We're getting into title game mode now folks and we've got five match ups that everyone should tune into during the game. Here at ITB, just like the rest of the blogosphere, we love the lists so we'll be dropping one of these five up until title time folks. The five match ups we're most looking forward to for the BCS Championship Game are:
Terrence Cody vs Huey, Hall & Tanner
Jordan Shipley vs Javier Arenas
Sergio Kindle vs Davis & Carpenter
Earl Thomas vs Greg McElroy
Rolando McClain vs Colt McCoy
Each of these match ups will be crucial to the success of both teams and are at the heart of Nick Saban and Mack Brown's gameplans. There will be plenty attention paid to the quarterbacks but you'll notice we've decided to include some of big boys in our discussion so that we can give them their due as well.
First up on our match ups to watch is the biggest big nasty of them all Terrence Cody against the Texas interior three offensive trio of guards Michael Huey and Charlie Tanner with center Chris Hall.
Read more for the keys to this 1,285 pound match up...
Why is this match up important?
Texas is a run by committee team with four guys over 300 yards rushing. They use the ground game as a way to keep teams honest and rely on the pass to truly move the football. For the Crimson Tide stopping the run is paramount as their attack becomes more potent when they make teams become one dimensional.
Who will win this match up and how?
Ndamukong Suh abused Texas' offensive line in the run and the passing game as he tossed Colt McCoy around like a rag doll and used the bull rush, swim move, rip and spin to make the Horns look silly. In Terrence Cody the Horns face a very different but equally daunting task; the space eater. While Suh is an unstoppable force Mount Cody is more of an immovable object. At 365 pounds Cody commands a double team on every play and more than once has been triple teamed during this SEC season.
Look for Texas' trio to use a myriad of techniques against Cody in an attempt to at least work the run game into the rotation. The mountain of a man will be double teamed, trapped, cut and triple teamed in an effort to slow his progress, misdirect him and move him out of the middle to run the football. Cody has seen all of these techniques in his SEC playing career and has yet to be truly neutralized by any of them.
Another assett that Texas will use in an attempt to neutralize Cody when running the football is lateral runs. They'll use Vondrell McGee and Cody Johnson in motion to get the sprint sweep going side to side. Cody doesn't move down the line as well as smaller defensive tackles so the quick action will allow one blocker to occupy Cody while guards Huey and/or Tanner pull out to attack the perimeter Alabama defenders.
In the passing game Cody is less of a sack threat than Suh but he is a solid "pocket pusher" who helps blitzers including Arenas and McClain take a shorter path to the quarterback. Here is where Texas' bread is buttered and where they will see the most success in their full game battle against T-Cody. Look for center Chris Hall to cut Cody early to slow his surge off the line and keep his hands down against McCoy and Texas' short passing game.
Look for Cody to clog up the middle easily against the smaller Texas interior three but the smaller quicker line will get some help from the Texas play calling. Cody gets the In The Bleachers nod here as the force that will be triumphant in the end as his size will wear down the Texas blocking trio allowing the rest of the Bama defense to roll to victory.