Alabama Set to Open First Road Game of 2006 Season Against Arkansas

ROLLTIDEDOTCOM
ROLLTIDEDOTCOM

ROLLTIDEDOTCOM

GAME 4: ALABAMA CRIMSON TIDE VS. ARKANSAS RAZORBACKS
September 23, 2006 -- Razorback Stadium (72,000) -- Fayetteville, Ark.
2:30 p.m. (CST) -- CBS Sports

ALABAMA QUICK NOTES:  Alabama is 3-0 for the third consecutive season ... The last time UA posted a 3-0 record in three straight seasons was 1994-96 ... Alabama is 13-2 in its last 15 games, dating back to last season ... The Crimson Tide is playing its first road game of the 2006 season this weekend at Arkansas ... Alabama is 44-25-3 all-time in SEC road openers, but has lost six of the last 10 games ... Junior wide receiver Keith Brown leads the SEC with 6.33 receptions per game ... He is second in yards per game (104.33) and sixth in all-purpose yards (113.67) ... Freshman kicker Leigh Tiffin leads the SEC and ranks third nationally with 2.33 field goals made per game ... Alabama leads  the SEC in turnover margin (+1.67) and time of possession (34:23) ... Junior wide receiver DJ Hall needs 39 yards for 1,000 career receiving yards ... He has one touchdown reception in both games he has played this season and he caught two touchdown passes in last year’s 24-13 win over Arkansas in Tuscaloosa ... Alabama’s 41 points against ULM, marked the seventh time in the Shula era the Crimson Tide scored 40 or more points ... The Crimson Tide rolled up 444 total yards in the win, the 12th 400-yard game under Shula.

ALABAMA PLAYS FIRST ROAD GAME

The University of Alabama football team hits the road for the first this season when the Crimson Tide travels to Fayetteville, Ark., for a Southeastern Conference road game against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Donald W. Reynolds/Razorback Stadium.  The game will be televised nationally by CBS Sports with a 2:30 p.m. (CST) kickoff.  Verne Lundquist (play-by-play), Gary Danielson (analyst) and Tracy Wolfson (sideline reporter) will announce the game.  The game will also be carried on the 65-station Crimson Tide Sports Network with Eli Gold (play-by-play), Kenny Stabler (analyst) and Tom Roberts (sideline reporter).  Alabama improved to 3-0 for the third consecutive season with a 41-7 win over Louisiana Monroe last Saturday night in Tuscaloosa.  The Crimson Tide offense rolled up 444 yards in the win over the Warhawks, the 12th 400-yard game in the Mike Shula era.  Arkansas is coming off a 21-19 road win at Vanderbilt on Saturday.  The Crimson Tide and Razorbacks have combined to beat the Commodores 34-29 the last two weekends. 

THE HEAD COACHES

Alabama head football coach Mike Shula (Alabama, 1986) is in his fourth season with the Crimson Tide and has compiled a 23-17 (.575) record.  Shula’s teams have made progress each season under his watch.  After a 4-9 mark in his rookie campaign in 2003, Alabama went 6-6 in 2004 and finished with a No. 8 national ranking after last year’s 10-2 mark and Cotton Bowl win over Texas Tech.  Shula was named Alabama’s 26th head coach just 114 days prior to the start of the 2003 season and did not have a spring practice session.  He previously served as an assistant coach in the NFL with Tampa Bay, Chicago and Miami.  A three-year letterman at Alabama (1984-86), Shula was a two-time All-SEC selection and threw for over 2,000 yards as a junior (1985), leading the Crimson Tide to dramatic come-from-behind wins over Georgia and Auburn.  Shula is 1-2 (.333) in his career against the Razorbacks.  Arkansas head coach Houston Nutt (Oklahoma State, 1981) is in his ninth season as head coach of the Razorbacks.  He has compiled a 59-41 (.590) overall record in Fayetteville.  The Vanderbilt game was his 100th game with the Razorbacks.  During his tenure, Arkansas has won two SEC Western Division titles (1998 and 2002) and played in six bowl games.  Overall, Nutt is 95-63 (.601) in 14 seasons, which also includes stints at Murray State (1993-96) and Boise State (1997).  A quarterback in college, Nutt played two seasons at Arkansas (1976-77) before he transferred to Oklahoma State (1979-80), where he earned his bachelor’s degree in physical education in 1981.  Nutt is 4-4 (.500) against Alabama.

