Players Of The Week Against Arkansas
On Monday after the 41-38 Alabama win over Arkansas, Crimson Tide Coach Nick Saban said, "We did have some Players of the Game in this game.
"D.J. Hall on offense, breaking the receiver record here; Matt Caddell with nine catches. I thought our receivers played their best game of the season as a group and these two guys especially made a significant number of plays."
Despite being limited by an injury in the second half, Hall, a senior from Fort Walton Beach, Fla., had six receptions for 172 yards and two touchdowns. He came into the game needing just 38 yards to break the record of Hall of Fame receiver Ozzie Newsome for most career receiving yards at Alabama. He broke the record on the first play of the game, taking a 43-yard pass from John Parker Wilson.
Hall now has 2,209 receiving yards in his career. Newsome had 2,070 yards in his brilliant Crimson Tide career (1974-77).
Hall has 140 career catches and 13 touchdowns. He has had 11 games in which he caught passes for more than 100 yards. He has caught at least one pass in 21 consecutive games dating back to October 15, 2005, against Ole Miss.
His 172 receiving yards against Arkansas was his career high and ranks fourth on the Alabama single-game receiving yards list. Hall's previous single game high was 157 yards on 11 catches against Utah State in 2005.
Hall has had success against Arkansas. In four games he has 16 catches for 378 yards and five touchdowns. He has averaged 23.6 yards per catch and 94.5 yards per game in his career against the Razorbacks.
Caddell is a senior from McCalla. Following the game, Saban noted that Caddell had not had many opportunities in his previous three seasons of play, but said that Caddell had performed well in practice.
Against the Razorbacks, Caddell had nine receptions for 91 yards. In Bama's final drive for victory in the final 2:13, Caddell had receptions on the first three plays – for 19 yards on first down and nine yards each on the next two. Six plays later, on third-and-one at the Arkansas four-yard line, Caddell made an acrobatic catch of Wilson's pass into the end zone for the decisive score. Eight seconds remained in the game.
Saban said, "Defensively, Keith Saunders and Darren Mustin, even though Mustin only played half the game, the half the game that he played was outstanding. He really played well. And even though he may not have had the production points of some guys that played the whole game, for what he did in his part of the game, I think it was an outstanding performance.
Saunders, who plays the Jack linebacker position that often as not is a defensive end spot, led Alabama with six solo tackles and four assists.
Mustin went out with a neck injury before halftime, but in his limited time was in on five tackles (four solo), including one for a loss of two yards. And when defensive end Wallace Gilberry tipped a pass, Mustin pulled it in at the Arkansas 15 and returned it to inside the 10-yard line, setting up Bama's first touchdown.
Saban said, "Ty King did a great job on special teams and Leigh Tiffin did a much better job kicking off. Made a big field goal, came back in the game after being injured. So we were really pleased with those two guys on special teams."
Tyrone King caused a fumble and recovered a fumble on a kickoff. Tiffin made two-of-three field goals, including a clutch 42-yard field goal with 4:20 to play that cut the Arkansas' lead to 38-34.
Saban noted, "Terry Grant was the SEC Freshman of the Week again and D.J. (Hall) being Honorable Mention as Offensive Player (of the Week) is great for our players to get that kind of recognition and self-gratification."
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