Listen to Saban’s press conference following the dramatic comeback victory over the SEC Western Division foe. Alabama has defeated LSU four consecutive times and six of the last nine to take a 28-9-3 record in the state of Louisiana. The fourth ranked Crimson Tide leads the overall series 49-25-5.
Blake Sims has performed with more accuracy and efficiency but Saturday night against the Tigers was the seminal moment to date in his nine-game career as a starter. Trailing 13-10 with 50 ticks remaining on the clock, a vociferous capacity crowd of 102,321 at Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge, watched the fifth-year senior lead 4th rated Alabama (8-1, 5-1) on a 55-yard drive allowing Tide kicker Adam Griffith to convert on a 27-yard field goal attempt sending the game to overtime.
Wide receiver DeAndrew White, also a fifth-year senior, was on the receiving end of two clutch throws by Sims. First, a 16-yard toss to the ten-yard line setting up the field goal forcing overtime and then the six-yard game winning fade route touchdown in overtime. Alabama won 20-13. Sims completed 20 of 45 pass attempts for 209 yards and two touchdown passes. White had three receptions for 36 yards and a single touchdown reception.
Amari Cooper continues to assault the Alabama receiving record book. His 23-yard second quarter touchdown catch vaulted him into the top spot as the school’s all-time career leader in pass reception yardage with 2,940 yards. D.J. Hall (2004-07) held the mark with 2,923 yards. He finished the evening with eight receptions for 83 yards despite having four drops. Cooper now has 2,951 career receiving yards.
The junior receiver eclipsed two records held by Julio Jones (2008-10) set during the 2010 season - 1,133 yards on 78 receptions. A first quarter nine-yard catch moved him ahead of Jones. His final grab of the night moved him to the top as the school’s all-time single season receptions leader with 79.
Louisiana native Landon Collins has an extra special incentive to celebrate a win against LSU. The junior safety All-America candidate is 3-0 against the Tigers. He recorded seven total tackles with five solo stops and two assists in the 20-13 overtime victory Saturday evening in Baton Rouge. Fourth ranked Alabama kept their hopes alive for a national championship with a solid defensive showing holding the host team to 259 yards only 76 through the air.
Listen to Landon Collins explain the relevance of the win for him personally. Appreciation was shown by celebratory Alabama fans remaining in the stands. They serenaded him with chants of “Landon Collins” as he spoke to the media.
Reggie Ragland (6-2, 254 pounds) is a rugged linebacker built to stop the run. No. 4 Alabama (8-1, 5-1) held 14th ranked LSU (7-3, 3-3) to 183 rushing yards on 56 attempts, 42 below their season average of 225 per game on Saturday evening in Baton Rouge. The junior linebacker contributed a career high 13 tackles, four solo and nine assists against the SEC’s fifth best rushing offense.
After Alabama running back T.J. Yeldon fumbled on the six-yard line, the Tide rush defense held on three downs forcing LSU kicker Colby Delahoussaye to convert on a 39-yard field-goal with 50 seconds remaining. The Tigers, averaging 4.6 per carry on the season, were on a mission to pound the Tide defensive unit. Alabama held LSU to a 3.3 per carry average for the night. Ragland leads the team after nine games with 69 total tackles, 31 solo and 38 assists. He recorded another tackle for loss (-3 yards) leaving him with 7.5 for the season.
John Garcia Jr. contributed to this report.