Alabama notebook, Week III

Dennis Franchione notched his first win as head coach of the Crimson Tide with a 12-9 win at Vanderbilt. The win at Vandy also snapped a six-game losing streak by the Crimson Tide. Prior to the win at Vanderbilt, the Crimson Tide's last win was a 45-7 rout of Ole Miss on Oct. 14, 2000.

  • The win at Vanderbilt broke a five-game road losing streak. The Crimson Tide did not win a road game in 2000 and its last win prior to the win at Vandy was a 28-17 win at Auburn on Nov. 20, 1999.
  • With the Vanderbilt victory, the Tide is 9-9 (.500) in its last 18 road games dating back to 1997. The Crimson Tide posted a 2-2 road record in both 1997 and 1998. Alabama was a perfect 4-0 away from home in 1999, but lost all five road games last year.
  • Alabama has now won 10 straight SEC openers, all against Vanderbilt, dating back to the 1991 season.
  • The Crimson Tide's 12-9 win over Vanderbilt marked the team's first win without scoring a touchdown since the 1990 season. Philip Doyle kicked three field goals, including the 47-yard game-winner as time expired, to beat Tennessee 9-6 on Oct. 20, 1990 in Knoxville.
  • Alabama has scored just one touchdown in its last three SEC games, dating back to last season. The Tide scored its lone TD in the win at Miss. State and did not score a TD against Auburn (2000) or Vanderbilt (2001).
  • Alabama does not have a rushing touchdown this season and has not scored a rushing touchdown in its last 16 quarters, dating back to last season. The last rushing touchdown for the Crimson Tide was scored by Dustin McClintock with 12:43 left in the fourth quarter of last year's 30-28 loss at LSU.
  • When Vanderbilt was penalized for illegal procedure with 11:34 remaining in the first quarter, it marked the first time an Alabama opponent was penalized this season. Vandy finished the game with six penalties for 33 yards. In the 2001 season opener, UCLA was not penalized.
  • With 8:23 remaining in the second quarter against Vandy, Nautyn McKay-Loescher got the Tide's first defensive turnover of the season when he recovered a fumble. The turnover resulted in a 26-yard field goal by Neal Thomas.
  • The Vanderbilt game marked the first career start for former walk-on Waine Bacon of Ft. Washington, Maryland (Bishop McNamara). A junior, Bacon was awarded a scholarship this fall. Bacon played 66 snaps on defense in his first start and was named Alabama's "Defensive Back of the Week" by the coaching staff. He has four tackles in each of the first two games.
  • Junior cornerback Hirchel Bolden matched his career high with six tackles in last week's win over Vanderbilt. Bolden also had six tackles against Louisiana Tech in 1999.
  • Junior Antonio Carter's 50-yard kickoff return in the fourth quarter against Vanderbilt was the first kickoff return of his career.
  • In two games this season, Carter has nine receptions for 134 yards and one touchdown. He is averaging 14.9 yards per reception and 67 yards per game. He had three catches for 104 yards, including a 78-yard TD reception, in the season opener against UCLA.
  • Carter has 83 career receptions for 1,000 career yards and five TDs. He is ninth on the all-time list in total receptions behind Dennis Homan's (1965-67) eighth place total of 87 career receptions. Carter had three catches for 30 yards last week at Vandy, including a 23-yarder early in the fourth quarter to give him exactly 1,000 career receiving yards.
  • Senior nose tackle David Daniel had a career high three tackles in Saturday's win over Vanderbilt. His previous best was two tackles in last year's loss to Southern Miss.
  • Sophomore rover Brooks Daniels played his best game at Alabama, recording a career high 12 tackles against Vandy. Daniels previous best was six tackles in the 2001 season opener against UCLA. In two games this year, Daniels is Bama's leading tackler with 18 total stops.
  • Sophomore cornerback Corey Ferguson has recorded a career high two tackles in each of his first two games this year against UCLA and Vandy.
  • The Tide's Ahmaad Galloway ran the ball 24 times for 144 yards in the win over Vandy. The 24 carries are a career high for the Millington, Tenn., native. His previous best was 21 rushing attempts at LSU (2000) and against UCLA (2001). His 144-yard rushing performance was Galloway's third career 100-yard game. In fact, Galloway has the Tide's last three 100-yard rushing games. His first 100-yard game came last season against Vanderbilt (13-172-1) at Legion Field and his second came at LSU (21-119-1) last season.
  • Galloway is fourth in the SEC, averaging 110 rushing yards per game.
  • In 25 career games, Galloway has 189 rushing attempts for 912 yards and seven TDs. He enters the Southern Miss game just 88 yards shy of the 1,000-yard mark for his career.
  • Redshirt freshman tailback Ray Hudson appears to have moved up to second-string on the UA depth chart after an impressive performance at Vanderbilt. Hudson finished the game with 11 carries for 69 yards, including a 35-yard run.
  • Junior nose tackle Kenny King needs two tackles for 100 total tackles in his career. In 22 career games, King has 98 tackles for the Crimson Tide.
  • Sophomore cornerback Roberto McBride had two tackles and one PBU, both career highs, in last week's win over Vanderbilt.
  • Sophomore defensive end Nautyn McKay-Loescher had his best game last week against Vandy, recording a career high four tackles and one TFL. McKay-Loescher also recovered his first career fumble to set up a Neal Thomas field goal.
  • Senior Freddie Milons equalled his career high with three kickoff returns last week. He also had three KO returns against Miss. State in 1998 and UCLA in the 2001 season opener.
  • Milons ranks second in the SEC and 13th nationally with 171.0 all-purpose yards per game. Milons had a career high 246 all-purpose yards in the season opener with UCLA. In two games, Milons has 364 all-purpose yards (4 rushing, 132 receiving, 23 punt returns and 183 KO returns).
  • Defensive end Kindal Moorehead was voted "Defensive Lineman of the Week" by the Alabama coaches after his monster game against Vanderbilt. The junior recorded a career-high eight tackles, two TFLs (-9) and four quarterback pressures.
  • Junior middle linebacker Saleem Rasheed has 180 total tackles in his career at Alabama. Rasheed notched his 100th career solo tackle last weekend against Vanderbilt.
  • In the Tide's two-tight end set against Vandy, Theo Sanders, a junior from Birmingham's Shades Valley High School, earned his first career start. In the fourth quarter, Sanders hauled in his first career reception, a 26-yard catch from Tyler Watts.
  • Neal Thomas accounted for all 12 points in the Crimson Tide's 12-9 win over Vanderbilt. The senior kicker made four of five field goal attempts, including the game-winner with 5:01 left in the game. The four field goals and five attempts are both career highs. Thomas' previous best was a 3-for-3 effort in last year's 45-7 win over Ole Miss.
  • Thomas is first in the SEC and sixth nationally, averaging 2.5 field goals per game this season. Thomas has converted five of six field goals this season, scoring 17 points in two games. Thomas also had his first career punt with 6:50 left in the third quarter. It was a 28-yarder to pen Vanderbilt at their own 8-yard line.

