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Marlon Humphrey, Alabama’s secondary shuts down talented USC wide receiver

Alabama cornerback Marlon Humphrey celebrates 18-yard INT return touchdown vs. USC: Cedric Mason - Touchdown Alabama Magazine

Alabama’s defense recorded two significant stats upon the conclusion of its 52-6 victory over Southern California last week. Despite having a talented offense, USC was held without a touchdown and its best wide receiver (JuJu Smith-Schuster) was limited to one catch.

After emerging last season as a redshirt freshman, cornerback Marlon Humphrey made full use of his task against the Trojans. He lowered the boom on receiver Steven Mitchell, posting a tackle for loss and did not allow Smith-Schuster an opportunity to be effective for USC.

Marlon Humphrey big hit on USC player

He averaged 103.9 yards receiving per game in 2015; however, Smith-Schuster’s lone grab against the Crimson Tide’s secondary came in the third quarter on a nine-yard pass from Max Browne.

Humphrey’s two tackles were solid, but it was his fourth career interception that started a 42-point onslaught for the Tide. He found himself in the right spot, taking a tipped pass 18 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter. His efforts gave Alabama a 17-3 lead going into halftime, while accounting for its 11th non-offensive touchdown since the 2015 season (10 non-offensive scores).

The 6-foot-1, 196-pound sophomore was named to multiple preseason accolades and is No. 8 on Phil Steele’s top 47 draft eligible list for cornerbacks in 2017. Southern California’s passing game suffered at AT&T Stadium, as its quarterbacks completed 48.6 percent (18 of 37) for 130 yards.

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

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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