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Friday, September 29, 2023

Nick Saban, Alabama football players talk facing Pete Golding and Ole Miss

When Ole Miss visits Alabama football on Saturday, the Crimson Tide will see more than one familiar face. Sure, there’s Rebel head coach and former UA offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin, who’s already started to mess with Nick Saban this week.

But Pete Golding is also there, running Kiffin’s defense. He joined the Ole Miss staff this offseason after holding the same job at Alabama.

“Yeah, when Pete was here, he was a great guy,” Alabama defensive back Malachi Moore said Tuesday. “I loved him, and it’s definitely going to be good seeing his face on the sideline. His defense? You know, he wants the defense to have a nasty mentality, get the ball and play fast and aggressive. He did a good job when he was here.”

Alabama linebacker Deontae Lawson said he was more concerned about facing the Rebel offense. Offensive tackle JC Latham echoed Moore’s comment about the Ole Miss defense being aggressive.

“He has an aggressive mindset,” Latham said Monday. “He sprinkles in some complexities so it’s not always the same look. Just understanding that when we see him, he’ll probably play us a little more squared-up, but occasionally, he’ll throw in something to try and throw us off.”

Another aggressive pash rush gave Alabama fits on Saturday. After the South Florida game, Saban called the scheme one of the most exotic they’ll face all season.

The Bulls got five sacks. Alabama’s offensive line will need to be better for the Crimson Tide to move the ball against Golding and company.

According to wideout Jermaine Burton, the Tide are likely to get a solid effort from Ole Miss Saturday.

“They’re hard workers,” Burton said. “Everybody knows what they’re doing, and those guys work hard every day. So it’s really, it’s tough.”

Nick Saban said Golding’s group is improved this season. Alabama scored 30 points in a win over the Rebels last year, under Chris Partridge and Maurice Crum.

“They’re playing better on defense,” Saban said. “This is a really, really good team. We’re going to have to play our best and we need to improve to be able to do that.”

Alabama and Ole Miss are set to kick off at 2:30 p.m. Saturday. The game will be aired on CBS.

More: How Roydell Williams stepping up can help Alabama football’s offensive issues

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