After three weeks of a neutral site, bye week and a visit to Texas A&M’s “Hate Barn,” Alabama finally returns home to face Colorado State on Saturday.
The Crimson Tide can exhale and let loose this week, playing a team that is 1-2 on the season so far – losing to Colorado and Tulsa. Alabama faces former offensive coordinator and Greg McElroy screen pass aficionado Jim McElwain, who enters his second season with the Rams. McElwain won two national titles at Alabama, so, out of respect, Nick Saban probably won’t run up the score too badly on them, even though the Crimson Tide are a 40-point favorite.
Before the game kicks off at 6 p.m. Central on ESPN2, here are a two keys for Alabama.
Avoid injuries, at all cost:
In a walkover game like this, keeping players healthy is the most important thing. Alabama needs to score some points, get a decent lead and let the freshmen and backups get some playing time. AJ McCarron – the reigning SEC offensive player and Maxwell Award national player of the week – and the offense clearly sorted out any problems they had against Virginia Tech last week in College Station, and need to put up big numbers early, and let the new recruits show their mettle.