(1) Alabama - 30, (13) Auburn - 12
November 19, 2016
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The No. 1 ranked University of Alabama
football team closed out its regular season with a 30-12
home win over No. 13 Auburn in front of a sold-out 101,821
crowd in Bryant-Denny Stadium.
Alabama running back Damien Harris (34) scores a 17-yard
touchdown in the first quarter during the Iron Bowl
at Bryant Denny Stadium, Saturday, Nov. 26, 2016.
Photo Credit - Crystal Vander/Decatur Daily
As a team, Alabama covered 501 yards in total offense on 81
plays while the Crimson Tide defense held Auburn to 182
yards on 45 plays, including just one first down in the
first half and seven total. Freshman quarterback Jalen
Hurts through for 286 yards on 27-of-36 passing, with two
interceptions and two touchdowns. Hurts also scored a
Senior kicker Adam Griffith drove home all three of his
field goal attempts and three extra points. Sophomore
running back Bo Scarbrough led the team in rushing with
90 rumbling yards on 17 carries. Junior wide receiver
ArDarius Stewart notched a 100-plus yard receiving day,
tallying 127 yards and a touchdown on 10 catches.
Senior linebacker Reuben Foster and junior linebacker
Shaun Dion Hamilton both accounted for eight stops on
the day, with Hamilton also grabbing an interception to
stymie Auburn's most productive drive of the second half.
Senior linebacker accounted for six tackles, including a
sack for a loss of five yards.
Alabama chose to receive the opening kickoff. Hurts opened
the game with a 12-yard completion to wide receiver Gehrig
Dieter, but the Tide gained only six more yards after that,
all on a Damien Harris rush up the middle, forcing a punt.
Auburn's Stephen Roberts took JK Scott's 36-yard punt on
the run at the Tiger 21 and raced past the pursuit 58 yards
to the Tide 21. Scott shoved Roberts out of bounds to save
a touchdown. From there, Auburn quarterback Jeremy Johnson
threw two incompletions and a shovel pass from quarterback
John Franklin to fullback Chandler Cox lost three yards,
bringing placekicker Daniel Carlson on for a 42-yard field
goal attempt, which was good, giving Auburn a 3-0 lead with
12:31 left in the first quarter.
After a touchback on the kickoff, Alabama moved 64 yards
on 13 plays before finishing off the drive with a 29-yard
field goal by placekicker Adam Griffith to even the score
at 3-3 with 5:40 left in the first quarter. Hurts opened
the drive with a seven-yard completion to wide receiver
Trevon Diggs, followed by a one-yard run by Harris. Hurts
lost four yards on the next play before picking up 17 yards
and a first down with a rush up the middle. Harris was
stopped for no gain before Hurts connected with Stewart
on a shovel pass that picked up 19 yards and another first
down. An eight-yard pass from Hurts to wide receiver Cam
Sims gained eight yards before an offside penalty on Auburn
gave Alabama another first down. Hurts flipped the ball to
O.J. Howard in traffic for a 9-yard gain before the drive
stalled at the Tiger 11, bringing out Griffith to tie the
game with the field goal.
Auburn gained one yard on its next drive, going
three-and-out and punting the ball 39 yards to the Tide
37, where Alabama's Trevon Diggs returned the kick eight
yards to set up the Tide on its 45-yard line. A one-yard
shovel pass from Hurts to Stewart opened the Tide drive
before the two connected for a 39-yard completion on a
crossing pattern. Hurts then found Harris for a 17-yard
touchdown pass. Griffith made good on the extra-point
attempt, putting the Tide on top, 10-3, with 2:49 left
in the first period.
After moving three yards in three plays, Auburn punted
the ball 38 yards to the Tide 34 where Diggs caught the
ball, fumbled it, picked it up and lost eight yards back
to the UA 26. During the return, Alabama's Tony Brown
was called for targeting and ejected from the game. The
ball was placed on the Tide 13-yard line. Hurts opened
the drive with a seven-yard completion to Stewart before
Harris carried for 12 yards to the Tide 32 before Hurts
gained three yards on a quarterback draw to end the quarter.
On the first play of the second quarter, pass by Hurts
was intercepted by Auburn defensive back Daniel Thomas,
giving Auburn the ball on the Tide 41-yard line. Auburn
moved the ball six yards following the turnover, before
Carlson kicked a 52-yard field goal through the uprights
to narrow Alabama's lead to 10-6 with 13:38 left in the
half. Alabama went three-and-out on its next possession.
The Tide defense then forced the Tigers into a
three-and-out. Following the Auburn punt, the Tide
started its next drive on its own 19-yard line with
10:03 left in the half.
After moving 12 yards on its first three plays of the
drive, Alabama picked up big yardage on back-to-back
plays, including a pass from Stewart to Howard that
gained 12 yards and a 20-yard rush by Harris to the Tiger
37. The drive was snuffed out when Hurts was intercepted
by Thomas on the Tiger 30. Thomas returned the pick 29
yards to the Tide 41 before Dieter brought him down.
