Nick Saban praises Emmanuel Forbes, Mississippi State secondary

Alex Weberby:Alex Weber10/21/22

Alabama needs to rebound this week following the Tennessee loss and ahead of their bye week. Before the time off, the Tide get Mississippi State at home, who just fell to Kentucky by 10 points in Lexington. While the Bulldogs are an offense-first team, but in 2022, they have played really good defense as well.

Part of the reason why is their star defensive back Emmanuel Forbes, who is lookin like a first round pick more by the week. Against Kentucky, Forbes made a play that nearly singlehandedly brought State back into the game. On a 4th-down and two near midfield, Forbes picked off a screen pass and took it for six to trim the UK lead to three.

That dangerous of a player in the defensive backfield is definitely on Nick Saban’s radar. He had nothing but praise for Forbes in all phases of the game this week.

“He’s a really good player. You know, he’s a playmaker on special teams too. That guy’s a really good cover corner. He’s very aggressive, he’s very instinctive, he’s got really good ball skills. You know, he’s a an outstanding player, no doubt,” said Saban.

He was also asked about MSU’s knack for turning teams over, since the Bulldogs are near the top of the country in forcing takeaways.

“They lead the SEC in forced turnovers, right. Well, they got a lot of ball-hawkers. They got an experienced defensive team. They play a lot of pressure defense. There’s a lot of movement, a lot of stunting, a lot of blitzing, a lot of penetrating. And, you know, they got some good pass rushers. But we continue to try to create an awareness with our team about attacking the ball. And sometimes, you just got players that do that and sometimes it’s hard to get players to have confidence that they can tackle the next guy and can attack the ball.”

Nick Saban would love to see his defense make some of those plays, too. On Saturday, though, it’ll be all about preventing those possession-changing mistakes on the offensive end.

“You know, these guys got some guys that got good ball skills in the secondary too. So that always helps. But I wish we would get more turnovers, take care of the ball better. And we’re going to have to do that in this game. Because that’ll be a a critical piece to having success in the game.”