It is a program that thrives on signing top-ranked classes in recruiting each February, but Alabama football has also been fortunate to land some of the best graduate transfer athletes in college football.
Nick Saban brought in Jacob Coker from Florida State in 2014, and he led the Crimson Tide to a College Football Playoff National Championship as its starting quarterback the next year. Richard Mullaney, a transfer from Oregon State, came to Alabama in the summer of 2015 and made a huge impact at wide receiver on the national title team. A native of South Bend, Ind., Gehrig Dieter arrived at the program before the fall of 2016 from Bowling Green and helped the Tide win a Southeastern Conference title that season. Now, Alabama has Landon Dickerson in his second year as a transfer from the Seminoles.
The 6-foot-6, 325-pounder has been a blessing for the Tide on its offensive line.
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He has played both right guard and center, but he solidifies the unit at center. After a productive season in 2019, Dickerson has been even better this year. Through six games, he has missed only two assignments (410 snaps) and has not allowed a sack of Mac Jones. He makes the calls for offensive unit that’s given up only eight sacks all season, including five of Jones.
Dickerson has the Tide in the top-10 nationally for scoring offense (47.2 ppg, No. 3), total offense (555.2 ypg, No. 6) and passing yards per game (380, No. 3). When it comes to the SEC, Alabama ranks first in scoring offense and passing offense while being second for total offense. In protecting Jones, Dickerson has his quarterback leading the conference for completion percentage (78.5), passer rating (210.3), passing yards/game (366) and total quarterback rating (95.6) this season.
He also has Najee Harris ranking second in the SEC for carries (124), second for yards (714) and first for touchdowns (14) at the running back position. Dickerson has guided Harris to three 100-yard rushing performance, including one 200-yard game versus Ole Miss. His output for rushing scores is second in the NCAA and Harris averages 119 yards rushing per contest.
As the Tide prepares to face Kentucky on Saturday, Dickerson was featured in its hype video on Twitter as “The Anchor.”
— Alabama Football (@AlabamaFTBL) November 20, 2020
On Thursday’s airing of “Hey Coach,” Saban said the matchup against the Wildcats will have a tough, old school feel to it in terms of defense and a power run game. Defensively, he said Kentucky tends to play a lot of zone coverage and it does not surrender a ton of big plays. He praised the physicality of its team and the way Mark Stoops goes about coaching it.
While the Tide is not taking Kentucky lightly, the Wildcats better be prepared for this group.
For a young man who uses a wooden block as the bumper on his truck, Dickerson is the definition of toughness.
Throughout the video, different voices of sports media compared Alabama’s offensive front to Kentucky’s defensive front.
It will be a matchup in the trenches to see which unit can flex more muscle. Not too many points may be scored; however, Dickerson is about controlling the line of scrimmage. He anticipates doing this a lot at Bryant-Denny Stadium this weekend.
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