Richardson Has Top Rushing Game In SEC

When Alabama gave up a first drive touchdown to Ole Miss in Oxford Saturday evening, it marked Crimson Tide opponents having scored 49 points in seven games this season, an average of a touchdown per game. By the time the night was done, Bama had scored more points against the Rebels – 52 – than Alabama has given up total to seven opponents this year.

This week Alabama, 7-0 overall and 4-0 in Southeastern Conference games, hosts Tennessee. The Vols are 3-3 overall and 0-3 in conference games after being thrashed by LSU, 38-7, Thursday.

Kickoff Saturday in Bryant=Denny Stadium will be at 6:15 p.m. CDT with television coverage by ESPN2.

Bama defeated UT in Knoxville last year by a 41-10 margin and now leads the all-time series by 47-38-7.

The SEC has five teams ranked in the latest Harris Interactive Poll (1-LSU, 2-Alabama, 10-Arkansas, 13-South Carolina, 21-Auburn), five in the latest USA Today Coaches Poll (2-LSU, 3-Alabama, 10-Arkansas, 12-South Carolina, 23-Auburn) and six in the latest AP poll (1-LSU, 2-Alabama, 10-Arkansas, 14-South Carolina, 19-Auburn, 24-Georgia).

Alabama has not allowed an opponent to score more than 14 points during the first seven games of the 2011 season and eight straight games dating back to the 2011 Capital One Bowl against Michigan State. The 2011 Crimson Tide defense leads the nation in scoring defense, surrendering an average of just seven points per game while recording two shutouts (41-0 vs. North Texas and 34-0 over Vanderbilt).

The last time Alabama held its opponent to 14 points or less for at least seven straight games was 1992 when the Tide did it nine straight times to open the season. That Bama team went on to an undefeated season and the national championship.

The school record for consecutive games holding an opponent to 14 points or less is 31 from 1960-63. The Crimson Tide did it in the last three games of the 1960 season and all 11 games of the 1961 and 1962 campaigns before the streak ended in the seventh game of the 1963 season when Mississippi State scored 19 in a 20-19 UA win.

Alabama's Trent Richardson, who rushed for four touchdowns against Ole Miss, is third in nation in scoring (13.71 points per game) and fourth in rushing (130.29 yards per game).

Richardson's 183 rushing yards rushing against the Rebels was his sixth 100-plus yards rushing game of season and 10th of his career, both current SEC highs.

Last Saturday only two SEC backs rushed for 100 or more yards, and both of them did it for Alabama. Richardson had the best rushing game of the weekend with 17 carries for 183 yards and four touchdowns vs. Mississippi. Third team tailback Jalston Fowler, who had nine carries for 125 yards and two touchdowns against the Rebels, was the only other SEC back to crack 100. Additionally, fourth team tailback Blake Sims ranked sixth in rushing in the SEC last weekend with five carries for 74 yards.

Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron had the second best passing game among SEC quarterbacks last weekend. McCarron completed 19 of 24 passes for 224 yards and a touchdown and did not suffer an interception.

The SEC has nine of the top[ 33 teams in the nation in pass defense, led by South Carolina (second) and Alabama (fifth).

In 45 home games this season, SEC stadiums have been filled to a 95.78 per cent capacity. The total attendance is 3,448,796, an average of 76,640 fans per game. Alabama has played to all capacity crowds, including four home games of 101,821, a road game at Penn State that drew over 107,000, a road game at Florida that drew over 90,000 and was the second largest crowd at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, and a road game at Ole Miss before over 61,000 which was fourth largest crowd in the history of Vaught-Hemingway Stadium.

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