Lane Kiffin spent three seasons at Alabama, working under Nick Saban as the team's offensive coordinator, and in those three years, Kiffin was a part of four College Football Playoff games and helped Alabama win a national title in 2015. Kiffin has a unique insight into the Alabama program, as well as the matchup between Alabama and Georgia in this year's title game. According to Kiffin, it's a matchup that tilts in the Tide's favor.
"It's the matchup that Alabama wanted," Kiffin told ESPN. "If you look at who beats Alabama, it's spread teams with a quarterback that can move around like Baker Mayfield. They probably wouldn't admit it, but Alabama would prefer this matchup rather than the other way. Whenever Alabama has played the more traditional offenses, that is when Alabama usually shuts them down -- the Georgias, the LSUs. So that favors them.
"Georgia doesn't run the quarterback, but if you watched Georgia in the [Rose Bowl], those backs are really good. Alabama is going to have to stay in the gaps, because it's not like you're going to run these guys down. Normally, Alabama is so fast that they don't give up explosive run plays."
Kiffin also goes on to mention that Georgia playing a freshman quarterback in Jake Fromm is something that benefits Alabama as well, even if Fromm has been impressive for the Bulldogs.
As for his theory about the types of teams that typically give Alabama the most trouble, it's hard to disagree with Kiffin.
Alabama has lost seven games since the beginning of the 2013 season. Those seven losses came against: 2013 Auburn (spread offense, mobile QB), 2013 Oklahoma (spread offense, mobile QB), 2014 Ole Miss (spread offense), 2014 Ohio State (spread offense), 2015 Ole Miss (spread offense), 2016 Clemson (spread offense, mobile QB), and 2017 Auburn (spread offense).
There isn't a pro-style, Alabama-esque offense in the bunch. Of course, what those teams also have in common is that they were all quite talented, which is something Georgia has plenty of. So even if the matchup isn't favorable for Georgia, it's not as if the Bulldogs aren't capable of pulling off the upset.