Three keys, prediction for Alabama-Michigan Rose Bowl: Jalen Milroe is a new challenge
The Posts Zach Braziller gives three keys and a prediction for Mondays Rose Bowl between Michigan and Alabama in Pasadena, Calif.
Can Michigan control Milroe?
The Wolverines havent faced a dual threat such as Jalen Milroe all year, and the Alabama quarterback had a fantastic season after a slow start, producing 35 total touchdowns. The sophomore torched quality teams like Georgia, LSU, Tennessee and Ole Miss, and is an early 2024 Heisman Trophy favorite.
3Jalen Milroe’s dual-threat ability will provide a challenge that Michigan hasn’t faced this season. Getty Images3Jalen Milroe has emerged as an early favorite to win the Heisman Trophy in 2024. AP## McCarthy has to find his game
J.J. McCarthy has struggled of late, throwing just one touchdown pass in his last five games while averaging 166.2 yards through the air. Thats not going to get it done against Alabama. Michigan wont win, or even be close, if it is one dimensional. But it wont be easy for McCarthy to bust out against elite Crimson Tide cornerbacks Kool-Aid McKinstry and Terrion Arnold.
Who wins up front?
Michigan allowed only 18 sacks all year, the 28th fewest in the country. Alabama was 12th in getting to the quarterback, racking up 38 sacks. Crimson Tide edge rusher Dallas Turner (10 sacks, two forced fumbles, 14.5 tackles for loss, 13 quarterback hits) is as good as anyone at his position in the country, and the Wolverines will be without top offensive lineman Zak Zinter due to a broken leg he suffered in the Ohio State game.
3J.J. McCarthy AP## Prediction
Alabama 34, Michigan 20
Alabama is battle-tested, it is balanced and it will have the best player on the field in Milroe. It beat Georgia, which was clearly one of the four best teams in the country despite not getting selected to the playoff, lost to Texas and also knocked off Tennessee, Ole Miss and LSU. Michigan isnt even the best team the Crimson Tide has faced this year, and it will show.
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