Well that question was answered Saturday when Alabama beat Ole Miss 33-14. In the first quarter, the Rebels took a 7-6 lead—the first time the Tide has trailed in regulation since the first quarter of last year's Tennessee game. But that didn't last long—just 15 seconds—as Bama went on to score two touchdowns in less than three minutes.
2. After forcing 12 turnovers in its first three games, Alabama didn't have any takeaways last week against Florida Atlantic. But the Tide was back to its old tricks Saturday, forcing three—interceptions from Dee Milliner, Robert Lester and Deion Belue—making that 15 total on the season.
"Those turnovers were really the difference in the game," head coach Nick Saban said. "The game was 7-6, and then we got the turnovers, and we got a little lead. Turnovers are always that way."
3. Christion Jones scored the Tide's first touchdown by returning a kickoff 99 yards to the end zone. Coming into the weekend, Jones had just two returns for 25 yards. By game's end, he had three for 142 yards.
4. Ole Miss certainly presented Alabama with its greatest challenge so far this season, offensively and defensively. The Rebels' hurry-up offense was able to drive, racking up 218 yards of total offense. Though it may not seem like much, heading into this game the Tide was holding opponents to an average of 185 ypg.
When the uptempo offense was clicking, the Rebels were impressive. There weren't really many explosive plays, but they were able to move the ball on the defense like other teams haven't been able to do.
Defensively, Ole Miss played tight, forced Alabama to kick four times in the red zone and kept the Tide to its lowest total yards so far this season (305). They were also good at halting the run, holding Bama to 125 rushing yards.
"Defensively, we were in some tough spots out there," Saban said. "It was really difficult to sub players. At times, I think we got tired on the longer drives when we couldn't sub players because if they don't sub, you really can't sub because when they snap it quick, you aren't ready.
"We weren't ready to play when they hit the first big touchdown on their first drive. Guys were still looking at the bench trying to get a signal.
As the game went on, the players got used to the speed.
5. Injury report: Backup noseguard Brandon Ivory (ankle) didn't play, wide receiver DeAndrew White (knee) headed to the locker room after the first series and returned in the second quarter in street clothes on crutches, running back Dee Hart has a "possible knee" that will be evaluated Sunday and starting cornerback Deion Belue hurt his shoulder, although Saban said he doesn't think it's serious and should be a "week or two type deal."
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