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SPECIAL COMMEMORATIVE ISSUE Special Commemorative Issue

Title

Title Pride of the

TIDE! Subtitle

Alabama Wins The 2012 BCS Championship.


P ri d e o f t h e

TIDE! Alabama Wins The 2012 BCS Championship

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www.rylinmedia.com Chairman of the Board: President: Editor-in-Chief: Chief Designer: Writer: Writer Writer: Editorial Assistant: Operations Director: Librarian: Web Master: Photo Editor: Photos Provided By:

Dr. Roger Herrin Phil Saran Tom Zenner Kelley Ellert Mike Rylander Cory Williams G Rockett Phillips Shonda Zenner Ryan Saran Beatrice Saran Maria LeMairie Lindsay Saran, Brent Herrin AP Images

To purchase additional copies go to www.rylinmedia.com For additional information contact Philsaran@rylinmedia.com UPC: 725274263486 ISSUE 08 ISBN: 978-1-4507-6690-6 All rights reserved. Except for use in a review, the reproduction or utilization of this work in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including: xerography, photocopying and recording, and in any information storage and retrieval system, is forbidden without written permission. This book is available in quantity at special discounts for your group or organization. For further information, contact the publisher. Printed in the United States

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Game of the Century BAMA vs. LSU, Part 1

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N! ason O I e T INA ular S

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ets stiny G n atio n of De d n Fou Seaso e h T ra o f t Se

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Iron Bowl 2011

Bama Buries Auburn!

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Crimson Pride!

Alabama Beats LSU in the BCS Championship


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FOREWORD

Alabama football is an institution. The 2011 installment of the Crimson Tide was an absolute inspiration. When tragedy struck Tuscaloosa in April, a unifying presence in the community was this team. And it was at that point that the Tide went from being potentially a very good team with Championship potential, to a collection of men on a mission. The mission was winning the BCS Championship, and in the process they laid the foundation for a modern-day dynasty that sees no end in sight. This season was about domination. Has there been a better defense ever assembled in college football than what we witnessed for over four months? It was about extremely talented players, like Trent Richardson and Dont’a Hightower, playing to their potential and above it, showing what true leadership is all about. And it was most certainly about perseverance, as the Tide provided the hope for a community it desperately needed to rebuild. It’s too easy to say that the Tide was just a team of destiny, however. The road to glory was too tough, the obstacles too daunting, and the sacrifice too great to place the credit anywhere other than where it belongs. With an amazing collection of players and coaches, who would settle for absolutely nothing less than being remembered for being the true definition of team, and the ultimate display of what being a champion is all about. Congrats to the 2012 BCS Champs. Enjoy the book.

Tom Zenner @tomzenner Editor in Chief Rylin Media

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The Foundation Gets Set for a

Season of Destiny 2011 Season Outlook

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Despite a moderately disappointing 10-3 season in 2010, Alabama was ranked No. 2 in AP’s pre-season college football poll. At most universities this is an occasion for champagne-cork-popping. Not so fast.

This was not just your basic FBS program. This was Alabama. The crème de la crème in the SEC and nationally. Any self-respecting Bama fan envisions themselves watching a team in the hunt for a title every single season. But, there was something foreboding and dark about this season’s launch.

caloosa, leaving a six-mile path of complete devas-

First, let’s cut to the chase. Bama fans had five expectations for 2012: • Avenge the loss at South Carolina. • Avenge the loss at LSU. • Get retribution for the excruciating, one-point heartbreaker against Auburn. •Win the SEC Championship. •Challenge for a National Championship. Expectations were high, the buzz was positive, and the Tide was ready to ROLL! Let’s not forget, though, Alabama was the pre-season number one ranked team the previous season and despite a load of first round draft picks, ultimately disappointed fans on the field. But that’s not the beginning of the story. Expectations are funny. One thing upon which you can almost always depend; things don’t always progress as planned. Expectations are often unmet. Dings to a shoulder, torn ligaments in need of repair, off the field conduct issues. These are all part of the landscape in the preparation for a major college football season. The coaching staff and team that is most resilient generally fares better against such adversity. But no matter how elite your status, no matter how daunting your defense, no matter how impactful the lingering presence of the Alabama Crimson Tide football culture, there was one expectation in no one’s mind. What happened shortly after the spring game on April 27, 2011, was absolutely impossible to predict. The wrath of Mother Nature. An EF-4 level tornado rampaged through Tus10 Pride of the Tide!

