Alabama’s Damien Harris, Ross Pierschbacher receive SEC honors
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Alabama’s offensive line and rushing attack dictated the attitude for last week’s matchup against Vanderbilt from the start. It was pure domination on the side of the Crimson Tide, as it totaled 38 first downs, 677 total yards (496 rushing), six touchdowns in the red zone and a 59-0 win.
Running back Damien Harris and offensive lineman Ross Pierschbacher were named Southeastern Conference Players of the Week today, following their performances.
Harris, the league’s Offensive Player of the Week, turned in career-highs in yards (151) and touchdowns (three) while averaging 12.6 yards per carry. Seven of his 12 runs went for first downs (58.3 percent) — including a 61-yard burst to the end zone in the first quarter.
61-Yard TD Run Alabama RB @DHx34 #BamavsVandy pic.twitter.com/vo8R5QlA5C
— InsideBamaRecruiting (@RTRnews) September 23, 2017
Pierschbacher, the SEC’s Offensive Lineman of the Week, talked after the game on how Alabama’s front line responded to the challenge provided from the coaching staff.
He cleared the way for the Tide’s outing, especially six rushing touchdowns.
Hailing from Cedar Falls, Iowa, Pierschbacher graded out at 90 percent and neither commit a penalty nor allowed a sack or quarterback hurry.
Behind the junior, Alabama converted nine of 15 third downs – 60 percent – and averaged 7.3 yards a play.
Pierschabacher assisted all six backs to totaling at least five yards a carry, and for true freshmen Najee Harris and Brian Robinson, the duo combined for 121 yards rushing with a touchdown on 15 tries.
Even Ronnie Clark, who sustained two Achilles injuries in his career, found positive yardage behind the offensive line as he collected 48 yards rushing on 10 carries. Before coming to Alabama, Clark was a four-star recruit from Calera (Ala.) High School that signed in 2014.
After earning this honor from the league, both Harris and Pierschbacher turned their attention to this week’s preparation for Ole Miss. The Tide will host the Rebels at Bryant-Denny Stadium.
Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @Smsmith_TDALMag.