IN THE "RED ZONE"

Alabama has been in the opponent's "red zone" 6 times in 2001, getting 12 points on four field goals. The other opportunities were lost on downs and a field goal that hit the upright. Tide opponents have been in the zone 6 times, scoring points 4 times. Those came on 3 field goals and one rushing touchdown.

QB TYLER WATTS

Junior quarterback Tyler Watts has now started two consecutive games this season and ranks 50th in the NCAA and 7th in SEC total offense stats. His numbers show 85 yards rushing, 332 yards passing on 65 total plays for 417 yards. He is averaging 208.5 yards per game. Watts played hard-nosed football in the season opener against UCLA, running the ball 18 times for 69 yards, both career highs. He also completed 12 of 22 passes for 204 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Watts' touchdown pass was a 78-yard strike to a wide-open Antonio Carter with 6:06 left in the first quarter, giving the Tide a 7-0 lead. His lone interception was not his fault as it was tipped by two different Alabama players before finding its way into the hands of a UCLA defender. Then against Vandebilt, he threw for 128 yards on 10-of-17 passing and rushed for another 16 yards on 8 carries.
  • Watts' 18 carries and 69 rushing yards against UCLA are both career highs for the junior. Watts had 14 carries for 69 yards in last year's 28-21 loss at Arkansas.
  • Watts' 204 passing yards eclipsed his previous career high of 203 yards (LSU, 1999) by one yard. Ø Watts now has 1,133 career passing yards. He has hit 107 of 171 attempts for 1,133 yards, 7 interceptions and 4 touchdowns in 17 career games. His career passing percentage is .626.s for 1,005 yards and four TDs.
  • Watts' 78-yard TD pass to Carter is the ninth longest scoring pass play in Alabama history. It was also a career-best for Watts.