tation. It’s reported it to be the deadliest tornado in Alabama history, as over 40 people were killed and thousands were treated for injuries. It barely missed a direct hit on the campus, and spared Bryant-Denny stadium, but the terror was not missed in the hearts of the 20,000 people in its immediate path. Coach Saban and his staff stood solemnly before the players two days later, and reminded his team that the Bama community is with them in the best of times, and they as a team, should be with the community in the worst of times. With those words, the Crimson Tide rolled in an unprecedented way. The football players and studentathletes from all the athletic departments became a major cog in the relief effort, helping to restore the community with hope. In the context of this tragedy, the home opener with Kent State became much more than the season kick-off. The expectations had changed from Xs and Os, poll rankings, and championships to a demonstration of community survival, rebuilding, and relief aid


needed for years to come. As you may imagine, the aid poured in even more, from the Tide faithful. The heartache from the affected community will be there forever; but, the spirit of the Alabama Crimson Tide culture was inspirational. Now…football. The pre-season rankings had shown the Tide much love with their high rankings, but there remained plenty of reasons for concern in Tuscaloosa. Heisman Trophy winner Mark Ingram was gone. Wide receiver Julio Jones was off to the NFL as well. It was the same with Marcell Dareus and James Carpenter. All of them were first round picks in the 2011 NFL Draft. That was the reason to be nervous. But the Tide had every reason to be optimistic, replacing Ingram with Trent Richardson, who had shown the ability

and talent to hoist the Heisman himself. Richardson is in a unique and promising situation. He backed up the only running back to be selected in the first round of last year’s draft, Mark Ingram. He patiently waited, with flashes of brilliance in relief, and now the job is HIS! And, the expectations are huge. Richardson is just a junior and with limited play filling in for Ingram he’s rambled for nearly 1500 yards, caught 39 passes, and scored 14 touchdowns. The book on Trent is he has speed enough to beat the backers to the edge, and pull away in a cloud of dust once he’s in the secondary. The former prep phenom had already lived up to expectations in a supporting role. Could he be even better than Ingram? We’d begin to find out. Now, replacing quarterback Greg McElroy is 11


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another story entirely. Saban played his cards close to the vest regarding who’ll be filling those shoes. The problem is the options are young and inexperienced. One sophomore and three freshmen will challenge for that spot, with either AJ McCarron or Phillip Sims expected to win it. For the past three years, Julio Jones was the glue of the Alabama receiving corps. He was a dominating presence at his position, not only known for his receiving ability, but for his blocking prowess as well. He special skill sets earned him a first round pick by the Atlanta Falcons. So, how do you replace a guy that netted nearly 2500 yards receiving and 17 scores? Well, you don’t. You simply salute him, enjoy the memories, and wish him well at the next level. Returning starters Darius Hanks and Marquis 12 Pride of the Tide!

Maze each have plenty of experience. Brandon Gibson hopes this is his year. Newcomers Kenny Bell, Keiwone Malone and others are hoping to make a name for themselves, and Bell led all receivers in the first spring scrimmage with 7 catches for 89 yards and two touchdowns. There was also some excitement simmering around junior college transfer Duron Carter, whose father is eight-time Pro Bowl receiver Chris Carter. Without question, the strength of this chapter of the Tide is defense. Returning ten starters, among them linebacker Dont’a Hightower and safety Mark Barron, this unit is poised to dominate the SEC this year. Just ask the Tide’s Capitol One Bowl opponent in 2011, Michigan State. The terms “clinic” and “woodshed” come to mind. Allowing the Big Ten champions only seven points, it appeared that kind of dominance would continue on SEC foes in the fall of 2012.


