ATHENS, GA— No. 1 Georgia is set to take on No. 8 Alabama for the SEC title game in Atlanta tomorrow. The Crimson Tide will be without their leading rusher Jas McClellan due to a reaggravated foot injury.
McClellan has tallied 803 rushing yards and 6 touchdowns this season. He’s accounted for almost 40% of the team’s rushing yards all season.
This is a big loss for Bama, and it seems that Georgia will also have some injuries on the offensive side of the ball they will have to deal with.
For the Tide, senior Roydell Williams will step into the lead back role. Williams has impressed this year as more of the big thumper in the backfield, while McClellan is more versatile and shifty. Freshman Justice Haynes and sophomore Jam Miller will back up Williams on Saturday and it will be interesting to see how many snaps and touches they get in this high-stakes contest.
Alabama has to win this game to get any chance to play in the College Football Playoff, and this is a huge blow for them. Don’t make the mistake of underestimating them though. Williams has averaged over five yards a carry so far this season and has shown to be capable in the passing game. Haynes and Miller are both really talented backs themselves despite not receiving a lot of playing time thus far. Both of them were four-star recruits in the 2022 and 2023 classes respectively and were both ranked in the top 5 at the running back position (via247sports) .
Perhaps the biggest factor in the Alabama running game on Saturday will be Jalen Milroe. He is potentially the most dangerous runner if there is green grass in front of him. Milroe has proven to be an improved passer, but his running ability opens up more dimensions for the Tide offense, and makes defenders second-guess what to do on passing downs. The Bulldogs defense will have to come up with a game plan to keep him contained in the pocket.