WATTS ON THE RUN

Starting quarterback Tyler Watts ran the ball 18 times for 69 yards in the loss to UCLA. The 18 career rushes established a career high for the junior, while the 69 yards matched his career best set at Arkansas last year. It has been nearly 20 years since an Alabama quarterback has gone over the century mark on the ground. The last to accomplish that feat was Walter Lewis (156 yards) against Cincinnati on Oct. 23, 1982. In 17 career games, Watts has 89 rushing attempts for 293 yards and one TD.

SINCE THE "BEAR"

Between 1958 and 1982, coach Paul "Bear" Bryant won 232 games, lost 46 and tied 9 while coaching at Alabama. Also during that 25-year span, he won six national championships, 13 SEC titles and went to 24 consecutive bowl games. Since Bryant's retirement, Alabama has had five coaches, including current coach Dennis Franchione and they have posted a 153-65-2 record, won a single national title, three SEC championships and been to 15 bowl games in 18 seasons.

TOUGH SCHEDULE

The 2001 Alabama football schedule has been ranked among the toughest in the nation by a number of publications. The Sporting News ranks the Crimson Tide's schedule as the fourth-toughest in the nation based on the opponents winning percentage from the 2000 season. Last year, Alabama opponents compiled a 79-53 (.598) overall record and a 47-40 (.540) conference mark. Of the 11 opponents on the 2001 schedule, 10 teams appeared in bowl games last year. Below is a list of The Sporting News' toughest schedules for the 2001 season and a look at Bama's opponents.
  1. USC (.641)
  2. Pittsburgh (.619)
  3. Miami, Fla. (.610)
  4. ALABAMA (.598)
  5. Florida State (.570)
  6. Michigan (.568)
  7. Nebraska (.565)
  8. Purdue (.564)
  9. Virginia Tech (.557)
  10. Florida (.554)
  11. LSU (.543)
  12. South Carolina (.535)
  13. Miss. State (.529)
  14. Tennessee (.523)

*Alabama will play 10 bowl teams during the 2001 season, more than any other team in the nation. Arkansas ranks second with eight bowl teams. There are 7 teams with seven bowl teams on their 2001 schedule.

A LOOK AT FREDDIE MILONS

Senior Freddie Milons opened the 2001 season by turning in 246 all-purpose yards against UCLA. He had one rush for 4 yards; 4 receptions for 124 yards and one TD; 11 punt returns for 107 yards to total 246 all-purpose yards. The Starkville, Miss., native scored on a 71-yard pass from Andrew Zow with 2:13 left in the game. The next week against Vanderbilt, Milons had one reception for 8 yards, one punt return for 12 yards and 3 kickoff returns for 76 yards for 96 all-purpose yards. He is currently 2nd in the SEC in all-purpose yardage, averaging 171.0 yards per game.

MILONS HAS BEST NIGHT AGAINST UCLA

Senior flanker Freddie Milons enjoyed the finest statistical game of his career in the 2001 season opener against UCLA. The Starkville, Miss., native accounted for 246 all-purpose yards in the loss to UCLA, which included a career-long 71-yard TD reception from Andrew Zow in the fourth quarter. His previous best was in the 2000 season opener at UCLA, where he totalled 189 yards, including a 77-yard punt return for a touchdown. Milons had only 603 all-purpose yards last year in 11 games. After the 2000 UCLA game, Milons managed only 414 all-purpose yards the remainder of the season, an average of 41.4 per game. The 246 yards against UCLA last Saturday is 40.7 percent of his total all-purpose yards for the entire 2000 season.

MILONS' TOP ALL-PURPOSE YARD GAMES

  1. 246 UCLA (2001)
  2. 189 UCLA (2000
  3. 179 Michigan (2000, OB)
  4. 177 Miss. State (1999)
  5. 168 USM (1999)
  6. 153 at Florida (1999)
  • Milons had four catches against UCLA for 124 yards and one TD. As a junior (2000), Milons had only 287 receiving yards and one TD all year. The 124-yard effort against UCLA in the 2001 season opener is 43.2 percent of total in 11 games last year.
  • Milons holds the Alabama single- season record with 65 receptions (733 yards) set during the 1999 season.
  • Milons is the only player in Alabama history to record three straight 100-yard receiving games. He turned the trick against Arkansas (109), Florida (119) and Ole Miss (133) during the 1999 season.
  • Milons needs 12 receptions to break David Bailey's (1969-71) career record for pass receptions. Bailey caught 132 career passes at Alabama.
  • Milons has had nine or more receptions four times in his UA career. He caught a career high 10 passes for 119 yards in Bama's 40-39 overtime win at Florida in 1999. Milons also added nine receptions against South Carolina (2000), Ole Miss (1999) and Miss. State (1999).
  • Milons tallied 179 all-purpose yards in Alabama's 2000 Orange Bowl loss to Michigan, which included a 62-yard punt return.
  • In the 1999 SEC Championship game, Milons accounted for 116 rushing yards and one TD and was named "Most Valuable Player" after leading Alabama to a 34-7 win over Florida.