There might have been a logical reason for last year’s 10-3 disappointment. Being the pre-season top pick in some polls created some pressures all it’s own. There’s an old saying, heavy is the head that wears the crown. In order to maintain that lofty perch, a team’s season simply must go perfectly. When does that happen, right? There was a scheduling issue that needs to be noted. In 2010 Alabama faced six opponents that were coming off an open week prior to playing the Crimson Tide. Interestingly, Alabama was defeated in three of those games. The theory being, the program with the extra week preparation has a distinct advantage. Whether you buy into that argument or not is your choice, but those are the simple facts. In the 2011 season the Tide would only be competing against three teams that are coming off an open week prior to playing them, which is still the most in

the Southeastern Conference. So, let’s look at the overall picture. The returning Bama defense is not only solid, but imposing. The offense has stars to replace and holes to fill. What kind of team chemistry will this create? How long will it take the replacements to gel? How long will it take the offense to catch up with their defensive counterparts? How patient will the Tide faithful and Coach Saban remain if things don’t go well early? But all of those question marks were simply minor challenges. Nothing could compare to what everyone in Tuscaloosa experienced on April 27, 2011. That was real life. And the 2011 Alabama football team was bound and determined to help the rebuilding process for an entire community by having a memorable season that everyone could take pride in. It was now time to kick it off.

Roll Tide!

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2011 Alabama Crimson Tide Regular Season Schedule September 3

vs

Kent State

September 10

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#23 Penn State

September 17

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North Texas

September 24

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#14 Arkansas

October 1

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#12 Florida

October 8

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Vanderbilt

October 15

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Ole Miss

October 22

vs

Tennessee

November 5

vs

#1 LSU

November 12

@

Mississippi State

November 19

vs

Georgia Southern

November 26

@

Auburn

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Tide Talk

We are excited about the challenges and opportunities that this team has this year. By every indication that we’ve seen in the first couple of practices, we have a lot of guys that are committed to a high standard. We obviously, like every team, have some question marks and challenges. Some players on the team need to take advantage of those opportunities created by those questions and challenges and how that all works out will go a long way in determining where this team can go. It’s not really about expectations. It’s really about how many guys go and do their job on a consistent basis versus how many blinking lights we have of guys who don’t seem to be able to get it right, whether it’s personally, academically or athletically. All of those things contribute to the competitive character and consistency that you can go out and play with.

- Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban 15


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Tide Talk

It will be very exciting to see him start being that main back and get most of the carries. I don’t think he’ll disappoint at all. (On upcoming season for Trent Richardson)

- Alabama Tight End Michael Williams 16 Pride of the Tide!


CHAMPS FACTS All About the Helmet - The Alabama football Helmet is sporting

more than crimson in 2011. The Crimson Tide wore a houndstooth pattern decal and a number 77 decal on helmets this season. The houndstooth decal represents the memory of the devastation created by the tornado that hit the Tuscaloosa community on April 27, and the 77 decal is in memory of the late Aaron Douglas, a Tide offensive lineman who passed away in May. 17


DOMINATION! Alabama Crimson Tide 2011 Season

11 Wins - 1 Loss 18

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Kent State pg.22 Penn State pg.24 North Texas pg.26 Arkansas pg.28 Florida pg.30 Vanderbilt pg.32 Ole Miss pg.34 Tennessee pg.36 Special Section Game of the Century: BAMA vs LSU - Part 1 pg.38 Mississippi St. pg.44 Georiga Southern

pg.46

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Offensive Statistics RUSHING

Carries

Yards

TD

T. Richardson

263

1,583

20

Eddie Lacy

84

649

7

Jalston Fowler

56

395

4

PASSING

Comp-Att

Yards

TD Int

AJ McCarron

196-294

2,400

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RECEIVING

Receptions

Yards

TD

Marquis Maze

56

627

1

Trent Richardson

27

327

3

Brad Smelley

27

317

4

Darius Hanks

21

270

1

Kenny Bell

16

229

2

Michael Williams

14

181

2

DeAndrew Wright 14

151

2

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Defensive Statistics Tackles Interceptions Fumbles Recovered Dont’a Hightower

