Sept. 19, 2009
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - Alabama's 1989 SEC Championship team will return to campus this weekend for their 20th reunion.
The 1989 finished the season with a 10-2 record and a share of the SEC Championship. Alabama opened the year ranked 16th in the national polls and after 10 straight wins climbed to second in the nation. Wins during that stretch included a 62-point explosion in Jackson over Mississippi, a 47-30 win over Tennessee in Legion Field, and a thrilling, last-second 17-16 victory at Penn State. The 1989 squad became the first Alabama team to play in the Sugar Bowl since the Tide's 24-9 win over Arkansas in the Jan. 1, 1980, classic.
The 1989 team was the last Alabama team to lead the SEC in total offense and was led by quarterback Gary Hollingsworth, running back Siran Stacy and tight end Lamonde Russell. Hollingsworth completed 205 of 339 passes (60.5 percent) for 2,379 yards and 14 touchdowns. Stacy ran for 1,079 yards and a team-best 17 TDs. Russell caught 51passes for 622 yards and five TDs. On defense, cornerbacks John Mangum and Efrum Thomas led the way with five interceptions each.
Linebacker Keith McCants and Mangum earned All-American and All-SEC honors. Eight more Tide players were All-SEC selections, including offensive lineman Terrill Chatman, kicker Phillip Doyle, center Roger Shultz, nose guard Willie Wyatt, Hollingsworth, Russell, Stacy and Thomas. The team captains were wide receiver Marco Battle and Wyatt.
More than 60 former players and staff will be in town for this weekend's reunion. The group was honored with a reception on Friday night at the Bryant Museum. The team will have breakfast together on Saturday in the A-Club at Bryant-Denny Stadium and will be recognize during halftime of the Alabama-North Texas game.