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Tide, Tagovailoa Continue to Wow

By BJ Bennett
SouthernPigskin.com
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The Crimson Tide are absolutely overwhelming.

It truly is amazing. Alabama has won 43 of its last 45 games, yet continues to somehow get better. After Saturday's 45-23 victory over Jimbo Fisher and nationally-ranked Texas A&M, who recently took Clemson to the brink, the top-ranked Crimson Tide are now 4-0 and have outscored their opponents by an astounding total of 215-51. Not only does Alabama obviously appear to be the best team in the country, it really doesn't even look all that close. The Crimson Tide are absolutely overwhelming.

The further evolution of dynamic quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, fresh off his iconic national title fame, has been the remarkable catalyst this fall. Emerging from a high-profile competition with accomplished veteran Jalen Hurts, Tagovailoa has been college football's premier signal caller. Against the Aggies, he completed 22-of-30 passes for 387 yards and four touchdowns, all career highs, adding a rushing score. Tagovailoa, even with staggering pre-season expectations following after his grand finale on the big stage, has exceeded expectations.

With the spotlight on, Tagovailoa's start set the tone. He threw a 30-yard touchdown strike to DeVonta Smith, the very same connection that came with a championship, on Alabama's very first offensive play. Tagovailoa never looked back. By halftime, he was 17-of-20 with four total touchdowns. 

One-quarter of the way through the regular season, Tagovailoa now has the following stat line: 72.5% passing, 1,033 yards, 12.9 yards per attempt, 12 touchdowns, zero interceptions. He leads the nation in passer rating. Oh, and the true sophomore is just getting started.

It goes without saying that Tagovailoa has proven to be the ultimate game-changer; correspondingly, the Crimson Tide look as staggering as ever.

Team-wide, Alabama has largely been unstoppable. Running back Damien Harris is set to pass the 2,500-yard mark and he isn't even the Crimson Tide's leading rusher. Jerry Jeudy already has six receiving touchdowns, a number that would have tied last year's team-high. Tackle Jonah Williams is all-everything. The defense, with stars all over, is, well, an Alabama defense. After giving up a long score to Ole Miss on the first play of the game two weeks ago, the Rebels didn't score again all day. The Crimson Tide held Texas A&M quarterback Kellen Mond to 198 yards passing; he threw for 430 against Clemson.    

Part of what makes this machine so efficient is that all of the aforementioned still isn't enough. Nick Saban wasn't happy with the way Alabama finished the game and said post-game that a lot of things still need to improve. In Tuscaloosa, more is the constant standard. 

In evaluating Alabama's dominant start, all you can say is: wow. The near-perfect Tagovailoa adds another dimension. Though Saban and staff will make sure the focus remains, the Crimson Tide won't face a ranked team until November. Expect the numbers, for Tagovailoa and the team, to only pile up even more. Alabama has already made a powerful statement. The Crimson Tide are well on their way.

History may prove to be Alabama's only contender.

BJ Bennett - B.J. Bennett is SouthernPigskin.com's founder and publisher. He is the co-host of "Three & Out" with Kevin Thomas and Ben Troupe on the "Southern Pigskin Radio Network". Email: bj@espncoastal.com / Twitter: @BJBennettSports