NEXT GAME

Alabama stays on the road for the second consecutive week as the Crimson Tide travels to Gainesville, Fla., for the first time since the 1999 season to face the No. 5 ranked Florida Gators.  The Alabama-Florida game will be televised nationally by CBS Sports with kickoff set for 2:30 p.m. (CST).  The Florida game will mark Alabama’ s second consecutive appearance on CBS and the ninth in the last two years.


THE ALABAMA-ARKANSAS SERIES

*Alabama owns a 10-6 (.625) on-the-field record over Arkansas in a series that dates back to the 1962 Sugar Bowl at Tulane Stadium in New Orleans.

*Alabama’s 43-3 win over Arkansas in 1993 was later forfeited due to NCAA sanctions, giving the Crimson Tide an official 9-7 (.563) lead in the series.

*After spotting Alabama a 5-0 series lead (1962-94), Arkansas has won six of the last 11 meetings with the Crimson Tide.

*Alabama snapped a two-game series losing streak with a 24-13 win over Arkansas last year in Tuscaloosa.

*In the 24-13 win, wide receiver DJ Hall caught two touchdown passes, including a five-yard pass with 2:22 left in the game to seal the win.  Hall finished the game with three catches for 54 yards and two touchdowns.

*The Crimson Tide and Razorbacks first met in the January 1, 1962 Sugar Bowl at Tulane Stadium in New Orleans.  Alabama won the game 10-3 to clinch its first of six national championships under legendary coach Paul “Bear” Bryant.

*The 1962 Sugar Bowl also featured two future College Football Hall of Famers and Dallas Cowboy stars -- Lee Roy Jordan (Alabama) and Lance Allworth (Arkansas).

*Former Dallas Cowboys head coach Jimmy Johnson and current Cowboys owner Jerry Jones were true freshmen on the 1961 Arkansas team, but did not play that season or against Alabama in the Sugar Bowl.

*The two teams did not meet again until January 1, 1980, when Alabama posted a 24-9 win at the Sugar Bowl in the Louisiana Superdome.  The win capped Bryant’s only 12-0 season at Alabama and was his sixth and final national title.

*In 1992, Gene Stallings led Alabama to a 38-11 win over the Razorbacks in Little Rock and the consensus national championship as the Tide celebrated its 100th year of football. 

*Alabama head coach Mike Shula is 1-2 (.333) in his career against Arkansas. 

*Arkansas head coach Houston Nutt 4-4 (.500) against Alabama.

*Alabama is 4-3 (.571) in games played in the state of Arkansas.

*Alabama is 2-3 (.400) in games played in Fayetteville.  The Crimson Tide has not won in Fayetteville since the 2002 season.

*The home team has compiled an 8-6 (.571) record in the Alabama-Arkansas series.

KINES CONNECTION

*Alabama assistant head coach and defensive coordinator Joe Kines has coached at both Arkansas and Alabama during his 40-year career.

*Kines was the defensive coordinator under Jack Crowe in 1991-92. 

*One game into the 1992 season, Kines was elevated to interim head coach at Arkansas. 

*Kines led the Razorbacks to a 3-6-1 record in his only season as a college head coach.  Kines tenure included Arkansas’ first SEC win (South Carolina) and first win at Tennessee.

*Kines then became assistant head coach and defensive coordinator under Danny Ford in 1993-94 before taking a similar position at Georgia.

*One of Kines closest friends is Arkansas secondary coach Louis Campbell, who has returned to the field after spending the last eight years (1998-2005) as Arkansas’ Director of Football Operations.

*Campbell, a 1972 Arkansas graduate, has also coached at both Alabama and Arkansas.  Campbell was a graduate assistant coach (1973-74) and assistant coach (1975-76, 1980-84) under Paul Bryant and Ray Perkins at Alabama. 

