Shortly after a 34-0 win over Louisiana-Monroe last Saturday, Alabama quarterback Jake Coker was asked about his next task: Hitting the road for a game at No. 8 Georgia.
This will be your first-ever start in a hostile environment, one reporter said.
Coker paused, then smirked.
“I guess we’ll see how it goes, then,” he said.
Of course, ‘Bama has already played a road game in the strict sense of the word; The Crimson Tide opened their season with a 35-17 win over Wisconsin at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
“It’s the best thing we’ve had to prepare us for a road game,” coach Nick Saban said on Wednesday night. “And that’s when he actually played his best game.”
Coker finished 15-of-21 for 215 yards and a touchdown pass against the Badgers, but subsequent poor play against Middle Tennessee State sent him to the bench.
The senior returned to the lineup in the second quarter of Alabama’s loss to Ole Miss on Sept. 19, and has kept his job since then.
“I think Jake’s getting more and more confident,” Saban said. “I think the key thing with Jake is, to play with the right passion and energy. Not to get affected by external factors and just focus on what he needs to do on that particular play. Make the right read.”
“He’s very capable of making all the plays he needs to make. So it comes down to mindset and staying focused on the right stuff.”