81

1

-

Mark Barron

66

2

1

Courtney Upshaw

45

1

-

Nico Johnson

43

1

1

DeQuan Menzie

37

1

1

Robert Lester

36

2

-

C.J. Mosley

36

-

-

Vinnie Sunseri

31

-

1

Damion Square

30

-

-

Dre Kirkpatrick

26

-

-

DeMarcus Milliner 26

3

-

Quinton Dial

24

-

-

Trey Depriest

23

-

-

Josh Chapman

22

-

-

Jerrell Harris

22

-

-

Jesse Williams

22

-

-

Nick Gentry

20

-

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NATION’S #1 OVERALL TEAM DEFENSE 21


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GAME #1 - Alabama vs Kent State

Finally! It’s here. Opening day of the 2011 season. But just over four months earlier, on April 27th, there was no talk of championships. There was no talk of Heisman Trophies. There was no talk of football, even. People just wished to restore their lives, as the tornado-ravaged Tuscaloosa area experienced and endured a horror most would like to forget. But this day is different. On this day a sense of normalcy had been restored as another powerful, highly ranked, championship-caliber Alabama Crimson Tide football team was taking the field. Finally! Some relief. A lot of pre-season talk had been about Coach Nick Saban, and that in some regards he was a changed man, deeply affected by the losses in the community from the horrific storm. If that were the case, you would think he’d be a gracious host to his alma mater, the Kent State Golden Flashes. Uh. No, not really. The Crimson Tide, under the controls of firsttime starting quarterback A.J. McCarron, dropped 21 points on Kent in the first fifteen minutes of play. Bama fans screamed their delight as the Tide rolled to a 48-7 trouncing of the over-matched Flashes from the MAC. This would be a great day for everyone to celebrate. Trent Richardson did what he’s supposed to do, rush for touchdowns. He got three of them. And a huge surprise for the Bama faithful were the backup running backs, Eddie Lacey and Jalston Fowler. Both were impressive off the bench, with over 120 yards between them on just

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12 carries, and each scored a touchdown. Perhaps, the most significant discovery was the fact that A. J. McCarron proved to be very capable of running the offense, as he threw for 226 yards with one touchdown. The defense was, in a word, dominating, as everyone expected them to be. Now, granted, Kent State is a team that won only four games in the MAC last year, but still, the Bama D showed flashes of the staggering dominance that would become the norm throughout the 2011 season. The big question was this; did Alabama live up to the hype on this opening day? Did they look like the second best team in the land, even though they played against an inferior opponent? It was a little too early to say for sure, but one thing was certain. A true test was around the corner, as a trip to Happy Valley was on deck to face the highly ranked Nittany Lions of Penn State. Little would people know that by the end of the season these two storied programs would be on opposite ends of the football world. One crowned as BCS Champions yet again, the other trying to dig out from the sorriest mess of a scandal the sport has ever seen.


September 3rd Kent State – 7 #2 Alabama – 48

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GAME #2 - Alabama at Penn State

For the 15th time, traditional non-conference rivals Alabama and Penn State squared off, and like usual, both teams were ranked. The Crimson Tide came in ranked third in the country, while Penn State was number 25. In week number two of the season, Bama was facing their first real test in front of over 110,000 partisan fans. The folks in Happy Valley could not have been too pleased to see the Bama defense roll into town. Led by linebackers Dont’a Hightower and Trey DePriest, along with safety Mark Barron, this punishing Alabama D held Joe Paterno’s team to just over 100 yards rushing, and only 250 total yards. The team in white was fast, powerful, and completely in sync, and it was very clear gaining yards, let alone scoring points against them was going to take herculean efforts in the 2011 season. Despite dropping a spot in the rankings the first week down to number three, the Tide did indeed roll over their overmatched Big Ten opponent on this day. Trent Richardson continued to prove that the Heisman hype was le-

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git, as he scored two touchdowns and ran for 116 yards, and Eddie Lacey added 88 yards on just 11 carries. Senior safety Mark Barron was named the Jim Thorpe Defensive Back of the Week for his performance against Penn State, as he totaled seven tackles and had an interception and fumble recovery. Both his takeaways put the halt on Penn State drives that went deep into Bama territory. It was a good win. There was certainly a talent discrepancy on the field, but Happy Valley is not an easy place for visiting teams to win in, let alone dominate. On the road to a BCS Championship there can be no flat tires along the way, and the Tide headed back to Tuscaloosa with a 27-11 win, and an upcoming game with a North Texas opponent that it would be important not to look beyond.


