Countdown to Kickoff
Alabama Football Game Seven Notes: Southern Miss


Tide hosts unbeaten Golden Eagles in Homecoming at the Capstone
Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Spencer Pennington
Spencer Pennington

Helmet Alabama

Helmet Southern Miss

Alabama Crimson Tide (4-2, 2-2) vs. Southern Miss Golden Eagles (4-0)
October 16, 2004 • 2:30 p.m. CST (Pay Per View)
Bryant-Denny Stadium • Tuscaloosa, Alabama



  • Southern Miss is the first ranked opponent to face Alabama this season ...
  • Four of the Crimson Tide's last five opponents are ranked in this week's Top 25 ...
  • Alabama was 0-4 against ranked teams last year ...
  • Alabama will celebrate its 84th Homecoming this weekend ...
  • UA is 69-13-1 (.825) in all-time homecoming games ...
  • Sophomore Tyrone Prothro leads the SEC and ranks second nationally with a 35.4 kickoff return average ...
  • In his last two games, Prothro has five kickoff returns for a 43.2 yard average ...
  • Alabama has scored (61 points) in second quarter in all six games this season ...
  • The Tide's average margin of victory in its four wins this season is 34.75 points ...
  • Alabama leads the SEC in rushing offense (240.7), time of possession (33:54), passing defense (116.9) and total defense (234.7) ...


The Alabama Crimson Tide (4-2, 2-2 SEC) will face another stern challenge this week as they host the undefeated and nationally ranked  Southern Miss Golden Eagles (4-0, 3-0 C-USA) in the school's annual homecoming game Saturday, Oct. 16 in Tuscaloosa.  The kickoff from Bryant-Denny Stadium is set for 2:37 p.m. (CDT) and the game will be televised on a pay-per-view basis and through the DISH Network, DirecTV and ESPN GamePlan.  Alabama posted a 45-17 win over Kentucky in Lexington last week.  The 45 points were the most scored by Alabama in an SEC game since a 45-7 win over Ole Miss on Oct. 14, 2000.  In addition, the 45 points were the most by Bama in an SEC road game since beating Vanderbilt 48-17 in Nashville in 1991.  The news was not all good in the Bluegrass state last weekend as the Crimson Tide lost its leading rusher with a knee injury in the third quarter.  Senior tailback Ray Hudson (Bonifay, Fla.) is questionable for this week's game with Southern Miss.  Hudson (92-638-4) is averaging 106.3 yards per game this season and was well on his way to a 1,000-yard season on the ground. USM won its fourth straight game of the 2004 season with a thrilling 35-29 overtime win over Houston last Thursday night in Hattiesburg.  Handling the broadcast duties for the Crimson Tide Sports Network pay-per-view telecast will by David Crane (play-by-play), Tyler Watts (analyst), Reggie Collier (analyst) and Chris Stewart (sidelines).  The game will be also be available through the DISH Network, DirecTV and ESPN GamePlan.  Fans can also tune to the 80-plus station Crimson Tide Sports Network with Eli Gold (play-by-play), Kenny Stabler (analyst) and Tom Roberts (sidelines) describing the action. 


Coach Mike Shula (8-11, .421) is 4-2 (.667) in his sophomore season as the head coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide.  Shula compiled a 4-9 (.308) record in his rookie season at Alabama last year against the nation's most difficult schedule.  The Crimson Tide lost to both teams (Oklahoma and LSU) that played in the BCS National Championship game last season.  Shula 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 Alabama to dramatic come-from-behind wins over Georgia and Auburn.  Southern Miss' Jeff Bower (93-62-1, .599) is in his 14th season as head coach of the Golden Eagles. In all, Bower is in his 26th season in Hattiesburg as a player, assistant coach and head coach.  Bower was 23-19-2 as a player from 1972-75 and was named Associated Press All-South Honorable Mention in 1973.  He was an assistant at Southern Miss, SMU, Wake Forest and Oklahoma State before replacing Curley Hallman at USM after the 1990 regular-season.


Alabama will be on the road for the third time in five weeks as they travel to Knoxville, Tenn., on Saturday, Oct. 23 for its annual battle with the Tennessee Volunteers at Neyland Stadium. The kickoff time will be announced by the SEC Office on Monday, Oct. 18th.


*The Alabama-Southern Mississippi football game on Saturday, October 16 will be a pay-per-view telecast in Alabama and Mississippi. Kickoff is slated for 2:37 p.m. (CDT).

*David Crane, former Tide quarterback Tyler Watts and former USM quarterback Reggie Collier will call the action from the booth, while Chris Stewart will be on the sidelines.

*The telecast will be available throughout Alabama and Mississippi on local cable systems, as well as satellite systems.  It will be offered on the DISH Network and DirecTV in Alabama and Mississippi only.

*In Alabama and Mississippi, large C-band users may purchase the game by calling 1-800-TVSTARS.

*In other states, fans may purchase the game through ESPN Game Plan, where available.


*Here are the game day activities surrounding the Alabama-Southern Miss football game.

