Alabama's Comeback Falls Short at Auburn, 28-23

ROLLTIDEDOTCOM
ROLLTIDEDOTCOM

ROLLTIDEDOTCOM
Saturday, November 22, 2003

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UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA POST-GAME NOTES
Auburn 28, Alabama 23

*Auburn defeated Alabama 28-23 in front of a sellout crowd of 86,063 fans Saturday night at Jordan-Hare Stadium.  The win over Alabama was Auburn's second in row, marking their first back-to-back wins over the Crimson Tide since 1988-89.

*The win by Auburn is the first for the home team in this series since Alabama's 31-17 win at Legion Field in 1998.

*The win was also Auburn's first over Alabama here at Jordan-Hare Stadium since an 18-17 win during the 1997 season.  Alabama had won the last two meetings here on the Plains, beating Auburn 28-17 in 1999 and 31-7 in 2001.

*Alabama continues to lead the all-time series with Auburn, 38-29-1. 

*Auburn's 28 points tonight are their most against Alabama since a 31-27 win here in Auburn in 1995.

*The game belonged to the Williamses on offense for both teams. Auburn's Carnell Williams dominated the show for the Tigers' offense, running 26 times for 204 yards and two TDs in the win.  Alabama's Shaud Williams (Andrews, Texas) also did his part for the Tide, running 18 times for 92 yards and the Tide's lone offensive touchdown.

*The Williams duo accounted for 296 rushing yards (44 rushes) and three TDs in the game.

*Williams 204 rushing yards are the most by an Auburn back since Bo Jackson ran for 256 yards and two TDs in the Tigers' 23-20 win in 1983.

*Auburn's Carnell Williams scored on an 80-yard touchdown run on the very first play of the game to give the Tigers a 7-0 lead with 14:45 left in the first quarter.  The 80-yard touchdown equalled the second-longest TD run in series history, tying Alabama's Bennie Nelson in a 10-8 loss to Auburn in 1963.  The longest TD run from scrimmage in series history was an 85-yard run by Auburn's Joe Cribbs in a 48-21 loss to Alabama in 1977.

*Auburn's offense generated 519 yards in total offense, the most allowed by Alabama in a game this season.  The previous high was 492 yards by Tennessee in 51-43 five, overtime loss at Bryant-Denny Stadium on Oct. 25th.  The Tigers ran for 249 yards (204 by C. Williams) and passed for 270 yards (18-for-27, 2 INTs) in the win over Alabama. 

*Auburn's 249 rushing yards are the second-most allowed by Alabama this year.  Arkansas ran for a season-high 289 yards and three TDs in a 34-31 double overtime win over Alabama on Sept. 27 in Tuscaloosa. 

*Campbell's 270 passing yards are also the second-most allowed by Alabama this year.  Tennessee's Casey Clausen threw for 283 yards earlier this year against the Tide.

*Alabama's offense failed to score in the first half for the second consecutive week.  The Crimson Tide trailed 10-0 last week at home to third-ranked LSU.  Alabama also did not score in the first half of last year's game against Auburn in Bryant-Denny Stadium. Entering the lockerroom at halftime, Alabama had managed only five points in the last six quarters, including a 27-3 loss last week to LSU.

*After going six quarters without a touchdown, Alabama opened the second half with a bang as sophomore Brandon Brooks (Montevallo) returned the opening kickoff 96 yards for a touchdown, cutting the Auburn lead to 18-9 just 15 seconds into the third quarter.

*Brooks 96-yard kickoff return is the first of his Alabama career and the first kickoff return by either team in an Alabama-Auburn game since George Ranager scored on a 102-yard kickoff return in the third quarter in 1969.

*Brooks' kickoff return is the fourth by Alabama against Auburn, joining Butch Wilson (1962), Ray Ogden (1964) and Ranager (1969).

*In addition, Brooks 96-yard kickoff return is the third-longest scoring play by either team in the Alabama-Auburn series.

