The 2018-19 edition of the Alabama Invitational is back. The second of two playoff semifinals will kick off at 8PM EST. Fourth seed Oklahoma will be taking on Alabama.

How They Got Here: Oklahoma

The story of the Sooners’ season has been Kyler Murray and the offense. One of the most prolific offenses in the history of the sport paced the Sooners to yet another Big XII title and return to the playoff.

Oklahoma’s defense has been downright putrid. The Sooners had a few close calls, but not because they couldn’t score. Anyone & everyone was scoring on Oklahoma this year, but the offense never relented.

Texas thought they had dashed Oklahoma’s chances at the Big XII title and the playoff only to fall to those same Sooners in Arlington.

How They Got Here: Alabama

Alabama got here but destroying absolutely everything that was laid in front of them.

Long known for a controlled, efficient offense, Alabama now sports a high-powered offense as good as any in the nation. Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa essentially plays point guard for an uber-talented group of skill players. The offensive line still paved the way for a stable of running backs.

A tireless perfectionist, Nick Saban ensured that an elite offense would not be accompanied by a drop-off in defensive performance. In back-to-back weeks, Alabama shut out LSU and Mississippi State. Even aside from the shutouts, the defense was just as astounding in just about every other game.

Player to Watch: Oklahoma

Kyler Murray is the obvious choice here. He won the Heisman directing an offense that was essentially unstoppable all season. His future may be in centerfield for the Oakland Athletics and you can see why; he runs like a gazelle and he throws with such tremendous accuracy and velocity.

Kyler Murray truly was the most outstanding player in college football this season. The Heisman Trophy he won confirms that.

He’ll get at least one more afternoon to be college football’s most outstanding player.

Player to Watch: Alabama

Jerry Jeudy is the latest in a long line of Alabama wideouts that are destined for stardom. He’s so talented and so good that catching footballs, the NFL still feels like a waste of his talent. He could have a field day against this defense as it’s easily the worst one he’ll have seen all season.

Biggest Matchup: Oklahoma DBs vs Bama Receivers

Oklahoma has been absolutely dreadful on the defensive side of the ball this year. The Crimson Tide have what could be the most talented group of pass catchers they have ever had.

To win this game, Oklahoma must make a few stops and win the turnover battle. An interception or a big stop in a shootout is all the difference you need sometimes.

Gamblers’ Corner

Alabama is favored by 14 and 77.5 is the over/under. These two offenses should top that some time around the third quarter. Anyone who takes the under in this game is extremely dumb or extremely brave.

Prediction

Oklahoma beat Alabama in the Sugar Bowl a few years ago as a massive underdog. Not this time, Alabama pulls off the win, 63-42.

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