MILONS-CARTER TIE MILESTONE FOR RECEIVERS

Against UCLA, Freddie Milons (4-124-1) and Antonio Carter (6-104-1) became the thirdset of receivers in school history to record 100 receiving yards in the same game. The last duo to accomplish that feat was Freddie Milons and Jason McAddley against Arkansas i 1999. The other duo with 100 receiving yard games was David Bailey (9-187-1) and Bubba Sawyer (6-110) against Auburn on Nov. 29, 1969. Milons went over the 100-yard mark with a 71-yard TD reception in the fourth quarter. Carter aided his cause with a 78-yard TD catch in the first quarter. In the 32 years between those feats there have been a couple of close calls on the multiple 100-yard receiving game, including Milons and Carter at Florida during the 1999 season.

ANDREW ZOW

Alabama's senior quarterback Andrew Zow played just three snaps against UCLA in the season opener, but made the most of his short appearance. He was a perfect 3-for-3 passing for 95 yards and one TD. Alabama's career leader in pass attempts (772) and completions (414), he now has 5,424 career passing yards. He also has 30 career TDs to tie him with Freddie Kitchens and Jeff Rutledge. That trio is five short of career-leader Mike Shula's 35. Zow's best game as a Crimson Tide player came at Florida in 1999, when he completed 28 of 40 (.700) passes in the 40-39 overtime win. His best passing day was a 361-yard performance against Southern Miss in 1998.
  • Zow also holds the Alabama record for consecutive completions with 12 straight completions in last year's 45-7 win over Ole Miss. In addition, Zow completed 18 of his 22 pass attempts (.818), the second-highest completion percentage in school history with a minimum of 15 completions.
  • Zow has 911 career plays (772 pass attempts and 139 rushing attempts), which leaves him 38 plays behind Jay Barker (1991-94). Barker logged 949 career plays to become the school's all-time leader.
  • Zow also has 4,330 yards of total offense to rank third on the all-time list at Alabama. He trails Walter Lewis' (1980-83) school-record total of 5,680 yards by only 1,350 yards. Jay Barker (1991-94) is second on the all-time list with 5,409 total yards.
  • Zow is just 265 yards shy of tying Barker's career record for most passing yards. Barker threw for 5,689 yards during his playing career (1991-94) at Alabama. Barker became the school's all-time passing leader in the Crimson Tide's 1994 win at LSU, surpassing Scott Hunter's (1968-70) career mark of 4,889 yards.

REGGIE MYLES

Senior cornerback Reggie Myles is closing in on the all-time Alabama record for interception return yards. Myles has eight career interceptions for 199 yards and two TDs in his three-year career with the Tide. He needs just 57 return yards to surpass Bobby Luna's 255 career yards.

MOOREHEAD AMONG LOMBARDI CANDIDATES

Junior defensive end Kindal Moorehead was named to the 2001 preseason Rotary Lombardi Award watch list. The Memphis, Tenn., native made the preseason list of the top 81 linemen and linebackers in the country. In addition, Moorehead is one of 13 Southeastern Conference defenders to make the initial list.
  • Moorehead was tabbed a second-team 2001 preseason All-SEC pick by The Birmingham News.
  • Moorehead has appeared in 24 games for the Crimson Tide and recorded 70 tackles, including 46 solo stops. He also has 24 tackles for loss (-124), 10 1/2 quarterback sacks (-104), four fumbles caused, one fumble recovery and two pass deflections.
  • Moorehead missed the entire 2000 season after suffering a torn achilles in the final preseason scrimmage.
  • As a sophomore, Moorehead enjoyed his best season with the Crimson Tide, contributing 39 tackles, 13 TFLs (-74) and 5 1/2 sacks (-67) en route to first-team All-SEC honors by The Birmingham News.
  • He earned freshman All-SEC honors in 1998, contributing 31 total tackles in his rookie season.

