It’s 35th 10-Win Season For Alabama

Alabama’s 56-6 win over Charleston Southern Saturday at Bryant-Denny Stadium was the Crimson Tide’s 10th win of the season (10-1), marking the 35th season Bama has achieved the 10-win plateau.

It is the eighth straight year that Alabama has won at least 10 games under Coach Nick Saban.

Alabama and Oklahoma are the all-time leaders in 10-win seasons. Both came into Saturday with 34 seasons with at least 10 wins and both were 9-1 before playing Saturday. Oklahoma defeated TCU, 30-29.

Before Saban, the previous Bama record for consecutive 10-win seasons was five, set under Coach Paul Bryant’s Tide teams, 1971-75.

Saban is the 11th coach in school history to lead his team to a 10-win season and is the fifth coach in school history to have more than one 10-win campaign. Bryant had a school-record 12 seasons of 10 or more wins, while Saban is second with seven. Other coaches to reach the milestone include: Gene Stallings (4), Wallace Wade (2), Frank Thomas (2), Harold “Red” Drew (1), Ray Perkins (1), Bill Curry (1), Mike DuBose (1), Dennis Franchione (1) and Mike Shula (1).

Alabama had another 10-win season under Shula in 2005, but 10 of those wins were vacated by the NCAA.

Here are other Alabama football notes following Saturday’s game:

There were two first-time starters for the Tide against Charleston Southern. Hale Hentges started at tight end and Koren Kirvan started at right tackle.

Alabama’s 49 points in the first half against Charleston Southern were the most in a single half under Saban at Bama. The previous high under Saban was 45 at Duke in 2010. The points total is also the most in a half by a Crimson Tide team since scoring 52 in the first half against Vanderbilt in 1990 when Alabama held a 52-7 lead at halftime.

Under Saban, the Crimson Tide is 91-6 (.938) when leading at the half. Alabama has led at the half in eight of its 11 games this year, trailing Ole Miss and Arkansas, and tied at 7-7 versus Tennessee at the midway point.

The four wins in the Saban era when trailing at the half: 34-24 over No. 7 Virginia Tech in 2009 (in Atlanta); a 24-15 over No. 9 LSU in 2009; 24-20 at Arkansas in 2010; 27-14 vs. Arkansas in 2015. His Tide teams are 4-3 when tied at halftime, and Alabama’s four wins under Saban when tied at halftime: at LSU in 2008, (27-21), at Auburn in 2009 (26-21), against Tennessee in 2011 (37-6) and against Tennessee this season (19-14).

Derrick Henry’s 17-yard touchdown run on the Crimson Tide’s first drive against Charleston Southern moved his consecutive games with a touchdown streak to 16. The 16-game streak is the longest active streak in the nation, and the longest by an SEC player in the past 20 years. The streak is also the longest in Alabama history, with the previous high being 10 by Terry Davis across the 1971 and 1972 seasons from Nov. 6, 1971-Oct. 21, 1972. The last time Henry failed to notch a score was in the LSU game on Nov. 8, 2014.

Henry’s two rushing scores against Charleston Southern moved him into a tie for the most rushing touchdowns in a single season in Alabama history with 21. Henry matches Trent Richardson for the Crimson Tide record, with Richardson accomplishing the feat in 2011.

With his two scores in the first quarter against Charleston Southern, Derrick Henry has collected 35 rushing touchdowns for his career. The 35 scores matches Trent Richardson for fourth in Alabama history. Next on the list is T.J. Yeldon with 37 from 2012-14. In front of Yeldon is Shaun Alexander (1996-99) with 41 and the all-time leader, Mark Ingram (2008-10), with 42.

Henry’s 68 yards in the first quarter against Charleston Southern pushed him past the 1,500 yards for the season. He now has 1,526 rushing yards. He is only the third Alabama back to accomplish the feat. The other two over 1,500 yards rushing were Mark Ingram in 2009 (1,658) and Trent Richardson in 2011 (1,679).

Henry earned the starting nod at tailback in the 2015 season opener and has filled that role in every game since. With 68 yards while playing only the first quarter against Charleston Southern, in 13 games as a starter he has rushed for 1,728 yards on 274 carries (6.3 yards per carry) with 23 touchdowns. Prior to 2015, Henry started only twice - vs. Western Carolina and Ohio State in 2014. He has collected at least one rushing touchdown in each start, and has had double-digit scoring eight times. He also has 13 pass receptions for 160 yards and one touchdown.

Freshman wide receiver Calvin Ridley has five touchdown catches, four of which have gone for 30 yards or more, including a 30-yard catch and score from Jake Coker against Charleston Southern. His second career TD was a 45-yard strike against Georgia, and he followed that with an 81-yard reception against Arkansas. His touchdown score at Mississippi State came on a screen that the freshman took for 60 yards. His other touchdown catch this season was a 15-yard reception against Louisiana-Monroe, the first receiving score of his career.

