Tide Stays Alive In College Football Playoff

A one loss Alabama (6-1, 3-1) team is in a playoff mode every week trying to stay alive in the College Football Playoff race. The Crimson Tide had a resounding 41-23 victory over previously undefeated Texas A&M (5-1, 2-1) before an overflowing capacity crowd of 105,733 at Kyle Field in College Station.

Nick Saban formulated a game plan suited to test the front seven of Texas A&M. The Aggies 12th ranked SEC rushing defense allowing an average of 182.6 ypg were not able to contend with running back Derrick Henry and an Alabama offensive line determined execute the stated goal. The Heisman Trophy candidate ran for a career high of 178 yards by halftime before finishing the game with 236 on 32 carries. His first half two touchdowns runs of 55 and 6 yards leave him with 13 for the season.

The improving Tide secondary held the league’s no. 2 passing offense to 283 yards, nine below the SEC Western Division foe’s average of 292. Rushing yards were sparse as Bama’s front seven stifled Texas A&M. The 25 attempts yielded only 32 yards on the ground for an offense averaging 188 per game.

Kicker Adam Griffith was successful on all five extra point attempts and field goals from 32 and 20 yards.

An unprecedented school record of three interceptions returned for touchdowns by defensive backs Minkah Fitzpatrick and Eddie Jackson contributed to the convincing win. Fitzpatrick started the scoring with his 33-yard catch and run down the left sideline as the Tide took a 7-0 lead in the first quarter. Jackson had the third longest return for an interception in school history with a second quarter 93-yard sprint to the end zone. Fitzpatrick capped the day with a 55-yard theft to give Alabama the final margin of victory.

Nick Saban addressed the assembled media and spoke of all three phases of the game – offense, defense and the kicking game.


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