Nerds Roast Your Team: How Alabama Might Be Overrated in 2023

July and August college football world is full of one thing: overwhelming and undyielding positivity. Our friend Josh Pate likes to say there's absolutely no upside to going negative in the preseason. For the most part he's right. July and early August is when us talking heads endear ourselves to fan bases because hope springs eternal, and positivity lets a dreamer dream.

But Nerd Josh, destroyer of worlds, had the idea to do an entire roast series for the FPI top 10, including a perennial top one team, Alabama. We spent over an hour poking holes in every elite team's 2023 season before it got started. It was honestly a lot of fun. Largely because we know we're going to be wrong.

Jalen Milroe's Woes Extend Beyond Texas A&M

Alabama is replacing the school's first ever #1 draft pick in QB Bryce Young. This alone is cause for concern. Of greater concern, however, might be that no QB has stepped up to take over after he left. Jalen Milroe is very much in the running, and if he wins the job, we have our concerns.

Texas A&M was bad for Jalen. In many ways, it was excusable. First ever start vs what was likely the best pass defense in the SEC. Here's how it went:

  • 12/19
  • Yards: 111
  • Yards per Attempt: 5.82
  • Touchdowns: 3
  • Interceptions: 1
  • Lost Fumbles: 2

Outside of two short passes that the WRs took to the house, Milroe had 47 yards passing on 17 attempts (2.57 YPA).

What's more worriesome is what he couldn't do in backup time vs lesser competition: take over. Even in mop up duty vs weaker teams, Milroe only managed a 5.6 YPA on the season with 3 INTs vs 5 TDS. Against Vanderbilt, he attempted 6 passes and managed only 10 yards.

Furthermore, he never seemed comfortable leading the offense. Milroe often threw into coverage, attempted impossible to complete passes, and missed easy reads.

Milroe has the highest ceiling of any QB in the nation. But he's yet to take the next step, yet no other QB has been able to comfortably pass him.

New Faces, Everywhere

Many Bama fans were overjoyed with the announcement that Bill O'Brien and Pete Golding were leaving. Ultimately, their departure may result in addition by subtraction. However, Nick Saban has never had to replace an OC, DC, and QB in the same season at Alabama.

Year one under a new coordinator is often a year of growing pains and learning. Even with the best of them. Year two is where you truly see things getting fined tuned and firing on all cylinders.

Neither OC nor the DC hire were splashes. Tommy Rees, often maligned at Notre Dame, is coming in and bringing his equally maligned QB, Tyler Buchner with him. Kevin Steele is a solid coordinator, but Bama fans were hoping for a different Saban era retread by way of Jeremy Pruitt.

The Schedule Is Brutal

While Georgia sits in the east with their two game schedule, and Ga Tech out of conference, Alabama has to play a schedule that has Texas, and a stretch that includes Ole Miss, Miss St, Texas A&M, Arkansas, Tennessee, and LSU all in a row.

If they happen to win the west, they'll get to face Georgia in Atlanta for their troubles.

Even still, Roast Mode is highly tongue in cheek for Alabama. The defense will likely be a top 3 in the nation unit, the offense could actually improve with a more college-minded coordinator.

But if Nick Saban isn't hoisting the inferior to crystal comprised championship trophy at the end of the season, the reason or reasons why will come from what you just read.

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