*Campbell and Kines worked on the same staff at Arkansas under Crowe (1991-92) and Ford (1993-94).

*Campbell’s son, Stedman, spent the last two years (2004-05) at Alabama as a defensive graduate assistant coach under Kines.  He is now the cornerbacks coach at the University of North Alabama.


ALABAMA-ARKANSAS NOTEBOOK

*The Alabama roster does not contain any players from the state of Arkansas.

*The Arkansas roster contains four players from the state of Alabama, including freshman flanker London Crawford (Davidson HS - Mobile), sophomore offensive lineman Cody Green (Cullman HS - Oneonta). freshman linebacker Ryan Powers (Tanner HS - Athens) and senior offensive tackle Zac Tubbs (Cullman HS - Cullman).

*Alabama junior offensive lineman Justin Britt attended the same high school as Green and Tubbs.  Britt and his brothers, Wesley and Taylor, were on the same high school football team with Tubbs.

*Alabama offensive coordinator Dave Rader is a native of Tulsa, Okla. (less than two hours from Fayetteville), and is a former player, assistant coach and head coach of the Golden Hurricane.

*Second-year Arkansas defensive coordinator Reggie Herring was the defensive coordinator under Pat Dye at Auburn from 1986-91.

*Arkansas offensive line coach Mike Markuson has had one coaching stint in the state of Alabama.  In 1991-92, Markuson was an assistant coach at Alabama A&M, where he was the offensive coordinator (1992) and o-line coach (1991-92).

*Fourth-year Arkansas defensive line coach Tracy Rocker was a two-time All-America and three-time All-SEC defensive lineman at Auburn University under coach Pat Dye.  As a player at Auburn, Rocker captured both the Outland Trophy (nation’s top interior lineman) and Lombardi Trophy (nation’s top lineman) and was the SEC Defensive Player of the Year as a senior (1989).

ARKANSAS SCOUTING REPORT

*Arkansas has come back from a 50-14 loss to Southern California with a 20-0 win over Utah State and 21-19 victory against Vanderbilt.

*In the Razorback’s last game, freshman quarterback Mitch Mustain threw three touchdown passes and Vanderbilt missed a field goal in the final minute to give Arkansas a 21-19 victory on the road in its SEC opener.

*Arkansas leads the Southeastern Conference in rushing offense at 193 yards per game, over 20 yards more than any other SEC school. They rushed for a season-high 279 yards against Utah State.

*Two Razorbacks are ranked among the top-five in rushing this season.  Sophomore Darren McFadden is second at 99 yards per game and sophomore Felix Jones ranks fifth at 64.7 yards per game. 

*Jones has been a threat for Arkansas in the run game and on special teams. He is averaging a league best 7.2 yards per carry and is eighth with 20 yards per kick return. He ranks seventh in all-purpose yards at 105 per contest.

*Mustain was named SEC Freshman of the Week after throwing three touchdown passes in a win over Vanderbilt. He is seventh in the SEC with 130 passing yards per game and is completing 60.5-percent of his passes. He is fifth in the conference with a pass efficiency of 158.0.

*Tight end Marcus Monk caught five passes for 124 yards and one touchdown against Vanderbilt in the SEC opener. He has 12 catches on the season for 224 yards and two touchdowns. His 74.7 yards receiving per game is fifth in the SEC.

*Fullback Peyton Hillis is one of four players in the SEC averaging over 13 yards per punt return. He has returned five punts for 67 yards with a long of 37 on the year.

*Jacob Skinner is averaging 40.8 yards per punt, good for fourth in the SEC. He has 16 punts for 653 yards with a long of 48 on the season.

*Linebacker Sam Olajubutu is tied for fifth in the SEC with 29 tackles. He has two tackles for a loss, two quarterback hurries and one forced fumble.

*The Razorbacks defensive line has been anchored by Antwain Robinson. He has 20 tackles, three tackles for a loss, two sacks and four quarterback hurries.

ALABAMA’S ROAD RECORD

*Alabama has compiled a 229-120-12 (.670) all-time road record in 351 games.