*The Alabama men's and women's swimming and diving teams will hold an exhibition at the UA Aquatic Center on Friday at 5 p.m.

*The Alabama men's and women's basketball teams will begin practice this weekend for the 2004-05 season.  The men's team will hold its first workout on Saturday, Oct. 16 at 6 a.m., while the women will work for the first time Saturday at 9 a.m.

*The Coca-Cola Kickoff on the Quad begins this Saturday at 11:30 a.m.

*The Coca-Cola inflatables will again be present on the Quad at 11:30 a.m. with their usual activities of throwing a football, kicking at mock goal posts and diving for the goal line with bungees attached.  In addition to sampling of Coke products, free temporary, stick-on Big Al tattoos and shakers will be distributed while supplies last.

*Eli Gold, Ken Stabler and Tom Roberts host the Jeep pre-game radio show on the Crimson Tide Sports Network from the stage in the shadow of Denny Chimes starting at 12:30 p.m.

*The women's softball team will sign autographs at the Mayfield Dairy Team tent from 12:45-1:30 p.m.


*Lawn decorations, a parade and a pep rally are all a part of The University of Alabama tradition of celebrating Homecoming Week, scheduled this year for Oct. 10-16 with the theme "All Tide Together."

*The celebration began with the 16th annual Roll Tide Run on Sunday, Oct. 10, at 2 p.m. The run will begin on Capstone Drive, with registration being held at the rear entrance of Gorgas Library.

*Paint the Town Red will took place on Monday, Oct. 11, from 1-4 p.m. as campus organizations show their school spirit across Tuscaloosa.

*On Tuesday, Oct. 12, Homecoming Queen elections will take place from 9 a.m. - 8 p.m., in the Mortar Board Room of the Ferguson Student Center. A new recognition, Capstone Gentlemen, will also be voted upon that day. Capstone Gentlemen will serve as the male counterparts to the female Homecoming Court, with one `gentleman' and four other male students being selected as runners-up.

*The queen and gentleman will be announced at the pep rally on Friday night; they will be crowned during the halftime show at the football game.

*At 7 p.m., the UA Homecoming Basketball Tournament will take place at the Student Recreation Center.

*On Wednesday, Oct. 13, students can participate in Bowl for Bama, which will be held from 8 p.m.-1 a.m. at the Bama Bowl.

*Thursday's events include the annual choreography contest, which will take place this year in Coleman Coliseum at 7 p.m., as well as hall decoration judging at 4 p.m. and banner contest judging at 5 p.m.

*The events scheduled for Friday, Oct. 15, include the Quad Games, which will take place from 1-4 p.m. and the Road and River Relay beginning at 2 p.m. at Denny Chimes. The judging of the lawn and Paint the Town Red decorations will begin at 1 p.m.

*The traditional bonfire will take place on Friday evening on the UA Quad following the Homecoming Pep Rally. After the pep rally and bonfire, at approximately 8 p.m., University Programs will feature live in concert on the Quad the Wayne Mills Band of Tuscaloosa playing country music and opening for The Roots who play a mixture of hip-hop and R&B music.

*The Homecoming Parade will take place on Saturday at 9 a.m. along University Boulevard with UA Men's Head Basketball Coach Mark Gottfried serving as Grand Marshal. Gottfried was a standout player at UA before being selected in the 1987 NBA draft by the Detroit Pistons. After coaching stints at UCLA and Murray State, Gottfried returned home to his alma mater and has led the Tide to three consecutive NCAA tournaments. He guided the team to the Elite Eight a year ago, advancing farther than any other squad in school history.

*The week will end with the main event, the UA football game against Southern Mississippi at Bryant-Denny Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 16, scheduled for a 2:37 p.m. kickoff.

*Other individual events hosted include:

African-American Alumni Network - Invites you to join them at their tent on the Quad. The organization raises funds to establish endowments and will host various events on the Quad and in the Ferguson Center.

Alabama Alumni Association - Stage on the UA Quad featuring music from the UA jazz ensembles, choreography contest winners, African-American gospel choir, cheerleaders and Big Al and much more. The event begins immediately after the parade.

Capstone College of Nursing - Nursing Alumni Association will host a pre-game barbecue on the Quad beginning two and one-half hours prior to kickoff. Lunch is free for all UACCNA members, with a small fee for non-members. For reservations, contact Holly Warr at 205/348-9876.

Capstone Village - Learn about Tuscaloosa's newest active adult retirement community with patio home and apartment-style floor plans. Refreshments will be available. For more information call 205/248-0028.

Computer-Based Honors Program - A reception will be held at Maxwell Hall two hours prior to kickoff.

College of Arts and Sciences - Invites you to its tent for a continental breakfast with magicians, musicians, dancers, biology experiments and much more beginning at 9 a.m. until kickoff.

College of Communication and Information Sciences - Invites you to its open house in the Rotunda of Reese Phifer Hall beginning at 9 a.m. on Saturday. Watch the parade from the north balcony.