September 10th #3 Alabama – 27 Penn State – 11

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GAME #3 - Alabama vs North Texas

It is very rare, if not nearly impossible for a Nick Saban coached team to enter a game unfocused or ill-prepared. It just doesn’t happen. And it would not on this day either. Earlier in the week Alabama had risen back up to the number two spot in the polls, and it was important to show that the move up was warranted. This was the fourth time that North Texas was on the Alabama schedule, and the fourth lopsided score that would be attached to it. Trent Richardson ran hard, and gobbled up 169 yards on the day. When he wasn’t gouging the Mean Green defense Eddie Lacey was, as he picked up 163 yards, and together they combined for five touchdowns. One TD would have been enough to win in game three, as Bama shutout North Texas 41-0.

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Not a lot was learned on this day, but the most important aspect of it was there were no significant injuries, and SEC conference play was just one week away. Arkansas was coming to town in seven days, and the Hogs would bring with them the first real test Alabama would have to pass in this championship season.


September 17th North Texas – 0 #2 Alabama – 41

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GAME #4 - Alabama vs Arkansas

With three tune-ups out of the way, it was time to get down to business for the Alabama football and team and measure themselves against SEC competition. And the conference opener was a heavyweight matchup, as Arkansas came to Tuscaloosa with their wide-open passing attack and 14th ranking in the national polls. There was quite a tradition the Tide had been part of for almost two full decades, and everyone was hoping it would continue. Bama had won their last 19 straight SEC openers, dating all the way back to the 1992 season, including four times against Arkansas, but this season’s version of the Hogs was more dangerous than usual. Simply put, this looked like it was a battle of the best offense in the SEC against the most fearsome and lethal defense. The Bama D won that battle handily, and unfortunately for Arkansas, the Tide also had an almost unstoppable running back in Trent Richardson, who ran for 120 yards and caught a 61-yard touchdown pass in the romp. Also on display this day was an outstanding Alabama special teams unit too. All in all, it added up to a 38-14 spanking that clearly defined the pecking order in the SEC West. Dont’a Hightower described after the game the philosophy he and his defensive cohorts took to the field. “Well, we set out to establish that we were going against the best offense in

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the SEC and a lot of people were labeling us as the best defense in the SEC, so we wanted to go out and show people what we were capable of with all cylinders turning.” Mission accomplished. It was the kind of defensive performance Alabama fans got used to seeing from the 2009 championship team. The Tide had 10 tackles for loss, two interceptions, six pass breakups and four quarterback hurries. The downside: Linebacker C.J. Mosley sustained an elbow injury, and Saban said he would be questionable for next weekend’s game at No. 15 Florida. Tide quarterback AJ McCarron also played well in his SEC debut, completing 15 of 20 passes for 200 yards and two TD’s. Bama won on the scoreboard and box score, as Saban’s elite defense outclassed and dominated Bobby Petrino’s flashy passing game. So far, so good in the 2011 season. The Tide was riding high at 4-0, but coming up was a trip to The Swamp to face Florida, in what usually is a tough game.


September 24th #14 Arkansas– 14 #3 Alabama – 38

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GAME #5 - Alabama at Florida

There was an electric atmosphere in Gainesville, as Alabama faced Florida in a prime time game under the lights in The Swamp. Both the Gators and Tide were undefeated at 4-0, and there was some legitimate concern that Florida had team speed that even a dominating defense like Alabama’s might struggle with. The game started in ominous fashion for Nick Saban’s crew, as Florida QB Jon Brantley connected with Andre Debose for a perfectly executed 65-yard touchdown on the game’s very first play. Unfortunately for the Gators and their maniacal fans, that was the lone highlight of the night. The terms ‘woodshed’, and ‘beat down’ were certainly appropriate on this night, as the Tide completely shut Florida down from that point on. Trent Richardson blasted his way to the top of the list on the Heisman Trophy candidate stage, with his fourth straight 100-yard game, as he ran wild on the Gators for 181 yards and 2 touchdowns. Richardson was literally unstoppable, running with a passion and fury reminiscent of some of the great backs in college football history. And the All-American played with even more motivation since he grew up in the state of Florida. “This was very sweet because it was against Florida. I really wanted to play well in this game and help us get a win.” The game was literally over by halftime. If it were a boxing match the referee would have stopped the fight. The final score was