*Brooks' kickoff return is the first by Alabama since Shaun Alexander's 76-yard kickoff return against Louisiana Tech on Sept. 18, 1999 at Legion Field.  In addition, Brooks' return ties for the ninth longest in Alabama history.

*Shaud Williams scored his first rushing TD since the Miss. State game with a six-yard TD run on the Tide's next possession, cutting the Auburn lead to 18-15 with 9:06 left in the third quarter.

*Alabama quarterback Brodie Croyle (Rainbow City) completed 13 of 29 passes for 180 yards in the loss to Auburn, with one touchdown and two interceptions.  He has thrown at least one TD pass in eight of his 10 games this season.  Croyle has also thrown at least one interception in six straight games.

*Junior Ray Hudson (Bonifay, Fla.) returned after a one-game absence and accounted for 105 yards rushing and receiving against the Tigers.  Hudson had six rushes for 23 yards and caught four passes for 82 yards in the loss.

*Senior Dre Fulgham (Montevallo) also added three catches for 58 yards in the loss.

*Alabama game captains for the Auburn game were the 2003 senior class, represented by tailback Shuad Williams (offense), defensive back Charles Jones (defense) and receiver Lance Taylor (special teams).

*Alabama senior Matt Lomax (Saraland) made his first career start for the Crimson Tide at tight end in tonight's game with Auburn.  Lomax changed uniform numbers for the Auburn game, changing from No. 69 to No. 89 for tonight's game, while playing his new position.

*Alabama also started three receivers in the Auburn game as Triandos Luke (Phenix City), Dre Fulgham (Montevallo) and Zach Fletcher (Moulton) earned starting assignments.  With the three-wide formation, Alabama fullback Tim Castille (Birmingham) did not start tonight's game.

*Alabama senior defensive tackle Anthony Bryant (Newbern) recorded his first career safety on the Tigers' next possession as he stopped Carnell Williams for a one-yard loss in the end zone.  The safety was the first by Alabama since Sept. 9, 2000 when the Crimson Tide recorded two safeties in 28-10 win against Vanderbilt at Legion Field.  Alabama's Kindal Moorehead also recorded a safety here at Jordan-Hare Stadium when he sacked Ben Leard in the end zone in 1999.

*Alabama tight end Clint Johnston (Wetumpka) returned to action against Auburn after missing the Miss. State and LSU games with injuries.

*Alabama strong safety Roman Harper (Prattville) had two big defensive plays for the Crimson Tide in the first half, keeping his team in the game as Auburn appeared to be headed for touchdowns.  Harper recovered a fumble by Auburn tight end Cooper Wallace at the UA 10-yard line after Wallace hauled in a 37-yard catch. Harper's fumble recovery was his first of the season and second of his Alabama career.

*On the Tigers next possession, Harper intercepted a Jason Campbell pass in the end zone, stopping another AU scoring threat.  It was Harper's first career interception.

*Senior Charles Jones (Waynesboro, Ga.) added an interception on the first play of the fourth quarter when he picked off a Campbell pass in the end zone.  Jones has four of Alabama's 10 interceptions this season.

*Senior Lance Taylor (Citronelle) caught his first career touchdown pass with 1:03 left in the game to pull Alabama to within 28-23.  Taylor's TD reception came after the intended receiver Triandos Luke tipped the pass into Taylor's hands for the score.

*The annual Alabama-Auburn game is not the final regular-season game for the Crimson Tide football team.  The final game takes place next week on the island of Ohau as Alabama faced Hawai'i in Honolulu in a nationally televised game by ESPN (6:47 p.m. CT).  The 2003 season marks just the fourth time since the series was renewed that the Auburn game has not been Alabama's final regular season game. The list includes:

Dec. 14, 1963 --  Alabama 17, Miami 12 (Miami)
Dec.   1, 1988 --  Alabama 30, Texas A&M 10 (College Station)
Nov. 30, 2002 --  Alabama 21, Hawai'i 16 (Honolulu)
Nov. 29, 2003 --  Alabama at Hawai'i (Honolulu)

 


 

 

     
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