Deaderick Gets Start At Kentucky
Brandon Deaderick had been expected to be a starter at right end this season as a fifth year senior, but when he was shot by a would-be robber days before the opening game, his career was in doubt. He made an amazing recovery to see a few plays of action in that opener against Virginia Tech.
Prior to Saturday's game, Deaderick said he was looking forward to going back to his home state "and getting booed." He didn't say he would be starting. But he was in the lineup as Bama went to Lexington and defeated Kentucky, 38-20.
Deaderick is from Elizabethtown, Ky., and considered the Wildcats but chose to sign with Alabama. Saturday he made two tackles, including one for a loss.
While Deaderick was getting his first start of the season, sophomore linebacker Courtney Upshaw had his first career start, and it was a memorable one. Upshaw moved into the starting lineup as Bama shuffled its linebacker corps after losing Dont'a Hightower for the year.
Upshaw plucked a fumble out of the air and returned it 45 yards for a touchdown just before halftime. The score gave Alabama a 21-6 lead at intermission.
Junior linebacker Roland McClain caused the fumble after a pass reception. It is the first fumble returned for a touchdown by the Crimson Tide since McClain returned a fumble 4 yards for a score against Kentucky in Tuscaloosa last season.
McClain earned the SEC Network Player of the Game award against Kentucky with a game-high 11 tackles, 1 forced fumble and 1 interception against the Wildcats.
The Alabama defense forced four Kentucky turnovers, three pass interceptions and one fumble recovery. Mark Barron, Rolando McClain, and Eryk Anders had interceptions and Courtney Upshaw the fumble recovery. For the season, the Crimson Tide has forced eight turnovers (three fumbles and five interceptions). In 2008, Alabama had 15 interceptions for the season
Alabama has eclipsed 30 points in all five games to start the season, a first in Crimson Tide football history. It is the first time an Alabama team has scored 30 or more points in five consecutive games since 1979. for the fifth straight game to start the 2009 season. Only twice in Alabama history has a Crimson Tide team scored 30 or more points in more than five consecutive games: seven in 1971, and six in 1975. This is the fifth time in Alabama history that Alabama has notched 30 points or more in five straight games during any stretch of a season, having also done so in 1920, 1973, 1978 and 1979.
Alabama had a 13-play, 97-yard drive in the second quarter that extended the Crimson Tide's lead to 14-6 late in the first half. It marked the second straight game that Alabama has constructed a march of more than 95 yards. Last week against Arkansas, Alabama moved 99 yards in 13 plays for its final touchdown in a 35-7 victory over the Razorbacks.
Senior tight end Colin Peek capped a 13-play, 97-yard touchdown drive with a three-yard catch, his first touchdown reception in an Alabama uniform. A transfer from Georgia Tech who saw action in 2005 and 2007 for the Yellow Jackets, Peek's touchdown was the second of his collegiate career. Peek's first scoring catch came for Georgia Tech against Georgia on a 17-yard pass from Taylor Bennett on November 24, 2007.
Peek compiled career-best numbers for catches and yards with six receptions for 65 yards. His previous career highs came during his time at Georgia Tech: a five-catch outing vs. Boston College in 2007 and a 49-yard outing vs. Army in 2007.
After 25 pass attempts without an interception against Kentucky, junior quarterback Greg McElroy has not thrown an interception in 106 pass attempts, dating back to a second-quarter pick against Virginia Tech in the opener.
Sophomore running back Mark Ingram rushed for 140 yards on 22 carries against Kentucky, his second 100-yard outing of the season (he also had 150 vs. Virginia Tech).
In addition to rushing for 487 yards through five games this season, Ingram has added 14 receptions for 147 yard and three scores.
Ingram has at least one rushing touchdown in eight of his last nine games and one in each game in 2009. Ingram has scored at least one touchdown in 14 of his 19 games for the Tide. He has 21 career touchdowns (three receiving), including a freshman record 12 (all rushing) in 2008.
Ingram has not lost a fumble in 226 career rushing attempts and 21 career receptions for a total of 230 career touches. He has only put the ball on the ground one time (at LSU in 2008), which was recovered by the Tide.
Senior return man Javier Arenas set up Alabama's first offensive possession of the Kentucky game by returning the opening kickoff 60 yards to the Wildcat 38-yard line. With three kickoff returns for 97 yards against the Wildcats, Arenas has 238 yards on eight kickoff returns this season, raising his average per kickoff return to 29.5 yards. Arenas, Alabama's career leader in kickoff returns and yardage, now has returned 79 kickoffs for 1,853 yards for an average of 23.5 yards per kickoff return.
Alabama Coach Nick Saban is 5-0 in his career against Kentucky and owns a 3-0 mark against the Wildcats in Lexington.
Alabama now leads the all-time series with Kentucky, 35-2-1, and holds a 15-2 series lead in games played in the state of Kentucky. Alabama is 14-2 in Lexington and also posted one win over the Wildcats in Louisville, a game played in 1945. Kentucky's last win over Alabama was 40-34 in overtime in 1997.
Alabama's two-game road swing through the SEC continues with its trip to No. 21 Mississippi. Saturday Alabama carries a 45-9-2 edge in the all-time series and has won five straight over the Rebels, including a 24-20 decision in Tuscaloosa last season. The Tide's last trip to Oxford resulted in a tight 27-24 win. The last four games in the series - all Alabama wins - have been decided by four points or less. UA is 5-3 all-time in Oxford and 12-8-1 in Mississippi, including games in Jackson, Columbus and Greenville.
CBS will televise the Alabama-Mississippi game beginning at 2:30 p.m. CDT.
Alabama has compiled a 181-115-5 record in 301 televised games. This does not include pay-per-view, tape-delayed or closed circuit telecasts. The Crimson Tide owns a 156-96-3 record in 255 regular-season televised games.
Alabama's game captains for the Kentucky game were senior deep snapper Brian Selman, junior quarterback Greg McElroy, senior cornerback Javier Arenas and junior linebacker Rolando McClain. Alabama won the opening coin toss and elected to receive the opening kickoff.
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