Alabama’s most impressive victory is the end of the innocence for Georgia

It started innocently with a running play. Maybe Nick Saban was running out the clock to end the first half.

Uh, maybe not.

Najee Harris rumbled 14 yards, and two mid-range pass completions followed. A spike to stop the clock. And a 52-yard field goal from Will Reichard as the clock hit zero. No, that’s not a typo.

On the verge of getting run out of Bryant-Denny Stadium on Saturday night, No. 2 Alabama covered 41 yards in 20 seconds to cut into Georgia’s first-half lead to four.

By doing so, the Crimson Tide found a reprieve, slowing the momentum of the third-ranked Bulldogs. After scoring on their final four drives before intermission, Georgia had gone up 24-17. True, it wasn’t an insurmountable lead. But Georgia was getting the second-half kickoff and with Alabama’s defense reeling … well, the math is easy.

Oct 17, 2020; Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA; Georgia defensive back Lewis Cine (16) takes down Alabama running back Najee Harris (22) who loses his helmet on the play during the first quarter at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary Cosby Jr/The Tuscaloosa News via USA TODAY Sports

Three plays before the half led to a field goal, while providing Alabama a chance to catch a breath and regroup in the locker room.

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Then on one heave early in the third quarter, the momentum change became a crimson wave. Jaylen Waddle got behind a defender, Mac Jones hit him in stride and, 90 yards later, Alabama had its first lead.

Alabama defeated Georgia 41-24 in a prime-time heavyweight showdown that lived up to much of the hype.

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