Lou Holtz picking Ohio State to beat Alabama, explains the issues he sees in the Crimson Tide
For college football legend Lou Holtz, there are too many issues surrounding the Alabama program to pick the Crimson Tide to win the national championship tonight against Ohio State.
On “The Crowd’s Line,” Holtz and Mark May shared their keys to the game and predictions.
“Remember this with (Steve) Sarkisian, is his heart in Alabama? Or is it at the University of Texas,” Holtz said. “Every time a coach takes another job, Mark, it has a profound effect on your team. Alabama is an outstanding football team, we understand that, but they got beat on the line of scrimmage by Notre Dame on both sides. Bama’s secondary is somewhat questionable. Their talent is outstanding, as you mentioned, three people in the Heisman (running), and they had DeVonta Smith win it. But Mark, nobody that wins the Heisman plays particularly well in the bowl game, that’s history.”
Holtz added that Ohio State QB Justin Fields is hot and cold, and if he’s hot, he’s as good as anybody in the country.
“(Trey) Sermon is really doing a tremendous job at running back. Ohio State, against the vaunted Clemson defense, had 639 yards and they held Clemson to two yards per rush,” Holtz said.
Holtz also noted that Ohio State’s pass defense is also “very, very questionable.” He said the key for Ohio State is to prevent Alabama from getting yards after the catch.
May said Alabama will take control in this game and it “won’t be close.” His prediction was Alabama wins 45-31. Holtz recalled that he picked Ohio State to beat Clemson, and he also picked the Buckeyes to win tonight, 34-27.
“I think they are going to corral the football,” Holtz said. “They have very good talent, they haven’t played well in pass defense, not because of a lack of speed and quickness, but I think if they corral the ball, they win.”
Holtz, who admitted he’s been on Field’s bandwagon for a while, said the Ohio State quarterback’s game against Clemson is typical, and he will have a similar one against Alabama.