College of Education - Invites all education alumni and friends to a complimentary breakfast from 9-11 a.m. under the college's Reunion Tent on the Quad. For more information call 205/348-7936.

College of Engineering - The Capstone Engineering Society will host a pre-game brunch on the Quad on Saturday at 10 a.m. The College of Engineering invites all friends and alumni to join them under their tent for food and fun on the Quad. For more information contact Carol Sanders at 205/348-7674.

College of Human Environmental Sciences - Friday, Oct. 15 -- 9:30 a.m., VIP tours of the College, 10:30 a.m., Alumni Recognition Convocation in 104 Doster, 5:30-7 p.m., Dean's Reception in the Alumni Room of Doster Hall. Coffee will also be served on Saturday morning in the Alumni Room beginning at 9 a.m.

Culverhouse College of Commerce and Business Administration - Invites friends and alumni to join them three hours prior to kickoff for a pre-game picnic in the lower lobby of Alston Hall. RSVP required. Please call 205/348-6689 to make reservations.

Law School - Invites you to join the dean, faculty and fellow alumni for a pre-game brunch on the Camille Wright Cook Plaza on Saturday at 11 a.m. Call the Law School at 205/348-5752 for ticket information.

National Pan-Hellenic Council - Step Show! Friday, Oct. 15, Student Recreation Center Basketball Gym at 7 p.m. Call 205/348-6114 for ticket information.

Museum of Natural History - Located in Smith Hall, the museum will be open on Saturday from 10:30 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. Tour the Grand Gallery and see fossils, rocks and minerals from the Dinosaur and Ice ages, as well as the 1954 Hodges meteorite. For more information, call 205/348-7550.

Office of Undergraduate Admissions - Will host a tent on the Quad three hours prior to kickoff offering information for students and parents. Come find out how you can be a part of the Crimson Tide family!

School of Social Work - Invites friends and alumni to join them in the Student Lounge of Little Hall for a complimentary breakfast from 9-11 a.m. Tent activities will also be held on the Quad. RSVP to reserve your place at 205/348-3942.

Student Alumni Association - SAA invites all alumni and friends to join them under the Alumni tent on the Quad at 9 a.m. There will be activities for all ages.

The Paul W. Bryant Museum - A unique experience for all fans of college football. Experience 100 years of history and tradition. The museum will be open Saturday from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

University Honors Program - Invites all alumni and parents to a cookout at New Hall two hours prior to kickoff. For more information call 205/348-5500.


*Head basketball coach Mark Gottfried will serve as the grand marshal of the 2004 Homecoming Parade.

*While a standout basketball player at UA, Mark Gottfried started in 98 consecutive games for the Crimson Tide. Gottfried averaged 10.3 points per game his senior season and set the school record for single game 3-point shots made with eight against Vanderbilt in 1987. He also set the school record for career 3-point percentage (.485) in 1987 as well. Alabama advanced to the NCAA "Sweet 16" all three seasons he played, 1985-86-87.

*Gottfried excelled academically at UA as well. He graduated with a degree in Communications in 1987 and was named an Academic All-SEC. He was awarded the 1986 Bryant Award, which is presented to the top UA scholar-athlete.

*Gottfried was drafted in the seventh round of the 1987 NBA draft by the Detroit Pistons, was an assistant coach for UCLA from 1987-95, and was the head coach at Murray State from 1995-97.

*After coaching at Murray State, Gottfried returned to his alma mater as the head basketball coach for the Crimson Tide. Coach Gottfried has had great success in his nine seasons at the Capstone.

*He is the only coach to lead the Tide to a number one ranking, the only coach to take the Tide to the NCAA "Elite Eight," and the only coach to experience an SEC championship as both a player and a coach.

*Coach Gottfried was named the 2002 Associated Press SEC Coach of the Year and has coached 17 NBA players.

*Gottfried and his wife, Elizabeth, have five children: Brandon, 13; Mary Layson, 12; Cameron, 9; Aaron, 8; and Dillon, 6.


*The Crimson Tide will play its 84th Homecoming football game this Saturday as they host the Southern Miss Golden Eagles here at Bryant-Denny Stadium.  

*Alabama has compiled a 69-13-1 (.825) all-time homecoming record, including last year's 17-3 win over Southern Miss.

*The Crimson Tide has won back-to-back homecoming games for the first time since 1998-99.

*Alabama has not won three in-a-row since posting six straight wins from 1991-96.

*Since 1988, UA is 10-5 (.667) in its last 15 homecoming games.

*Coach Paul "Bear" Bryant was a perfect 25-0 (1.000) in homecoming games at Alabama. 

*In addition, the Crimson Tide won a school record 26 consecutive homecoming games from 1958-83.

*The entire 1987 season, including Bama's 38-10 homecoming win over Southwestern Louisiana,  was played in Birmingham's Legion Field due to stadium renovations at Bryant-Denny Stadium.

*Alabama's most common homecoming opponent is Miss. State.  The Crimson Tide and Bulldogs have met 24 times, with Alabama posting a 20-4 record against MSU.

*Alabama is 6-0 (1.000) in homecoming games against Southern Miss.