RASHEED NAMED TO BUTKUS WATCH LIST

The Downtown Athletic Club of Orlando, Inc. (DACO), the organization which annually presents the prestigious Butkus Award to the nation's best collegiate linebacker, has named Alabama's junior linebacker Saleem Rasheed to its preseason watch list. The 10 semi-finalists will be announced Thursday, Oct. 18 and the winner will be announced Friday, Dec. 7. Ø Rasheed is one of 14 collegiate linebackers named to the preseason watch list for the second consecutive year, joining Andra Davis (Florida), Ben Leber (Kansas State), Boss Bailey (Georgia), Bradie James (LSU), Eddie Strong (Ole Miss), Eric Brackens (Michigan), Justin Smith (Indiana), Larry Foote (Michigan), Max Yates (Marshall), Pernell Griffin (East Carolina) Rocky Calmus (Oklahoma) and Trev Faulk (LSU).
  • Rasheed has appeared in 23 games for the Crimson Tide and has recorded 165 total tackles, including 90 solo stops. In addition, Rasheed has added 11 TFLs (-41), three QB sacks (-20), two pass deflections, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and one blocked punt.
  • Preseason first-team All-SEC selection by The Birmingham News.
  • In the weight room, he set four linebacker records this spring in the hang and clean (365), bench press (475), incline press (410) and vertical jump (37.5).
  • En route to being named second-team All-SEC last year (SEC Coaches), Rasheed recorded 81 tackles, four TFLs (-15) and eight quarterback pressures.
  • Rasheed was named Freshman All-SEC and Freshman Defensive Player of the Year in 1999 by the Knoxville News Sentinel, leading the team with 81 tackles.
  • Rasheed is the only freshman in school history to lead the Crimson Tide in tackles.

GAME CAPTAINS

Captains for the Arkansas game will be Saleem Rasheed and Victor Ellis on defense and Jonathan Richey and Terry Jones, Jr., on offense.

PLAYERS OF THE WEEK

Each week the Alabama coaching staff selects players of the week from offense, defense, scout team and special teams. The winners are listed below. UCLA -- Tyler Watts (offense), Jarret Johnson (defense), Shaud Williams (scout team offense), Ty Tyrus and Carl McInnish (scout team defense) and Saleem Rasheed (special teams). Vanderbilt -- Alonzo Ephraim (offensive lineman of the week); Ahmaad Galloway (offensive back of the week); Allen Burgess and Joel Babb (scout team offense); Kindal Moorehead (defensive lineman of the week); Waine Bacon (defensive back of the week); Allen Hollie and Ty Tyrus (scout team defense) and Neal Thomas and Salem Rasheed (special teams).

SEPTEMBER RECORD

Alabama has compiled a 135-35-5 (.784) all-time record on the month of September. The Crimson Tide's first-ever September game was a 24-0 win over Howard on Sept. 30, 1911. The Crimson Tide's two most lopsided wins in history have come in September. Alabama posted a 110-0 win over Marion Institute on Sept. 30, 1922 and scored an 89-0 win over Delta State on Sept. 21, 1951. The Crimson Tide's first-ever loss in the month of of September was a 21-20 setback to Tulane on Sept. 27, 1947. Another historical date was the first-ever game in Denny Stadium as the Tide beat Mississippi College 55-0 on Sept. 28, 1929.

YOUTH MOVEMENT

Of the five lineman who have started the first two games of the 2001 season, there are only a combined 36 career starts. Strong tackle Dante Ellington (6-6, 343, So.) had started 26 games, while strong guard Marico Portis (6-3, 302, Jr.) started 4 games, with two of those coming in 1999. Justin Smiley (QG, 6-3, 295, Fr.), Wesley Britt (QT, 6-8, 313, Fr.) and Alonzo Ephriam (C, 6-4, 292, Jr.) all made their first career starts against UCLA. The last time three freshmen offensive lineman (Paul Hogan, Griff Redmill, Will Cuthbert) started was against Arkansas in 1997.

KICKER NEAL THOMAS

Senior placekicker Neal Thomas is on the watch list for the 2001 Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award. Thomas, who led the Tide in scoring last year with 54 points, kicked three, 50 yard field goals. He joined Van Tiffin as the only Tide players to kick three or more 50-yard field goals in one season. Tiffin kicked four in 1985. Last season he was a perfect 27-of-27 PATs and connected on 9-of-13 field goals. He was responsible for all 12 of the Tide's points in the 12-9 win over Vanderbilt.

WALK-ONS AWARDED SCHOLARSHIPS

Four walk-on players were recently awarded scholarships by coach Dennis Franchione. Those included junior safety Waine Bacon of Forestville, Md.; sophomore cornerback Corey Ferguson of Montgomery; senior wide receiver Michael James of Tuscaloosa and senior quarterback Jonathan Richey of Geraldine.

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