By Barry Allen
UA Media Relations
AUBURN, Ala. ?? University of Alabama quarterback Andrew Zow etched his name in Iron Bowl lore in leading the Crimson Tide to a convincing 31-7 win over arch-rival Auburn at Jordan-Hare Stadium on November 17, 2001.
Zow completed 22 of 29 passes for 221 yards and two touchdowns in leading the Tide to its second straight win on the Plains. His 45-yard touchdown pass to Jason McAddley just before halftime gave his team a lead they would never relinquish and set the stage for the Tide’s most lopsided Iron Bowl win since 1973.
The running game, anchored by running backs Santonio Beard and Ahmaad Galloway, was just a lethal as Zow’s right arm. Beard and Galloway combined for 326 rushing yards and two touchdowns in the win as both topped the 100-yard mark, joining Johnny Davis and Jeff Rutledge as the only UA backs to rush for 100 yards in the same game against Auburn. Davis (104) and Rutledge (102) combined for 206 yards in a 48-21 win over the Tigers in 1977.
Beard ran 20 times for 199 yards and two touchdowns, while Galloway added 14 carries for 127 yards. The Crimson Tide ran the ball 44 times for 328 yards and finished with 549 yards of total offense.
Auburn’s offense struggled, especially after the Tigers lost Carnell Williams with a shoulder injury on the first drive of the game. The Tigers’ ground game never found its footing and managed only 41 yards on 28 rushing attempts. Ronnie Brown led all AU rushers with 41 yards on 15 attempts.
Daniel Cobb completed 9 of 17 passes for 139 yards before being replaced in the second half by Jason Campbell, who completed all seven passes for 92 yards.
The Crimson Tide defense recorded five sacks and forced one turnover in the win. Waine Bacon and Saleem Rasheed had 11 tackles each, while Jarret Johnson had nine stops, including two TFLs and one sack, three pressures, one fumble caused and one pass breakup.
After a scoreless first quarter that saw both teams miss a field goal, Alabama scored on its next three possessions, including the game’s first touchdown in the second quarter after a long, sustained drive.
The Crimson Tide drove 88 yards in 12 plays for its first score of the game. Beard capped the drive with a 5-yard run and Neal Thomas kicked the extra point to put the Tide in front, 7-0, with 5:25 left in the first half.
Auburn answered on its next possession and tied the game at 7-7. Tim Carter’s 43-yard kickoff return set the Tigers up at the Alabama 49-yard line. Five plays later, Brown scored on a 5-yard run and Damon Duval’s extra point tied the game with 2:56 left in the half.
After the Auburn kickoff sailed through the end zone, Alabama took over at its own 20 and scored in eight plays. Zow completed three straight passes and Beard picked up another first down with an 11-yard run. Alabama then faced a third-and-nine from the Tigers’ 45-yard line following an incomplete pass and one-yard run by Zow. On third down, Zow hit a wide open McAddley for a 45-yard scoring strike and Thomas’s extra point made it 14-7 with 45 seconds left in the half.
Alabama got the ball to start the second half and quickly put the game out of reach in two plays. Following a touchback, Alabama took over on its own 20 and Zow immediately hit Freddie Milons for a 33-yard gain to the AU 47. Beard ran over right guard on the next play and covered the final 47 yards for the touchdown. Thomas made the extra point and the Tide held a 21-7 lead just 21 seconds into the second half.
After an exchange of punts, Alabama got the ball back with 4:41 left in the third quarter at its own 8-ayrd line and began a 13-play, 92-yard drive that extended the lead to 21 points early in the fourth quarter. The Tide converted a pair of third downs on the drive and even picked up a first down on second-and-24 from its own 15 when Galloway broke loose over right tackle for 25 yards to the Tide 40. Galloway added another 20-yard run on the drive and Beard picked up 11 to give the Tide a first-and-goal at the AU 9. Beard lost one yard as the quarter ended. On the first play of the fourth quarter, Zow hit Terry Jones, Jr., with a 10-yard touchdown pass as the Tide increased its lead to 28-7 with 14:55 left in the game.
After an Auburn punt, Beard ripped off a 54-yard run to the AU 14-yard line. The drive stalled and Thomas connected on a 26-yard field goal to make the score 31-7 with 11:27 left in the game.
Auburn responded with backup quarterback Jason Campbell in the game and drove to a first-and-goal at the Alabama 6-yard line. Johnson stuffed Brown for a 4-yard loss to the 10 on first down. On the next play, Johnson pressured Campbell and forced a fumble that was covered by Reggie Myles at the UA 26-yard line putting an exclamation point on the Tide’s win.