*Alabama has compiled a 29-5 (.853) record in Homecoming games against teams from the state of Mississippi.  


*Junior Spencer Pennington became the third different quarterback to start for Alabama this season when he made his second career start at Kentucky on Oct. 9.

*In addition, Pennington is the fourth different starting quarterback in coach Shula's 19 games as head coach. 

*Pennington, subbing for the injured Marc Guillon (sore back) led the Crimson Tide to a 45-17 win over the Wildcats for his first career win at the starting quarterback.

*In the win over UK, Pennington completed seven of 11 passes for 83 yards and engineered six scoring drives, including three drives of 78 yards or longer.

*Pennington is now 1-1 (.500) in his career as Bama's starting quarterback. 

*After two starts on the road, Pennington is expected to make his first career start in Bryant-Denny Stadium this Saturday against Southern Miss.

*Guillon (Chico, Calif.) made two starts this season in the absence of junior Brodie Croyle (torn ACL).

*Guillon was 0-2 (.000) as the starter, losing two SEC games against Arkansas and South Carolina.

*Guillon made his first career start on Sept. 25, 2004 in a 27-10 loss at Arkansas.

*Guillon took all 64 snaps under center in his debut with the Crimson Tide.

*The redshirt sophomore completed just six of 18 passes for 54 yards and threw one interception in the loss.  He also had one rushing attempt for minus one yard.

*In his second start against South Carolina (Oct. 2), Guillon completed nine of 18 passes for 63 yards and threw two interceptions before being benched in the third quarter.

*Prior to the Arkansas game, Guillon had taken just 18 snaps this season in games against Utah State and Western Carolina.

*He took 15 snaps under center against the Catamounts, leading the Crimson Tide to a pair of second-half touchdowns.

*Guillon was 5-for-7 for 71 yards and one TD in the 52-0 win.

*He made his Crimson Tide debut against Utah State on Sept. 3 and took three snaps at the end of the game, handing the ball off all three times to freshman tailback Aaron Johns.

*Croyle (Rainbow City) started the first three games of the season for Alabama before suffering a season-ending knee injury in the third quarter of the Western Carolina game on Sept. 18.

*In those three games, Croyle completed 44 of 66 passes for 534 yards and five touchdowns.  He did not have an interception in leading the Crimson Tide to a 3-0 start.


*For the second year in a row, Alabama has used three different starting quarterbacks this season.

*Croyle (3), Guillon (2) and Pennington (1) have each started at least one game in the Crimson Tide's first six games this season.

*In fact, Alabama has used four different starting quarterbacks in coach Shula's 19 games as the Crimson Tide's head coach.

*Alabama also started three different quarterbacks in 2003 in coach Mike Shula's first season.

*The list of starting quarterbacks last season included Croyle, Pennington and Brandon Avalos.

*Croyle started the first four games of the 2003 season before injuring his shoulder in the double-overtime loss to Arkansas (Sept. 27, 2003).

*Pennington made his first career start on Oct. 4., 2003 at Georgia.  He completed nine of 20 passes for 109 yards, with one TD and one interception before leaving the game with a shoulder injury.

*Avalos, the third-string quarterback, started the next week against Southern Miss (Oct. 11) and led UA to a 17-3 win despite just 12 passing yards.

*Prior to the 2003 season, the last time a third-team quarterback eventually started a game for Alabama was Oct. 17, 1987 when Jeff Dunn led the Crimson Tide to a 41-22 win over Tennessee at Legion Field. 


*Alabama has compiled an 8-11 (.421) record in the 19 games under head coach Mike Shula.

*Alabama's average margin of victory in the Shula era is 27.5 points per game.

*The eight wins in the Shula era have been by a combined 220 points.

*The Crimson Tide has four wins this season by a combined 132 points.

*The average margin of victory this season is 33 points per game.

*Alabama's four wins last season were by a combined 88 points.

*The average margin of victory last season was 22 points per game.

*In the eight wins in the Shula era, Alabama has scored 40 or more points four times, including three wins this season.

*Alabama's 27-17 win over Kentucky last season was the narrowest margin of victory in the Shula era.  Alabama also posted a 14-point win over Southern Miss (17-3) last season.


*While the Crimson Tide's eight victories in the Mike Shula era have been blowouts, the 11 losses have all been just slightly under two touchdowns per game.

*Alabama's average margin of defeat in the Shula era is 11.36 points per game.

*The 11 losses in the Shula era have been by a combined 125 points.

*The Crimson Tide's two losses this season have been by a combined combined 34 points.

*The average margin of defeat this season is 17 points per game.

*Alabama's nine losses last season were by a combined 91 points.

*The average margin of defeat last season was 10.1 points per game.

*In 10 of the 11 losses, Alabama has allowed more than 20 points.

*The Crimson Tide has allowed 30 or more points in five of the 11 losses under Shula.


*The Alabama Crimson Tide enters this weekend's game against Southern Miss with the best rushing offense in the SEC.

*Alabama leads the league with 240.2 rushing yards per game.  Alabama also ranks 13th in the nation in rushing offense this season.