Over the past six games, senior quarterback Jake Coker has completed 73 per cent (119-for-163) of his passes for 1,320 yards and six touchdowns.

With Henry’s touchdown on the first drive of the game, the Tide has scored in the first half of its last 114 games, the longest streak in the nation. The last time UA failed to score in the first half was on Sept. 29, 2007, when Alabama and Florida State headed into halftime in a scoreless tie. The Seminoles won that game, 21-14. Alabama has a 98-16 record during the streak.

Alabama has now scored in 194 consecutive games, the longest streak in program history.

Alabama is 76-4 since the start of the 2008 season when rushing for at least 140 yards. The only losses were at Auburn in 2013, Ole Miss and Ohio State in 2014, and Ole Miss in 2015.

Cyrus Jones’s 43-yard and 70-yard punt returns for touchdowns against Charleston Southern were the second and third of his career, all three coming in the past two games. It was Alabama’s first set of punt returns for a touchdown in consecutive weeks by the same player in Crimson Tide history (in records dating back to 1944). The closest to previously accomplishing that feat was David Palmer in 1991, when he took one 56 yards against Vanderbilt on Sept. 28 and then two games later took a second one back for 69 yards against Tulane on Oct. 12. Jones’s two punt return touchdowns also marked the first pair of punt return TDs by the same player in a single game in Alabama history (again, in records dating back to 1944).

Jones’s touchdown returns are the 43rd and 44th non-offensive touchdowns of the Saban era. On Nov. 14, Jones returned a punt 69 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter at Mississippi State, the 42nd non-offense touchdown of the Nick Saban era.

The Tide has recorded eight non-offensive touchdowns in 2015. Bama took a school-record three interceptions back for touchdowns against Texas A&M on Oct. 17 -- a 33-yard return by Minkah Fitzpatrick, a return of 93 yards by Eddie Jackson, and a 55-yard return by Fitzpatrick. It was the first time since 2013 that Alabama had three non-offensive touchdowns in a game. Prior to the weekend in College Station, UA returned both a blocked punt and an interception for touchdowns against Georgia.

Since Saban took over in 2007, Alabama has 16 interception returns, 12 punt returns, five kickoff returns, four fumble returns, and four blocked punt returns for touchdowns. Alabama scored one non-offensive touchdown in 2014. The Tide scored seven non-offensive touchdowns in 2013, including three in the season opener against Virginia Tech, marking the first time the Crimson Tide had done so in a game since Sept. 30, 1995, against Georgia.

In the seven games since losing the turnover battle 5-0 and falling to Ole Miss by six points, Alabama has turned the tide in turnovers. Since the matchup with the Rebels, the Tide is plus 8 in turnovers, having forced 17 (13 interceptions, 4 fumbles) in those seven games. Alabama has forced 22 turnovers this season.

Alabama held Charleston Southern to six points on Saturday in the 56-6 win. Under Saban since the start of the 2007 season, the Tide has held opponents to 10 points or fewer 56 times. The Charleston Southern game is the fifth time this season that Alabama has held an opponent to 10 points or less.

Last year, Bama shut out two opponents. Alabama held 9-of-13 opponents to 10 points or less in 2013 with three shutouts. Seven opponents were limited to 10 points or less in 2012, four of which were shutouts. UA was successful in holding opponents in the 0-10 point range in nine games in 2011 and eight times in 2010. The Tide kept opponents within that range seven times in both 2008 and 2009, and in 2007 posted two games in which it held opponents to 0-10 points. Alabama has shut out the opposition 16 times under Saban.

Since the start of the 2009 season, no defense has allowed fewer touchdowns than the Crimson Tide. Alabama’s defense, led by coordinator Kirby Smart and Saban, has surrendered 135 touchdowns over the last 91 games. That is 41 fewer than the second most in the nation (Florida with 176).  

Alabama limited Charleston Southern to 134 yards of total offense, the seventh time the Tide has kept a team under 300 in 2015. UA held LSU to 182, Arkansas to 220 yards, Georgia to 299 yards, ULM to 92 yards, and Middle Tennessee to 275 yards, and Wisconsin to 268. In Saban’s 119-game tenure at Alabama, the Crimson Tide has limited opponents to under 300 yards of total offense 73 times, or 61.3 per cent of the time. UA held six of its 14 opponents below 300 yards in 2014.

During Saban’s last 106 games at the Capstone (since the start of the 2008 season), the Crimson Tide defense has held the opposing offense to fewer than 200 yards of total offense 35 times, including three times this year (Charleston Southern – 134, LSU – 182 yards, ULM – 92).

Honorary captains were former Tide safety Tony Dixon and former Bama defensive end Kindal Moorehead.

Captains were serniors, represented by Jarran Reed, Cyrus Jones, Jacob Coker, and Dillon Lee.

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