ESPN2/WatchESPN: West Virginia vs. No. 2 Alabama Live

(Sporting Alert) — West Virginia meets powerhouse Alabama in the the college football schedule Saturday, August 30 at 3:30 PM at the Georgia Dome, Atlanta GA.

Alabama Crimson Tide will have Blake Sims as the starting quarterback in replacement to AJ McCarron, who has a successful career by winning two national titles. Nick Saban was contemplating which to select between Jake Coker and Sims until Friday.

Coker and Sims were in tight competition for the starting quarterback to fill in the shoes of McCarron. As the selection is already made, Sims has to look and to do it in his own way. Sims must brush aside everything about how big the quarterback he replaced, but rather he needs to concentrate on how to keep his offense rolling.

Coach Saban understands what it takes to get back into the National Championship game. Alabama finished 11-2, losing to Auburn in that stunning game in the final play of the regular season and to Oklahoma in the BCS Sugar Bowl was a failure.

Alabama possesses the stingy defense that would separate the two teams. It’s more likely that this game would be won by forcing turnovers in favor of the Crimson Tide. Offensively, Sims will have the help of tailbacks Derrick Henry, TJ Yeldon and Kenyan Drake. Furthermore, receivers like Amari Cooper and Christion Jones will be important for the offense to flourish.

Cooper looks for a healthy 2014 season to be effective in making great plays when the game is on the line. Last year, he caught 45 catches for 736 yards and four touchdowns. Injuries bothered Cooper to limit his yards and his time on the field.

West Virginia Mountaineers hope to be back winning games. Not great that the Mountaineers are facing a big mountain to open the season. West Virginia finished 4-8 last year and the record showed how it needs to install a new offensive approach as well as defensive schemes.

Clint Trickett starts at the quarterback after coach Dana Holgorsen picked him, despite of him throwing for seven touchdowns against seven interceptions last year.

The Mountaineers need to have the defense to stifle the offense of the Crimson Tide. West Virginia’s defense was the problem last year when they allowed an average of 455 yards per game to the opposing teams. In football, there’s always room for improvements.

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