National Championship is out for mountains
The mountain may not have come for Muhammad, but in the recent National Championship Game, Alabama must have felt like the mountain not only came for them but rolled over them, sat on them, and generally slid them out of the stadium to the tune of a 33 to 18 Georgia victory.
The mountain took the form of 6’6”, 340-pound Jordan Davis, who is termed a defensive tackle but is more like a defensive landslide. The Alabama offensive line had no answer for this fellow, who was, at various times, seen to shift one entire side of that line, break double teams like a nut cracker busting open a walnut, and make the opposing quarterback look like a deer in the sights of a very heavy rifle.
That quarterback, Heisman Trophy winner Bryce Young, said after the game that the defeat was, “on me.” In reality, what was on him was Davis, who forced Young into throwing off his back foot and into two interceptions, one for a touchdown, in his worst game of the season.
When Young wasn’t bedeviled by Davis, the other defensive linemen were getting to him because Alabama had to double team Davis on every play. That meant that the other three defensive linemen were being blocked one-on-one, giving them a better chance to disrupt play.
The chief beneficiary of that situation was Georgia defensive lineman Devonte Wyatt, who measures a tiny 6’3” and a mere 315 pounds. When Davis couldn’t find Muhammad, better known as quarterback Young, Wyatt was seen making the connection.
Alabama was a team built on speed, and in the SEC championship game, that speed was too much for what was considered a poorly conditioned Georgia defense. In the space of the few weeks between the SEC championship game and the national championship game, somehow Georgia got rocky and hard enough to roll the Tide in a direction they didn’t want to go.
When the mountain does come for Muhammad, he would be smart to get out of the way and maybe run for his life. There’s nothing forgiving about a mountain slide, and Alabama found that out the hard way.
Millerton resident Theodore Kneeland is a former teacher and coach — and athlete — and has been known to move a few mountains himself.