On first down, Auburn gained 13 yards to the Tide 23 on
a Kerryon Johnson rush. He rushed for three more yards on
the next play before Jeremy Johnson picked up eight yards
on back-to-back passes, first to wide receiver Jason Smith
and then to wide receiver Eli Stove. On fourth down from
the Tide 22, Auburn sent out its field goal unit and
Carlson converted from 39 yards out to push the score to
Alabama 10, Auburn 9 at the 3:30 mark of the second quarter.
Starting on its 34, Alabama opened the next possession
with two rushes by Harris which totaled two yards. Hurts
then unloaded a 25-yard pass to wide receiver Calvin
Ridley to the Tiger 39 and a first down. Hurts followed
that with a 13-yard toss to Howard for another first down.
Hurts then scrambled for nine yards to the Tiger 17.
Scarbrough came in and rushed for four yards and a first
down at the Tiger 13. Alabama managed three more yards on
another Scarbrough rush before Griffith came on and made
a 25-yard field goal, putting Alabama up, 13-9, with 16
seconds remaining in the half.
Auburn downed the ball on the next offensive play, ending
the first half.
At the half, Alabama had gained 263 yards of total offense
on 44 plays while Auburn had managed 31 yards on 20
offensive plays. Hurts was 18-of-25 passing in the first
half for 182 yards and a touchdown with two interceptions.
Harris led` all rushers with 39 yards on seven carries
while Stewart led all receivers with 83 yards on eight
receptions, including a long of 39. For Auburn, Jeremy
Johnson was 3-of-9 passing for seven yards in the first
half with Smith leading the Tigers with one reception for
five yards. Kerryon Johnson was Auburn's leading rusher
at the half with 19 yards on three carries.
Auburn started the second half with the ball and a
three-and-out drive that included a three-yard rush by
Kerryon Johnson, an incomplete pass and a five-yard sack
of Jeremy Johnson by Alabama linebacker Ryan Anderson. A
41-yard punt gave Alabama the ball on its 43 yard-line.
Tide running back Bo Scarbrough opened the Alabama
possession with a one-yard rush before busting out over
the left end for 20 yards, giving Alabama a first down
on the Tiger 36. Another six-yard run by Scarbrough led
to a six-yard pass from Hurts to Ridley for another first
down. Scarbrough ran four yards to the Tiger 20, moving
the Tide into the red zone. Hurts then connected with
Howard for 14 yards to the Auburn six-yard line, bringing
up first-and-goal. Hurts picked up two on first down
before slashing to the right pylon, scoring on a four-yard
run to notch his 12th rushing touchdown of the season.
Griffith's extra point was good and Alabama led, 20-9,
with 9:58 left in the third quarter.
Auburn picked up its second first down of the game on
the first play of its second drive of the half, when
Jeremy Johnson completed a slant pass to Will Hastings
for a gain of 27 yards to the Tide 48. It picked up
another first down when a pair of Johnson rushes, the
first by Kerryon for six yards and the second by Jeremy
for four, moved the chains. A three-yard pick up by
Kerryon Johnson, followed by a pair of incomplete passes
by Jeremy Johnson, brought out Carlson and the Auburn
field goal unit. Carlson's kick from 52 yards out was
no good, wide left, giving Alabama the ball on the Tide
36 with 8:20 left in the third.
After a five-yard offside penalty by Auburn started the
Tide drive, Scarbrough bulled his way for 15 yards to the
Tiger 44. From there, Alabama gained five yards on three
plays, bringing up fourth-and-four on the Tiger 38. Hurts
found Stewart with a 38-yard sideline pass that Stewart
took into the end zone, turning up field to leave a
defender flying before evading a tackler at the Auburn
5 before reaching the end zone. Griffith's point-after
kick was good, and Alabama moved ahead, 27-9, with 5:16
left in the third period.
John Franklin came in at quarterback for the Tigers and
moved the ball 65 yards on nine plays, eating 3:05 off
the clock and bring out Carlson for another field goal
attempt, which was accurate from 27 yards. The big play
of the drive was a 55-yard Franklin to Eli Stove pass
that moved the Tigers to the Alabama 12-yard line. The
Tigers managed two more yards before Carlson made his
way onto the field.
Alabama had the ball at its 30-yard line to open the
fourth quarter after moving 11 yards on three plays to
earn a first down to close the third quarter. Running
back Josh Jacobs broke free for a 26-yard run to the
Tiger 44, then ate up another big chunk of real estate
by hauling in a 30-yard pass from Hurts that reached the
Auburn 14. Three straight plays for no gain brought out
Griffith, who knocked home a 34-yard field goal, pushing
the score to Alabama 30, Auburn 12, with 12:46 left in the
Auburn's final possession began with another big Franklin
to Stove hook up, moving the Tigers 30 yards to the Tide 45.
The Tigers finally had momentum going in a drive when
linebacker Shaun Dion Hamilton intercepted a pass by Cox
on the Alabama five-yard line, ending the drive. The Tide
proceeded to devour the final nine minutes of the game
with 15 plays that gained 58 yards, stringing together
four first downs on the march.
Undefeated Alabama enters the postseason next Saturday,
December 3, by facing the Florida Gators in Atlanta, Ga.,
in the Southeastern Conference Championship Game. The game
will be televised by CBS beginning at 3 p.m. CT at the