Despite having numerous offensive difficulties, the Crimson Tide prevailed.
TAMPA, Florida – They say that a win is a win.
In a slow-paced game that featured weather delays, quarterback substitutions, and many other shocks, No. 10 Alabama defeated Group of Five opponent USF by a final score of 17-3 on a sometimes rainy, sometimes sunny day in Florida.
For the first time this season, the Crimson Tide started Notre Dame transfer Tyler Buchner as quarterback in place of Jalen Milroe, who started the previous two games. Before being replaced just before halftime by redshirt freshman Ty Simpson, Buchner completed only five of his 14 throw attempts for a loss of 34 yards.
The USF offense was effectively shut down by the Alabama defense, who only gave up a field goal that came off a short field because of a botched punt.
A 45-yard pass to tight end CJ Dippre in the third quarter launched Alabama’s first touchdown drive despite Simpson being pressed and sacked five times during the whole game. Late in the fourth quarter, Simpson scored Alabama’s second touchdown with a quarterback sneak to put the victory beyond doubt.
Beyond simply the quarterback problem, Alabama has many more issues to resolve before No. 17 Ole Miss visits Bryant-Denny Stadium for one of the biggest games in college football the next week.