*The above record does not include neutral site games, bowl games or the Alabama-Auburn game played at Legion Field from 1948-88.

*Alabama posted a 3-1 (.750) record on the road last season with wins over South Carolina, Ole Miss and Miss. State.  The lone road loss came in the regular-season finale at Auburn.

*Alabama is 5-8 (.385) on the road in the Shula era.

*Historically Alabama has been a strong road team. 

*From 1970-75, Alabama won a school record 21 consecutive road games. 

*From 1970-82, Alabama was 35-6 (.854) in 41 road games.

*Since 1982, Alabama is 64-33-1 (.658) on the road.

SEC ROAD OPENERS

*Alabama is 44-25-3 (.631) all-time in SEC road openers.

*The Crimson Tide is 4-6 (.400) in its last 10 SEC road openers, including a 1-2 (.333) under coach Shula.

*Alabama won its SEC road opener last year in convincing fashion by posting a 35-14 win at South Carolina.

*The 2006 season marks the ninth time since 1992 Alabama has played its first SEC road game at Arkansas.

BACK-TO-BACK SEC ROAD GAMES

*Alabama will play back-to-back road games against Arkansas (September 23) and Florida (September 30) the next two weeks.

*The road games at Arkansas and Florida mark the first time since the 2000 season that Alabama has played consecutive SEC road games. 

*During the 2000 season, Alabama played back-to-back road games at LSU (November 4) and Mississippi State (November 11).

*Alabama has played back-to-back SEC road games just 24 times since the 1933 season.

*Alabama has gone 2-0 in those back-to-back SEC road games 10 times.

*Alabama has gone 1-1 in those back-to-back SEC road games nine times.

*Alabama has gone 0-2 in those back-to-back SEC road games three times. 

*The Crimson Tide was 0-1-1 in back-to-back SEC road games in 1957.


ON THIS DATE

*Alabama will be playing its eighth all-time game on Saturday, September 23 when it travels to Fayetteville to meet the Arkansas Razorbacks.

*The Crimson Tide has compiled a 4-2-1 (.643) record on September 23.

*Alabama has not played on this date since a 28-21 loss at Arkansas during the 2000 season in Fayetteville.

*The Crimson Tide’s first game on this date was a 27-0 win over Chattanooga in 1950.

*The lone tie was a 37-37 shootout with Florida State in the 1967 season opener.  FSU’s point total matched what the  Crimson Tide allowed during 10 regular season game in 1966.


GAMES ON SEPTEMBER 23

Year                         Result

1950                        Alabama 27, Chattanooga 0

1961                        Alabama 31, Georgia 6

1967                        Alabama 37, Florida State 37

1972                        Alabama 35, Kentucky 0

1978                        Southern Cal 24, Alabama 14

1989                        Alabama 15, Kentucky 3

2000                        Arkansas 28, Alabama 21


40 POINTS

*Alabama’s 41-7 win over Louisiana Monroe on September 16 marked the sixth time the Crimson Tide has scored 40 points in the Shula era.

*The 41 points also represent the sixth-highest point total in the Shula era.

*Alabama is 5-1 (.833) under Shula when scoring 40 or more points.  The lone blemsih was a 51-43 five-overtime loss to Tennessee on October 25, 2003. 

*Overall, Alabama is 93-1 (.989) all-time when scoring 40-49 points in a game. 

*The loss to Tennessee in 2003 snapped the Crimson Tide’s 88-game winning streak when scoring between 40 and 49 points.


40-POINT GAMES UNDER SHULA

Opponent (Year)                      Points

Western Carolina (2004)         52

Utah State (2004)                    48

Kentucky (2004)                      45

Tennessee (2003)                    43

Louisiana Monroe (2006)        41

South Florida (2003)               40


400 YARDS

*Alabama’s offense rolled up a seaso- high 444 yards of total offense in a 41-7 win over Louisiana Monroe on September 16.

*The Crimson Tide had 225 passing yards and 219 rushing yards in the win over the Warhawks.

*The 444-yard effort marked the 12th time in the Shula era that the UA offense has surpassed 400 yards of total offense.