*In six games, Alabama has rushed the ball 270 times for 1,443 yards and 14 touchdowns.

*Alabama is coming off its best rushing attack of the season as the Tide ran a season-high 63 times for 304 yards in a 45-17 win over Kentucky on Oct. 9.

*The 63 rushing attempts and 304 rushing yards were the most in the Shula era.

*The last time Alabama rushed for 300 yards in a game was Sept. 21, 2002 when the Crimson Tide had 64 carries for 351 yards in a 20-7 win over Southern Miss.

*The bulk of the Crimson Tide's rushing offense this season has come from senior tailback Ray Hudson, who suffered a knee injury against Kentucky.

*In six games this season, Hudson had 92 rushing attempts for 638 yards and four touchdowns.  Hudson was the SEC's second-leading rusher at the time of his injury.

*Sophomores Kenneth Darby (Huntsville) and Tim Castille (Birmingham) and true freshman Aaron Johns (Thomasville) will pick up the rushing load in Hudson's absence.

*Darby is the second-leading rusher on the team and 10th best in the SEC with a 72.8 per game average this season.

*In six games, he has rushed the ball 79 times for 437 yards and a team-leading five touchdowns.  He had two touchdowns at Kentucky (20-99) on Oct. 9th and averages 5.5 yards per carry this season.

*Castille has 43 rushing attempts for 192 yards and four touchdowns in six game this season.  He averages 4.5 yards per carry for the Crimson Tide.

*Darby (5), Hudson (4) and Castille (4) have scored 13 of the Crimson Tide's 14 rushing TDs this season.

*Johns has played in only three games, but got some valuable experience at Kentucky on Oct. 9, when he had a season-high 12 carries for 30 yards in the fourth quarter.

*For the season, Johns has 26 rushing attempts for 115 yards, including 11 carries for a season-high 86 yards in the win over Western Carolina (Sept. 18).


*The Alabama defense has shown marked improvement this season. 

*Through six games, Alabama has allowed 234.7 yards per game to lead the SEC and rank fourth nationally in total defense. 

*Alabama has trimmed 87.6 yards per game off last year's five-game total entering Saturday's  game with Southern Miss.

*Last year at this time, the Crimson Tide defense had given up an average of 322.3  yards per game following back-to-back losses to Arkansas and Georgia.

*Through six games in 2003, Alabama ranked sixth in the SEC and 30th nationally in total defense.

*In addition, Alabama leads the SEC in passing defense (116.3) and ranks second in pass efficiency defense (92.2 rating), third in scoring defense (14.7 ppg) and fifth in rushing defense (118.3 yds).

*On the national scale, Alabama ranks among the nation's Top 10 teams in pass defense (3rd), total defense (4th) and pass efficiency defense (5th) this season.

*One stat that jumps off the page is the improvement in pass defense from since last season.

*The Alabama defense has allowed just 116.3 passing yards per game, compared to 213.3 yards in 2003, an improvement of nearly 100 yards per game.


*The Alabama Crimson Tide has the best kickoff return average of any team in the country through six games.

*The Crimson Tide leads the NCAA and SEC with 34.5 yard kickoff return average heading into Saturday's game with Southern Miss.

*For the season, Alabama has 13 kickoff returns for 448 yards and one touchdown in six games.

*Bama's 34.5 kickoff return average is a marked improvement from last year.

*Through six games in 2003, Alabama ranked 11th in the SEC and 84th nationally with a 19.3 yard average on kick returns.

*One of the main reasons for Bama's success this year is sophomore Tyrone Prothro (Heflin), who leads the SEC and ranks second  nationally with 35.4 yard average.

*Prothro was recently named the SEC Special Teams Player of the Week after his school-record tying 100-yard kickoff return at Kentucky on Oct. 9. 

*Prothro, who has the SEC's lone kickoff return for a touchdown this season, had two kick returns for 125 yards in the win over UK.

*Against South Carolina (Oct. 2), Prothro had three kickoff returns for 91 yards in the loss to the Gamecocks.

*In the last two weeks, Prothro has five returns for 216 yards, an average of 43.2 yards per return.

*For the season, Prothro has eight kickoff returns for 283 yards (35.4 avg) and one touchdown.

*Junior Brandon Brooks (Birmingham) has also been a threat this season.  Brooks has five kickoff returns for 165 yards, including an 87-yarder against Western Carolina (Sept. 18).

*Brooks is averaging 33.0 yards per return but has not met the statistical minimums to make the SEC and NCAA leader boards.

*Prothro (283) and Brooks (165) have nearly as many kickoff return yards (448) in six game this season as the Alabama team had in 13 games (766 yards) last year.

*In 13 games last year, Alabama had 34 kickoff returns for 766 yards (22.5 avg) and one touchdown.


*Alabama sophomore kick returner Tyrone Prothro (Heflin) tied the school record with his 100-yard kickoff return at Kentucky on Oct. 9.

