With Alabama nursing a 10-3 second-quarter lead in its eventual 38-10 win over Georgia Saturday afternoon, a pair of Crimson Tide freshmen stepped into the spotlight.
First up was 5-star defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick, who stormed through UGA’s punt protection and nearly grabbed the football off Collin Barber’s foot.
The pigskin bounced off Fitzpatrick and toward the end zone, where he scooped it up and waltzed across the line for Alabama’s second touchdown of the day. It was his first career score, and he tacked on a sack later in the contest.
One minute after Fitzpatrick’s big play, 5-star wideout Calvin Ridley turned heads — literally.
The 6-foot-1 Florida native blew by a pair of Georgia defenders, and quarterback Jake Coker placed a perfect ball in his hands for a 45-yard touchdown that gave the Tide a 24-3 halftime lead.
Ridley had gotten the offense started in the first quarter with a 50-yard catch-and-run down the right sideline. ‘Bama ended that drive with a field goal — the day’s first points — and never trailed.
Of course, coach Nick Saban got contributions from a host of other first-year players.
Starting cornerback Marlon Humphrey was attacked early, but held his own against the Bulldogs. He finished the day with three tackles and an athletic interception along the sidelines.
Fellow defensive back Ronnie Harrison snagged his second interception in as many weeks, and running back Bo Scarbrough (two carries, five yards) got his first touches of the year after finishing up his four-game suspension.
Alabama still has everything to play for this year, but its future could very well determine its fate in 2015.
— Dr. Saturday (@YahooDrSaturday) October 3, 2015