score and a key player?
Kenny Freeman: Alabama 31 Tenn. 21
Shannon Ferguson: My key players this week are the offensive line. They really need to open up some holes for our running game. 27-10 Bama.
Roger Hoggle: 38-14 Alabama. I look for Richardson and Ingram to both have a good game this week.