*Prothro's kickoff return, which gave Alabama a 38-17 lead in the fourth quarter, is the seventh 100-yard kickoff return in Alabama history and the first since 1988.

*Pierre Goode was the last UA player with a 100-yard kickoff return as he took the second half kickoff the distance in a loss to Ole Miss on Oct. 8, 1988 in Tuscaloosa.

*The last kickoff return by an Alabama player was Brandon Brooks' 96-yard return to open the second half last year at Auburn. 


Player               Opponent, Year
Tyrone Prothro       at Kentucky, 2004
Pierre Goode         Ole Miss, 1988
Willie Shelby        at Kentucky, 1973
George Ranger        Auburn, 1969
Ray Ogden            Auburn, 1964
Gary Martin          at Miami, Fla., 1963
Jim Burkett          Duquesne, 1949


*Alabama has had 10 touchdown returns in 19 games during the Shula era.

*The Crimson Tide already has three touchdown returns in six games this season.

*In the season opener, true freshman Simeon Castille posted a 31-yard interception return in the third quarter of the season opener with Utah State.

*Another true freshman Marcel Stamps blocked a punt and was credited with a 29-yard punt return for a touchdown in the win over Western Carolina.

*Sophomore Tyrone Prothro tied the Alabama record with a 100-yard kickoff return at Kentucky on Oct. 9.  It was the seventh 100-yard kickoff return in school history and first since 1988.

*Alabama scored on five different returns last season, accounting for seven total touchdown returns.

*The 2003 season is believed to be the first time in school history that Alabama has had an interception return, fumble return, punt return, kickoff return and blocked field goal return for touchdowns in the same season.

*In 1990 and 1999, Alabama scored on a punt return, kickoff return and interception return, but did not have the fumble return for a touchdown.


Player, Return (Opponent)

  • Charlie Peprah 59-yard interception return (USF)
  • Shaud Williams 73-yard punt return (USF)
  • Charles Jones 33-yard punt return (Georgia)
  • Juwan Garth 10-yard fumble return (Georgia)
  • Chris James 44-yard punt return (Ole Miss)
  • Brandon Brooks 96-yard kickoff return (Auburn)
  • Roman Harper 73-yard blocked FG return (Hawai'i)
  • Simeon Castille 31-yard interception return (Utah St.)
  • Marcel Stamps 14-yard blocked punt return (WCU)
  • Tyrone Prothro 100-yard kickoff return (Kentucky)


Alabama has scored at least 40 points in three games in a season for the first time since 1993 ... The last time UA scored 40 or more points four times in a season was 1991 ... UA's 45 points at Kentucky are the most in an SEC game since a 45-7 win over Ole Miss in 2000 ... The 45 points are the most in an SEC road game since a 48-17 win over Vanderbilt in 1991 ... Alabama continues to lead the SEC in rushing (240.2) ... Alabama also leads the SEC in time of possession (33:54) ... Alabama held the ball for 41:05 in its win at UK on Oct. 9th ... The last time Alabama held the ball for more than 40 minutes was the 1999 SEC Championship game against Florida (40:11 TOP) ... The Crimson Tide's average time of possession in their 27 scoring drives this season is 2:41 ... Alabama has 12 scoring drives of less than two minutes ... Bama has six scoring drives of more than five minutes ... UA's  99-yard scoring drive against Kentucky (14-99-7:30) is the longest in the SEC this season ... The Crimson Tide also logged a 98-yard scoring drive against Ole Miss (10 plays, 5:24 TOP) earlier this year ... Alabama had two scoring drive of 85 yards or more in the Ole Miss game ... Bama has four scoring drives this season of 80 or more yards ... Alabama ranks last in the SEC in passing offense (135.3) ... In the last three games, Alabama has thrown for 207 total yards and has not surpassed 100 yards in any of three games ... Bama does not have a touchdown pass in its last three games ... Overall, the Tide has gone 13 quarters without a TD pass ...  The offensive line has allowed only five sacks in six games this season ...

The Bama o-line did not allow a sack against Western Carolina, Arkansas or Kentucky ... Sophomore receiver Tyrone Prothro (Heflin) is the only UA player with at least one pass reception in all six games this season ... Prothro has at least one reception in 12 of his 15 games at UA, including 12 straight ... Sophomore fullback Tim Castille (Birmingham) did not catch a pass at Kentucky to snap his streak of 13 consecutive games with at least one reception ... Castille has caught at least one pass in 16 of his 18 games at UA ... Bama quarterbacks Brodie Croyle (7-9), Spencer Pennington (1-1) and Marc Guillon (0-2) are a combined 8-12 (.400) in their 20 career starts for the Tide ... Alabama is 4-0 this season when scoring first ...Under coach Shula, Alabama is 7-4 (.636) when scoring first ... Bama is 0-2 (.000) this season when opponents score first ... Under Shula, Alabama is 1-7 (.125) when opponents score first, including a seven-game losing streak ... Alabama has scored 61 second-quarter points, the most in any quarter this year ... UA has scored in the second quarter in all six games this season and in seven straight games dating back to last year ... Alabama is 21-for-24 (.875) in the "red zone" this season, with 15 touchdowns ... The Crimson Tide's "red zone" successes have resulted in 138 points this season ... Alabama has 16 plays this season of 25 or more yards and eight plays of 40 or more yards ... Alabama has scored via the rush, pass, interception return and punt return ... Alabama has scored 52 points off turnovers this season, including 14 against Kentucky (Oct. 9) ... The Crimson Tide opened the season by scoring off six of its opponents first eight turnovers ... In the last three games, Bama has scored just twice off seven opponents miscues ...Alabama has played two turnover-free games this season (Utah State and Kentucky) ... The last time Alabama did not commit a turnover in an SEC game was Nov. 9, 2002 against Miss. State ... The last time UA did not have a turnover in an SEC road game was Nov. 2, 2002 at Vanderbilt ... Alabama threw a season-high four interceptions in its loss to South Carolina (Oct. 2) ... The Crimson Tide opened the season with 77 pass attempts before its first interception ... All five of UA's interceptions this season have come in two games (Arkansas and South Carolina) ...