*Alabama is 11-1 (.917) under Shula when totaling 400 yards of offense.

*The only loss came on October 25, 2003 when UA racked up 473 yards in a 51-43 five-overtime loss to Tennessee.

*The Crimson Tide had five, 400-yard games last season, including a season-high 493 yards in a 35-3 homecoming win over Utah State on October 29, 2005.

400-YARD GAMES UNDER SHULA

Opponent (Year)                      Total Yards

Utah State (2005)                    493

South Carolina (2005)             489

Western Carolina (2004)         478

Tennessee (2003)                    473

Southern Miss (2005)              470

South Florida  (2003)              464

Utah State (2004)                    460

Louisiana Monroe (2006)        444

Texas Tech (2005)                   420

Hawai’i (2003)                         409

Florida (2005)                          407

Mississippi State (2003)          401


LOPSIDED WINS

*Alabama’s 41-7 win over Louisiana Monroe was the third-largest margin of victory in the Shula era.

*The 34-point win was also the largest by Alabama since the 2004 season.

*The largest margin of victory during the last four seasons came during a 52-0 win against Western Carolina on September 18, 2004.

*The Louisiana Monroe game also marked the fifth time since 2003 that Alabama has won a game by more than 30 points.


LARGEST MARGIN OF VICTORY IN SHULA ERA

Year         Opponent (Score)                    Margin

2004        Western Carolina (52-0)          52

2003        Mississippi State (38-0)          38

2006        Louisiana Monroe (41-7)        34

2005        Utah State (35-3)                     32

2004        Utah State (48-17)                   31

2005        Florida (31-3)                          28

2004        Kentucky (45-17)                    28

2005        South Carolina (37-14)           23

2003        South Florida (40-17)              23


ALABAMA FOOTBALL NOTEBOOK

*Alabama is 12-3 (.800) in its last 15 games, dating back to the 2005 season.

*Alabama is riding a four-game winning streak.

*Alabama has forced nine turnovers in its first three games of the season, including an interception on the final play of both games against Hawai’i and Vanderbilt.

*The Crimson Tide leads the SEC and ranks eighth nationally with a +1.67 turnover margin this year.

*Alabama also leads the SEC in time of possession through three games.

*In its eight scoring drives this season, Alabama has averaged 9.25 plays, 62.5 yards and 4:22 time of possession, all three categories lead the SEC.

*Alabama had three rushing touchdowns in the win over Louisiana Monroe, the most in a game since the 2004 season. 

*The last time the Crimson Tide scored three or more rushing touchdowns in a game came against Kentucky on October 9, 2004, a span of 21 games.

*The Crimson Tide’s two touchdown passes against ULM were the most in a game since throwing four TDs passes in win over Utah State on October 29, 2005.

*Alabama’s five touchdowns against ULM were the most in a game since scoring five against Utah State last season.

*Alabama scored on six of seven “red zone” opportunities (34 points) in the win over ULM, including four TDs.

*Alabama had only six “red zone” scores in its first two wins against Hawai’i and Vanderbilt, with just one touchdown.

*The Crimson Tide’s 34 “red zone” points (4 TDs, 2 FGs) against ULM were the most since scoring 38 “red zone” points (5 TDs, 1 FG) at Kentucky on October 9, 2004.

*Alabama is third in the SEC (387.67 yards) in total offense.

*Alabama held ULM to 196 yards of total offense on September 16.  The last time UA held a team to fewer than 200 yards was Nov. 5, 2005 when Mississippi State managed only 103 yards in 17-0 loss to Alabama in Starkville.

*Alabama also held ULM to 73 passing yards in the 41-7 win on September 16.  The Warhawks entered the game averaging 254 yards passing per game and only had 32 passing yards in the second half.

*The last time UA held a team to less than 100 passing yards came against Mississippi State (77 yards) on November 5, 2005. 

*The Crimson Tide posted a sub-20 yard penalty game against Louisiana Monroe on September 16, committing just three penalties for 15 yards. 

*In the first three games of the 2006 season Alabama only committed 11 penalites for 77 yards, the fewest penalties in the SEC.

