Alabama Football: Special Teams Notebook

ROLLTIDEDOTCOM
ROLLTIDEDOTCOM

ROLLTIDEDOTCOM

ALABAMA SPECIAL TEAMS

  • Alabama returns all but one of its specialists from last season.
  • The Crimson Tide’s special teams have shown marked improvement during the first seven games of the 2007 season.
  • Alabama leads the SEC and ranks 7th nationally with a 16.5 yard punt return average.
  • Sophomore Javier Arenas (Tampa, Fla.) is the Crimson Tide’s top return specialist. 
  • He has four returns (3 punts and 1 kickoff) or more than 50 yards this season.
  • Arenas is second in the SEC and 11th nationally with a 16.1 yard punt return average this season.
  • In eight games, he has 16 punt returns for 257 yards, including a 69-yard return against Vanderbilt on Sept. 8.
  • In 20 career games, he has 47 punt returns for 543 yards (11.6 average) and two touchdowns. 
  • He had a 65-yard punt return against Florida International and an Alabama bowl record 86-yard punt return against Oklahoma State in 2006.
  • The Alabama career record for most punt returns is three for touchdowns held by Harry Gilmer.
  • Arenas has 15 kickoff returns for 379  yards (25.3 average) this season.
  • His best game came at Ole Miss (Oct. 13), where he had four returns for 93 yards.
  • He was named the SEC Special Teams Player of the Week against Ole Miss (Oct. 13), where he had 164 all-purpose yards (93 KOR and 71 PR) against the Rebels.
  • Arenas also added a season-high 62-yard kickoff return against Tennessee on Oct. 20.
  • Junior Jonathan Lowe (Phenix City, Ala.) is the backup to Arenas. 
  • Lowe has nine kickoff returns for 224 yards (17.6 average) this season.  He made his Alabama debut with a 23-yard kickoff  return and a 17-yard punt return against Western Carolina on Sept. 1.
  • Sophomore Leigh Tiffin (Muscle Shoals, Ala.) is the Crimson Tide’s starting kicker, handling all kickoffs, field goal and extra attempts.
  • Tiffin is tied for first in the SEC (t7th NCAA) with 1.88 field goals per game.
  • He also ranks fifth in the SEC with 8.9 points per game.
  • Tiffin is 26-for-26 in extra points this season and 38-of-39 in his two-year career.
  • Tiffin is 15-of-22 on field goal attempts this season and has been successful on seven of his last nine attempts.
  • He has converted 23-of-36 career field goal attempts for the Tide.
  • He appeared in five games last season and hit 8-of-13 field goals and 12-of-13 extra point attempts. 
  • His father, Van (1983-86), was an All-American kicker at Alabama in 1986 and set the UA record with 135 consecutive career extra points.
  • Sophomore Andrew Friedman (Fairhope, Ala.) made his 2007 season debut with his first career extra point attempt against Arkansas on Sept. 15.  He has now played in four games at UA.
  • Senior Jamie Christensen (Norcross, Ga.), who has also handled kickoffs the last three years, has hit 29 of 42 career field goal attempts