Countdown to Kickoff
Alabama Set to Host Mississippi



Oct. 13, 2008

Complete Release in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader

Saturday, Oct. 18, 2008 - 2:30 p.m. (CDT) - CBS
Bryant-Denny Stadium (92,138) - Tuscaloosa, Ala.

TODAY'S GAME: The University of Alabama football team comes off the bye week with a Southeastern Conference showdown against Houston Nutt's Mississippi Rebels at Bryant-Denny Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 18. The game is slated to kickoff at 2:30 p.m. (CDT) and will be televised nationally on CBS with Verne Lundquist, Gary Danielson and Tracy Wolfson calling the action. The Rebels are also coming off of a bye week after dropping a 31-24 loss to South Carolina in Oxford on Oct. 4.

HEAD COACH Nick Saban: Alabama head coach Nick Saban (Kent State, 1973) is in his second season with the Crimson Tide. He was named the school's 27th head coach on Jan. 3, 2007. Saban has compiled a 104-48-1 (.683) record as a collegiate head coach, including an 13-6 (.684) mark at Alabama and a 6-0 record in 2008. He captured his 100th career victory in week two against Tulane and coached his 150th game as a collegiate head coach in week three vs. Western Kentucky. Saban led LSU to a 13-1 record and the BCS National Championship in 2003. Overall, Saban has coached three conference championship teams (1990 Mid-American, 2001 SEC and 2003 SEC) and nine of his 12 teams have played in post-season bowl games. Saban is one of just two Football Bowl Subdivision coaches that have been head coaches for at least 10 years and have never suffered a losing season. For more information on Coach Saban, please see pages 11-12 of this notes package.

RANKINGS: Alabama remained second in this week's Associated Press rankings with Texas moving to No. 1 after a win over Oklahoma. The Crimson Tide did move up two spots in the USA Today Coaches poll to second, behind the Longhorns with Penn State third, Southern California fourth and Texas Tech fifth. The No. 2 ranking is the highest for Alabama since the Tide opened the 1993 season at No. 2 and remained there through the first eight polls of the season. The Tide posted a 17-17 tie with Tennessee in Birmingham on Oct. 16, 1993, and fell to No. 4. Since that time the Crimson Tide has reached as high as No. 3 in the AP poll on three occasions: prior to the 1994 Florida game, to start the 2000 season and prior to the Tide's 2005 game against LSU. They lost all three of those games and slipped in the rankings.

OLE MISS SERIES: Alabama leads the Mississippi series 44-9-1 with four straight wins while winning 20 of 23 games dating back to the 1977 season. Alabama owns a 31-1-1 series lead in games played in the state of Alabama. The Crimson Tide is 22-1 in games played in Tuscaloosa, including an eight-game winning streak. Mississippi's lone win in Tuscaloosa came on Oct. 8, 1988, with a 22-12 victory. Alabama is 7-0-1 against Mississippi in Birmingham and owns a 1-0 record in Mobile and a 2-0 mark in Montgomery. The Tide is 13-8-1 against the Rebels in games played in the state of Mississippi, including a 5-3 mark in Oxford. Ole Miss head coach Houston Nutt owns a 5-5 record against the Tide with all 10 meetings coming during his tenure at Arkansas (1998-07).

TIDE RANKED NO. 2: Alabama has been ranked No. 2 in the last three Associated Press polls, its highest ranking since the 1993 season. The last time Alabama was ranked No. 2 in the AP poll was the Oct. 10, 1993, poll prior to a 17-17 tie with Tennessee on Oct. 16, 1993, at Legion Field. The Crimson Tide was ranked No. 2 in the AP poll for the first eight polls of the 1993 season. The Mississippi game will be the Tide's 55th game when ranked No. 2 in the AP poll. Alabama is 45-7-2 when ranked No. 2 in the AP poll, including an 11-game unbeaten streak. Prior to the Kentucky game, the last time Alabama was ranked in the Top 5 came on Nov. 6, 2005, when the Crimson Tide was ranked third in the AP poll before losing to No. 5 LSU 16-13 in overtime at Bryant-Denny Stadium. The game vs. Kentucky marked the highest-ranked Alabama team to play in Bryant-Denny Stadium since a 43-3 win over Arkansas on Sept. 18, 1993.

HARRIS INTERACTIVE RELEASED: The third Harris Interactive College Football Poll was released on Sunday, Oct. 12, with the Alabama Crimson Tide moving up to No. 2 behind new No. 1 Texas. The Harris Interactive rankings consist of a panel of former coaches, players and administrators along with current and former members of the media. Alabama garnered 2,752 points, trailing the Longhorns (2,804) with Penn State (2,602) third, Oklahoma (2,255) fourth and Southern California (2,225) fifth. Texas received 72 first-place votes followed by the Tide with 37 and Penn State with four.

NEXT GAME: Alabama goes on the road to continue its challenging SEC slate on Oct. 25 to face Tennessee at Neyland Stadium. The Crimson Tide owns a 45-38-8 edge in the all-time series with the Volunteers, including a 41-17 win last year in Tuscaloosa.