WATCH: Alabama’s top offensive lineman recognizes Georgia football progress, standard
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — The Georgia football program and Alabama share four common opponents this season, and the numbers suggest the Tide fared better.
Alabama offensive tackle Jonah Williams, however, isn’t interested in playing transitive properties where the Bulldogs are concerned with the SEC Championship Game fast approaching.
“I think that if you start daisy-chaining games and saying, ‘Well, they played this person like this, we played them like this,’ it’s not really a fair matchup because we want to play our best game each week and they want to play their best game each week,” said Williams, a projected top 10 NFL draft pick. “So, that’s kind of what we’re expecting out of them in Atlanta.”
The No. 1-ranked Crimson Tide (12-0) plays No. 5-ranked Georgia (11-1) at 4 p.m. on Saturday as Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.
Williams said Alabama had an idea they’d be seeing the Bulldogs this season.
“During the season you try to focus week to week, but we know Georgia is obviously building quite a program over there, and they have done some really good things the past couple of years,” Williams said. “We had an idea that if everything played out we might be seeing them in the future.”
Alabama has looked like a lock all season, out-scoring its first 12 opponents by 21 points or more, a feat accomplished only once before in college history by 1888 Yale.
Williams, however, takes a similar approach to that legacy as head coach Nick Saban, who said the postseason is what matters most.
“None of that will matter if we don’t win out, (and) no one’s going to talk about how well we did in the regular season,” Williams said on Monday. “These last three games are way more important than the previous 12 combined, so it’s not much of a legacy if we don’t finish it the right way.
“Maybe in January or February we’ll think about it, but right now we’re just focused on the next game.”
Williams realizes the teams are different than when they met last in the College Football Playoff Championship Game, a 26-23 overtime win for Alabama.
But he also sees enough similarities to have an idea what to expect.
“Whatever happened last year does’n’t have any say in what will happen this year,” Williams said. “Personnel is different, they have the same coaches, they play to the same standard.
“I don’t think that there’s a whole lot of differences aside from the names on the jerseys, and even then they have a bunch of returning guys.”
Williams said “there’s definitely a familiarity” because of the carryover and similarity in coaching philosophy.
But, he added, “we look at every game as a new challenge.”
Alabama OT Jonah Williams
DawgNation coverage from Tuscaloosa