Alabama has forced an SEC-best 44 three-and-outs this season ... Bama leads the SEC in pass defense (116.3) and total defense (234.7) through six games ... In addition, the Crimson Tide ranks second in pass efficiency defense (92.2) and third in scoring defense (14.7) ...Bama is also among the NCAA leaders in pass defense (3rd), total defense (4th), pass efficiency defense (5th) and scoring defense (17th) ... UA has allowed only 111 total passing yards in the second half in its last four games ... Those four opponents are averaging just 27.75 passing yards in the second half ...Bama's defense is fourth in the SEC this season with the fewest TDs (11) allowed ... Alabama defense held Kentucky to 29 total yards (19 snaps) in the final 27:17 of the game in Lexington ... During that time, Alabama also forced three turnovers and blocked one punt ... Senior linebacker Cornelius Wortham (Calhoun City, Miss.) recorded his 200th career tackle against South Carolina ... He now has 205 career stops for the Tide ... Junior free safety Roman Harper (Prattville) is just four tackles shy of 200 career tackles ... Harper and Wortham are the co-leaders in the UA defense with 40 tackles this season ... Harper leads the team with 25 solo stops ... Harper and Wortham are tied for seventh in the SEC with 40 total stops through six games ... Harper is fourth among SEC defensive backs with 40 stops this season ... Redshirt freshman defensive tackle Wallace Gilberry (Bay Minette) is tied for second in the SEC with three sacks ... Gilberry is also second in the league with two fumbles forced ...  Senior cornerback Anthony Madison (Thomasville) is fifth in the SEC with eight passes defended ... Alabama has forced 15 turnovers this season ... UA has scored on eight of those turnovers, resulting in 52 points, including a 31-yard interception return by Simeon Castille in the season opener against Utah State ... Bama has allowed only 10 plays this season of 25 or more yards ... Alabama has the second-best "red zone" defense in the SEC this season ... UA opponents are 10-for-15 (.667) this season, with eight TDs ... In the last three games, Arkansas, South Carolina and Kentucky are a combined 9-for-12 (.750) in the red zone, with seven TDs ... Alabama allowed only seven "red zone" points in its three wins this season ... UA has allowed 47 "red zone" points in its two losses ...  The UA defense has pitched a shutout in 13 of 24 quarters this season ... In a three-game stretch with Ole Miss, Western Carolina and Arkansas, the Alabama defense allowed only 14 points in 11 quarters ...  Alabama is the only team in the SEC with at least one shutout in each of the last three seasons ... Alabama has forced an SEC-best 44 three-and-outs this season ...


Alabama leads the NCAA in kickoff returns (35.4) this season ... Tyrone Prothro leads the SEC and ranks second in the NCAA with a 35.4 kickoff return average ... Prothro tied the Alabama record with a 100-yard kickoff return against Kentucky on Oct. 9th ... It was the seventh 100-yard kickoff return in school history and first since 1988 ... He had two kickoff returns at Kentucky (125 yards) for a 62.5 yard average ... In his last two games, Prothro has five kick retruns (216 yds) for a 43.2 yard average ... By contrast, Alabama is 11th in the SEC and 107th in the NCAA with a 4.8-yard punt return average this season ... Senior kicker Brian Bostick has made all but two kicks (30 of 32) this season ... He has made all 24 PAT attempts and is 6-for-8 in field goals ... Bostick ranks fourth among kickers in scoring (7.0 ppg), sixth overall in scoring and fourth  in field goals (1.0) per game ... Senior punter Bo Freelend (Eutaw) is fifth in the SEC in punting average (41.1) and second in the SEC in net punting (39.7) ... Redshirt freshman Jamie Christensen (Norcross, Ga.) handles the kickoffs for the Tide ... Christensen has 11 touchbacks in 36 kickoffs this season ...  Freshman Marcel Stamps (Brantley) had a blocked punt return (29 yards) for a touchdown against Western Carolina ... Anthony Madison recorded his first blocked punt of the season at Kentucky ... It was the second of his UA career ...


