Notes From Tide Romp Over Auburn
Alabama will also be attempting to add to its record of 21 SEC Championships when the Tide meets Florida in the SEC Championship Game at the GeorgiaDome in Atlanta next Saturday. Kickoff will be at 4 p.m. EST (3 p.m. central) with national television coverage by CBS.
Alabama is the only SEC team to have won a football championship in every decade since the conference was founded in 1933, but Bama does not yet have a title in this decade.
If Alabama can win in Atlanta, the Crimson Tide will head to Miami for the BCS Championship Game on January 8. Bama has 12 national championships, none since 1992.
Alabama and Florida have met in five previous SEC Championship Games since that event began in 1992. Alabama won the first game and won the last time the teams met, a 34-7 romp in 1999. Alabama has not played in an SEC title game against any team other than Florida.
While the winner of the SEC Championship Game will go to Miami to play for the national championship, the loser will go to the Sugar Bowl on january 1.
NFL scouts on hand for the game were from the Washington Redskins and New York Giants. Bowl representatives came from the Orange, Sugar, Capital One, Chick-fil-A, PapaJohns.com, Independence and Liberty.
Much had been made of Auburn's winning streaks over Alabama prior to Saturday. The Tigers had won six in a row and Auburn had never lost in Tuscaloosa, four wins over Bama in Bryant-Denny Stadium in recent years and two in the early days of Alabama-Auburn football. The six-game win streak was Auburn's longest in the series. Alabama had a nine-game winning streak over Auburn, 1973-81.
Alabama increased its margin in the all-time series to 39-33-1.
Alabama's 36-0 victory over Auburn represents the largest Alabama victory margin in the series since a 38-0 win in 1962. The Crimson Tide's 36 points scored is the most against Auburn since 1977 when the Tide scored 48 in a 48-21 win. Alabama has shutout Auburn 14 times in series history, with the last coming in 1992 when Alabama beat Auburn 17-0 on Thanksgiving Day to close out the 1992 season. Alabama has scored 30 or more points in six of its previous 14 shutouts in the series. The 36-0 shutout win is the second largest shutout win by Alabama in series history. The Tide beat Auburn 38-0 in 1962 for the largest shutout win.
Alabama never trailed against Auburn. The Crimson Tide has trailed for a total of 23:11 over the last 13 games dating back to a loss at Auburn in 2007. The Crimson Tide have been tied or led in just under 756 of the last 780 minutes of football. Alabama scored first in 12 of those 13 games (Mississippi) and led for the entire game in 11 of 13 (Mississippi and LSU).
With the win over Auburn, the Crimson Tide has a 13-game winning streak, the longest by an Alabama team since also winning 28 straight from 1991-93, the longest win streak in Alabama history. The Tide's current 13-game winning streak began with a 30-24 win over Colorado last season in the Independence Bowl. The current streak marks the 21st winning streak of 10 or more games in school history, an NCAA record.
Alabama has reeled off 13 consecutive wins dating back to last year's win over Colorado in the Independence Bowl. The Crimson Tide's winning streak is tied for the longest in the nation with Utah's 13-game streak.
The victory over Auburn improved Alabama to 8-0 in Southeastern Conference games this season, marking the first time since 1994 that the Crimson Tides has completed conference play with an 8-0 record. That year, Alabama completed the regular season with an 8-0 SEC mark before falling to Florida in the SEC Championship Game.
The Crimson Tide's 12 regular season wins ties an Alabama record for most victories in the regular season, matching the 12 wins by Alabama in the 1992 season that culminated with a 13-0 record and a national championship. The 2008 squad is the seventh Alabama team to win at least 11 regular season games and the first since 1994. The other UA teams to win at least 11 regular season games are 1971 (11-0), 1973 (11-0), 1974 (11-0), 1979 (11-0), 1992 (11-0) and 1994 (11-0). A total of 12 Alabama teams have won 10 regular season games, most recently in 2002 (10-3).
Alabama head coach Nick Saban has guided the Crimson Tide to a No. 1 national ranking and 12-0 record this season. That is an improvement of five wins over last year's 7-6 record. With the win over Auburn, Saban broke the school record for largest increase in wins from year one to year two. The record was previously held by W.B. Blount (1903-04) and Gene Stallings (1990-91), who won four more games in their second year with the Crimson Tide than in year one. Blount went from three wins in 1903 to seven wins in 1904, while Stallings saw an increase from seven wins in 1990 to 11 wins in 1991.
Saban has compiled a 19-6 (.760) record in his career with the Crimson Tide and the 19 wins rank in a tie for the fourth-most for any Crimson Tide head football coach after 25 games. Gene Stallings and J.W.H. Pollard also posted 19 wins through their first 25 games with the Crimson Tide. Xen Scott holds the record for most wins after 25 games, with 22 victories. Wallace Wade ranks second with 21 wins through 25 games
Leigh Tiffin's 37-yard field goal in the first quarter was his 17th made field goal of the season (in 24 attempts) and the 50th made field goal of Tiffin's Alabama career. His 17 field goals this season ranks tied for 7th on the Alabama single-season field goals made list, matching Leigh's father, Van Tiffin, who kicked 17 in 1985. Leigh holds the single-season record with 25 set last year. Leigh Tiffin's 50 career field goals ranks him fourth in Alabama history behind Philip Doyle (78 from 1987-90), Michael Proctor (65 from 1992-95), and Van Tiffin (59 from 1983-86).
Freshman running back Mark Ingram rushed for two touchdowns against Auburn, extending the Alabama lead to 22-0 with 7:35 left in the third quarter and adding a 14-yard scoring run for a 29-0 Tide lead with 2:10 left in the third quarter. Those scores give Ingram 11 rushing touchdowns this season, extending Ingram's Alabama record for touchdown runs by a freshman, eclipsing Terry Grant's eight rushing touchdowns in 2007.
A pair of Alabama seniors saw action in their 50th all-time game when the Crimson Tide hosted Auburn. Senior tight ends Travis McCall and Nick Walker both played their 50th game for the Crimson Tide and became the 13th and 14th players in school history to see action in 50 games. Former fullback Tarrant Lynch (1990-94) holds the Alabama record with 52 career games, which included a fifth year of eligibility due to a medical hardship. Former offensive lineman Matt Hammond (1990-93) and linebacker Lemanski Hall (1990-93) are second on the list with 51 games played.
Joining senior center Antoine Caldwell and senior safety Rashad Johnson as captain was tight end Nick Walker. Former Tide running back Siran Stacy was honorary captain.
Country music star Sara Evans, wife of former Alabama quarterback Jay Barker, sang the national anthem.
Each week the Alabama radio broadcast team has included a former player as a special guest analyst. On Saturday the guest was former Crimson Tide quarterback Steadman Shealy, who directed Bama to a 25-18 win over Auburn in 1979. Shealy scored the winning touchdown in that game, then led the Number One ranked Crimson Tide to a win over Arkansas in the Sugar Bowl and the national championship.
Alabama Coach Nick Saban greeted each player and his family individually in a ceremony prior to kickoff. The seniors honored are Antoine Caldwell, Marlon Davis, Bobby Greenwood, Rashad Johnson, Travis McCall, Will Oakley, Nikita Stover, Nick Walker, and John Parker Wilson. Also included were three seniors who had to give up football because of injuries Charles Hoke, Ezekial Knight, and B.J. Stabler One walkon was also included, lineman Brad Pounds.
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