Kirby Smart knows Alabama football. He was an assistant on some of the best teams in college football history, ones that were borderline unbeatable. Now on the opposing sideline, he does not think this year's Crimson Tide team is as unbeatable.
Smart is an Alabama native who coached under Nick Saban from 2007-15 before leaving for his alma mater, Georgia. He was part of four national championship teams and four others that were good enough to win the title. The Tide lost 12 total games from 2008-15 — an outrageous winning clip of .891. And while they were not technically unbeatable in seven of those eight seasons, because, somehow, they only had one undefeated season (2009), it took a monumental efforts and series of perfectly orchestrated events to knock off mighty Alabama.
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Kirby Smart does not believe the feat of beating Alabama is as difficult as in years' past. During Saturday morning's press conference, two days before Georgia hosts Alabama in the College Football Playoff National Championship, Smart said this:
“Alabama is not as unbeatable as they’ve been.”
Given Saban's propensity to use any bit of Alabama criticism as motivation — regardless of whether the criticism is an accurate representation of opinions or not — it's a safe bet this quote will either be plastered throughout their locker room on Monday and/or repeatedly uttered by the coaching staff in the coming days.