*Alabama leads the all-time series with Southern Miss, 32-6-2 (.825) since the first meeting in 1947. 

*The Crimson Tide has won 11 of the last 12 meetings with the Golden Eagles since 1992.  USM's lone win was a 21-0 victory at Legion Field during the 2000 season.

*This is the 41st meeting between these two teams, dating back to 1947.

*The Alabama series is the fourth-longest series in Southern Miss history.  The Crimson Tide and Golden Eagles are meeting for the 40th time this Saturday at Bryant-Denny Stadium.  The Golden Eagles have played only Memphis (51), Louisiana-Lafayette (47) and Louisiana Tech (42) more often.

*Southern Miss' 40 games with Alabama are the most by any school not currently in the SEC or has not been in the SEC.

*All 40 games in the series have been played in the state of Alabama.

*Alabama and USM have played every year since 1992.

*The Crimson Tide's longest series winning streak is 11 games (1957-80).  UA also had a 13-game unbeaten streak from 1956-81.

*USM's longest series winning streak is two games from 1953-54.


The Alabama roster contains four players from the state of Mississippi, including wide receiver Keith Brown, kicker Mike McLaughlin (Gautier), offensive lineman Travis West (Laurel) and linebacker Cornelius Wortham (Calhoun City).


The Southern Miss roster contains 16  players from the state of Alabama, including Kenneth Boley (Athens), Michael Boley (Athens), Antwon Courington (Jasper), James Denley (Foley), Anthony Harris (Demopolis), Caleb Hendrix (Ensley), Pierre Hutchins (Tuscaloosa), James Nelson (Birmingham), Tyler Patterson (Clanton), LeVon Pears (Mobile), Myron Powe (Camden), Chaz Richards (Troy), Eric Scott (Scottsboro), Rick Thompson (Mobile), Alan Whitney (Fairhope) and Bradley Worthington (Highland Home).


Here are notebook items and historical facts surrounding the Alabama-USM football series.

*Since the USM-Alabama series began in 1947 three Crimson Tide coaches made their coaching debuts against the Golden Eagles, including Red Drew (1947), Bill Curry (1987) and Gene Stallings (1990, lost to Brett Farve and USM 27-24 at Legion Field).

*Coach Mike Shula is the third Alabama alum to play and coach against Southern Miss, joining Ray Perkins and Mike DuBose.

*Shula is 1-0 (1.000) in his head coaching career against USM.

*In addition, Shula was 2-0 against the Golden Eagles as the Tide's starting quarterback from 1985-86.

*Alabama linebacker Cornelius Wortham

is the first cousin to USM running back Sherron Moore. 

*USM's Jeff Bower is 4-21-1 as a player, assistant coach and head coach against Alabama. 

*Bower's first game as a head coach at Southern Miss was a 37-21 loss to North Carolina State on Dec. 28, 1990 at the All-American Bowl at Birmingham's Legion Field.

*USM was Alabama's last opponent ever at the Cramton Bowl in Montgomery.  USM won that 1954 meeting, 7-2.

*USM was also Alabama's last opponent ever at Ladd Stadium in Mobile.  The Crimson Tide posted a 63-14 win in 1969.

*The Crimson Tide and Southern Miss played to a 13-13 tie here at Bryant-Denny Stadium in 1956, one of only three ties in the stadium's history.  Alabama also tied Howard (1935) and Miss. Sate (1953) here at Bryant-Denny Stadium.

*Dennis Homan caught 11 passes and a school record three TD passes in Alabama's 25-3 win over Southern Miss at Ladd Stadium in 1967.  Homan's 11 catches still rank third on the school's single-game receptions list, later tied by Quincy Jackson vs. BYU (1998).

*The Alabama single-game record for touchdown receptions is three and all three of those did it against Southern Miss, including Al Lary (1950), Homan (1967) and Michael Vaughn (1998).

*Southern Miss beat Alabama 38-29 on Nov. 13, 1982 in Paul Bryant's final game as head coach of the Crimson Tide here in Tuscaloosa.  The loss also snapped UA's NCAA record 57-game home winning streak in Bryant-Denny Stadium.

*Alabama recorded its 600th all-time win with a 28-16 victory over USM on Nov. 12, 1983 at Legion Field.

*The 2001 Alabama-USM game was scheduled for Sept. 15, but was postponed due to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in NY City and Washington DC. 

*The game was rescheduled for Nov. 29, 2001 at Legion Field and Alabama posted a 28-15 win over USM.

*The 2001 Alabama-USM game was one of only three games since 1963 not to be played on its regularly scheduled date, joining Miami (1963) and Texas A&M (1988).

*Quarterback Andrew Zow tied coach Mike Shula's career record for most TD passes (35) in that win over USM.

*Former Alabama All-American Allison Pooley Hubert was head coach at Southern Miss (1931-36) and compiled a 26-24-5 (.518) ledger.  Hubert quarterbacked the 1925 Alabama to a 2-19 win over California in the 1926 Rose Bowl and the national championship.