Alabama Keeps its Focus
By Carlos Pineda
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Despite their recent loss to Texas A&M, the Crimson Tide are focused on finishing the season strong.
It was evident two weeks ago that Alabama could be beaten.
LSU nearly knocked off the Crimson Tide, and they would have had it not been for a heroic 28-yard touchdown pass from A.J. McCarron to T.J. Yeldon with 51 seconds left in the game.
Alabama's biggest deficit this season prior to Saturday was only three points, so it came as a surprise to many when Texas A&M took a 20-0 lead last week. The Crimson Tide could not overcome the deficit and lost their first game of the season, 29-24.
"We didn't play well as a team," said coach Nick Saban. "You guys don't think so because we won one and lost the other one. If we'd won this one, you wouldn't be concerned, either. I was concerned then."
As was the case against then-No. 5 LSU, both sides of the ball struggled in the early going against the Aggies.
While the Crimson Tide still control their destiny in the SEC, its once-clear path to Miami for the national championship is now murky. Dropping to fourth in the latest BCS standings, they rank behind three undefeated teams: Kansas State, Oregon and Notre Dame.
There is still hope to play for a national championship, albeit slim.
A win over rival Auburn pits Alabama against No. 5 Georgia in the SEC Championship, but it would need a lot of outside help in the next couple of weeks.
Last year, the Crimson Tide dropped to third in the BCS after losing to No. 1 LSU, but moved back into the top two after Oklahoma State was upset by Iowa State.
Following Saturday's loss, several players stood up in the locker room to put things in perspective and the message is clear.
"Just finish," said running back Eddie Lacy. "If we finish the rest of the games we have left, then hopefully we'll have the same chance we had last year to play for the national championship, but we just have to take it one day at a time and one week at a time and see what happens."