It would be difficult to make the case that any team in the FBS is capable of beating the Alabama Crimson Tide; they have overwhelmed every team they have played. But what about a team outside the FBS?
Well, as far as coach Nick Saban is concerned, why even bother?
After several weeks of Power 5 opponents, Alabama will play the FCS Chattanooga Mocs in what is expected to be tantamount to a week off for the Crimson Tide. But what about Mocs coach Russ Huesman? Surely he can inject some rah!-rah! into the matchup and get us excited about it:
Everyone in the country knows it isn’t a great matchup. We’re going to play hard and that’s all we can ask. We’re going to go play a clean, hard football game and see what happens.
Well…why even play the game then?
Saban has been a proponent of playing only Power 5 opponents for several years now, and addressed this question directly:
Through the years, I’ve been an advocate of playing all Power 5 conference schools, playing more conference games. I know it’s a more difficult schedule but I think it would be better for the fans, it would be better for … in the playoffs right now, if you want to talk about that, that system is if you lose a game, you’re on thin ice. If you lose two, it’s almost impossible.
Saban raises a good point, even if his Crimson Tide don’t really have to worry about failing to qualify for the College Football Playoff right now. There are currently several quality teams competing for three vacant spots in the playoff; the deciding factor will likely be strength of schedule.
If the playoff started today, those spots would go to Ohio State, Michigan and Clemson; leaving out Louisville and Washington. Why? You guessed it, the strength of schedule.
While games like this are important for programs like Chattanooga’s bottom line, it often comes at the expense of the FBS team. This facet of the college game is unlikely to change going forward though, and coach Saban will just have to beat these boys silly with a smile on his face.
Photo Credit: Twitter