*ULM's Calvin Dawson rushed for 118 yards September 16, making him the first opposing player to rush for 100 or more yards at Bryant-Denny Stadium since Arkansas' Cedric Cobbs had 198 on Sept. 27, 2003.

*Alabama had gone 19 straight games at Bryant-Denny Stadium without allowing a 100-yard rusher before the ULM game. 

*Since Shula has been coach, three opposing players have rushed for 100 at Bryant-Denny:  Dawson, Cobbs and Northern Illinois' Michael Turner (156 yards on September 20, 2003).

*Tim Castille (17) and Darby (11) have combined for 28 of Alabama’s 33 career rushing touchdowns.


*Castille is UA’s active leader with 17 carerer touchdowns.

*Castille is also UA’s active leader with 102 points.

*John Parker Wilson is 232 yards shy of 1,000 career passing yards.

*Wilson had a career-high two touchdown passes in the win over Louisiana Monroe. 

*The 43-yard TD pass to DJ Hall in the third quarter was the longest of his UA career.

*DJ Hall is 39 yards shy of 1,000 career receiving yards.

*Hall is Alabama’s active leader with eight career touchdown receptions.  Keith Brown and fullback Le’Ron McClain are tied for second with six career touchdown catches.

*Hall has caught at least one pass in eight straight games.

*Darby is 125 yards shy of 3,000 career all-purpose yards.

*Darby has played in 23 career SEC games and logged 367 rushing attempts for 1,749 yards and six TDs. 

*Darby is 251 yards shy of 2,000 career rushing yards in SEC play.

*Redshirt freshman punter P.J. Fitzgerald has the highest percentage of punts downed inside the 20-yard line (5-for-9, .556) in the SEC.

*Fitzgerald’s 43.5-yard punting average against ULM was the best effort in his three-game career.

*Keith Brown leads the SEC with 6.33 receptions per game.

*He also ranks second in the league in receiving yards (104.33) and sixth in all-purpose yards (113.67).

*Brown added a career-long 20-yard run in the win over ULM on September 16.

*Brown had a career-high eight catches in the win over Vanderbilt on September 9.

*He posted back-to-back 100-yard receiving games against Texas Tech (6-141-1) to close out the 2005 season and against Hawai’i (6-132-1) in the 2006 season opener.

*Eric Gray recorded his first career pass breakup against ULM.

*Bobby Greenwood had his first career forced fumble against ULM.

*Prince Hall logged a career-high five tackles in the win over ULM.

*Bryan Kilpatrick had a career-high three tackles and recorded his first career PBU in the win over ULM.

*Travis McCall had two catches for 42 yards (22 long), all career highs against ULM.

*Keith Saunders forced his first career fumble in the win over ULM.

*Freshman kicker Leigh Tiffin leads the SEC and ranks third nationally with 2.33 field goals made per game.

*Tiffin hit all five extra points attempts in the win over ULM.

*Junior defensive back Simeon Castille recorded four tackles and two interceptions in the win over Vanderbilt.

*The two interceptions were the most by an Alabama player since Charles Jones recorded two interceptions against Georgia on October 4, 2003.

*Sophomore Rashad Johnson recorded his first career TFL and second forced fumble against Vanderbilt.

*Senior linebacker Juwan Simpson recorded his third career interception in the win over Vanderbilt.

*Junior defensive lineman Wallace Gilberry recorded his 20th career TFL in the win over Vanderbilt.

*Junior wide receiver DJ Hall (Ft. Walton Beach, Fla.) needs 82 yards for 1,000 career receiving yards.  Hall has 69 career receptions for 918 yards and a team-best seven TDs in his three-year career.

*Brown is second among active players with six TD catches, while McClain is third with five TD receptions.

*Tim Castille leads all active UA players with 16 rushing touchdowns.  He averages one rushing touchdown for every 7.8 rushing attempts.

*McClain’s 15-yard reception against Hawai’i is the longest of his UA career. 

*Junior free safety Marcus Carter recorded his first career TFL in the win over Hawai’i.