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Alabama is set to battle the Cincinnati Bearcats in the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic on December 31. This will mark the first time in playoff history that a Group of 5 school has made it to the College Football Playoff.
The Bearcats will present several challenges on each side of the ball to the Crimson Tide when we get to the New Year’s Eve matchup.
Quarterback Desmond Ridder is a talented player who can beat you with both his arm and his legs.
Defensively, the Bearcats will attack and rely on their star defensive backs to shut down the Alabama passing attack.
In my mind of the keys to the game will be how well Alabama defends the run.
Cincinnati has a great rushing attack led by former Alabama running back Jerome Ford.
Ford has had a phenomenal junior season for the Bearcats. On the season, Ford has amassed 1,242 rushing yards and 19 touchdowns while averaging a whopping 6.2 yards per carry.
Ford has been a home run hitter for the Bearcats this season. He has two runs of 79 yards on the season plus additional runs of 43, 50, and 75.
Alabama will need to contain the explosive Ford to keep the Bearcat offense in check.
Kickoff for the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic is set for 2:30 p.m. CT on ESPN.
Stay tuned to Roll Tide Wire for all the latest on the Crimson Tide!