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UA to host Charleston Southern, finale at Bryant-Denny Stadium

Cedric Mason- Touchdown Alabama Magazine

Moments of waiting, anticipating football and buying tickets have come to end, at least inside of Bryant-Denny Stadium.

Alabama head coach Nick Saban and the Crimson Tide will take the field for a final time Saturday against FCS-opponent Charleston Southern. All seniors will be recognized.

The Buccaneers enter this weekend’s game at 9-1.

Head coach Jamey Chadwell has seen production with this group in executing a triple-option offense. It is averaging 395.5 yards per game, with 230.2 of it coming on the ground. CSU chimes in with 31 points per match-up.

Buccaneers’ senior quarterback Austin Brown has completed 56.3 percent of his throws for 1,356 yards with 11 touchdowns to five interceptions in nine games.

He totals 150.7 yards per contest.

Charleston Southern will bring three talented running backs, but Darius Hammond in the leader. Hammond, a junior, enters with 734 rushing yards and six touchdowns on 120 carries.

Mike Holloway, a junior, leads the group in touchdowns (nine) and has 515 rushing yards on 87 attempts. Ben Robinson, a junior, has 398 yards rushing and four touchdowns on 55 carries.

Hammond has skills in the return game, pairing with his duties as a back. He has 217 punt return yards and 343 kick return yards. Hammond averages 138.4 all-purpose yards.

Senior wide out Nathan Perera is Brown’s primary target.

He comes in with 37 receptions for 560 yards and four touchdowns. Sophomore Kenny Dinkins is second on the team in receiving yards (270) and touchdowns with three. He has accounted for 15 catches through eight games.

Defensively, Charleston Southern has allowed 16.2 points and 101.2 rush yards a game.

Senior linebacker Aaron Brown sets the tone on defense for Charleston Southern. He anchors the group with 63 total tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, a sack, a forced fumble and a pass breakup.

Sophomore defensive lineman Anthony Ellis leads the team in sacks with 6.5. He has 34 tackles, with 14 coming for loss.

Ellis has two forced fumbles, a fumble recovery and an interception.

Defensive back Corbin Jackson leads the secondary with 41 total tackles. The Buccaneers as a whole have registered seven interceptions.

Alabama has a date with Auburn in the Iron Bowl next week, but Saban is not overlooking Charleston Southern.

He reminded the press Wednesday on the Tide’s last encounter with a triple-option team, Georgia Southern.

The Eagles scored 21 points against Alabama in 2011.

Saban said Alabama did not defend the option well in 2011, which led to Georgia Southern ripping off 302 rushing yards and a touchdown on 39 carries. Discipline and attention to details with be in full force this week.

Game Prediction: Alabama 42, Charleston Southern 7

Stephen M. Smith is a senior analyst and columnist for Touchdown Alabama MagazineYou can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @ESPN_Future.

Stephen Smith is a 2015 graduate of the University of Alabama. He is a senior writer and reporter for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. He has covered Alabama football for 10+ years and his knowledge and coverage of the Crimson Tide's program have made him among the most respected journalist in his field. Smith has been featured on ESPN and several other marquee outlets as an analyst.

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