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38-10 Alabama, and it didn’t seem that close if you watched the game or were there. It was the worst home loss for Florida since LSU, coached by Saban, pounded the Gators 36-7 back in 2002. If you want to pick one stat from this game that told the story of the night consider that the Gators entered the game averaging 259 yards a game on the ground, but they finished with just 15. That is not a misprint. The Tide defense held Florida to 15 rushing yards. Even Coach Saban was impressed. “We did a really good job of not letting their speed outflank us. Those two guys (Florida runningbacks Rainey and Demps) are a handful. Miss a tackle on them and they’re out the door and gone.” Probably the most appropriate quote came after the game from new Florida coach Will Muschamp. “We got beat by a better team,” he said. Don’t worry Will. You weren’t the only opposing coach trying to pick up the pieces after getting steamrolled by the eventual BCS Champions in 2011.


October 1st #3 Alabama – 38 #12 Florida – 10

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GAME #6 - Alabama vs Vanderbilt

The March towards a BCS Championship was at the halfway point, as the Tide returned home to face Vanderbilt. You could almost sense that a slight letdown might be on the docket, considering the opponent, and considering the intensity of the last two games for Alabama. To a man, the Bama players and coaches would admit this was not the sharpest game they played, but when you’re talking about the obvious contrasting amounts of talent on the field, it really didn’t matter. “We obviously didn’t play our best football game, especially in the first half,” Tide coach Nick Saban admitted. “We didn’t have the mental energy and intensity that we like to have.” It really didn’t matter. AJ McCarron continued to grow as a starting quarterback, and passed for a career high 237 yards and four touchdowns. Trent Richardson rushed for 107 yards and a touchdown in his fifth straight 100yard effort for the Crimson Tide, which already

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has two shutouts, including this 34-0 pasting. There is no better coaching staff in the country when it comes to making halftime adjustments. Maybe the Tide needed a wakeup call. Maybe it was a pep talk. Most likely it was a stern tongue lashing, but whatever went on inside the home team’s locker room, it worked. Alabama scored touchdowns on its first three drives of the second half, the only miscue being a missed extra point. There were no surprises in this game. The better team won easily. Next up was what looked to be another game that if Alabama played to their potential, the outcome would not be anything to worry about.


October 8th Vanderbilt –0 #2 Alabama – 34

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GAME #7 - Alabama at Ole Miss

It was during this week in October when the first BCS rankings were released, and to say that the difference between Alabama and LSU at the top of the poll was miniscule would be an understatement. The Tigers eeked out the number one spot by a .0003 margin. How fitting, that two teams so close, in so many ways, would be able to prove who the kings of college football would be on the field. Oh by the way, Alabama played a football game this week too, traveling to Oxford to battle an Ole Miss team having one of their most disappointing seasons in history. Bama added to the Rebels misery, pounding them 52-7 and running up 615 yards of offense in the process. The 52 points was the most an Alabama team has posted in an SEC game in over 20 years. Maybe the most memorable moments of this game was provided by Trent Richardson. Once again, he rushed for a career high 183 yards, and left a lasting impression for Heisman voters with a brilliant 76-yard touchdown run that showcased his destructive power and speed. The Tide rushed for a whopping total of 389 yards, while the Bama defense held Ole Miss to just 28 yards on the ground. “Our offense, the more we run it the bet-

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ter we run it,” Alabama coach Nick Saban said. “We’re more like Joe Frazier than we are like (Muhammad) Ali. We have to pound it.” The humiliation was thorough for the Rebels, who suffered their worst loss since 1981. It was a mismatch everywhere you looked. On the scoreboard, on the field and on the sidelines. The Tide deserve a ton of credit for not focusing on anything but the task at hand, which is the mark of a true champion. But after this game, it was becoming quite clear that the showdown of the century that every fan couldn’t wait to see, was coming up soon. In three weeks, The Tide would host LSU, with the winner being in the express lane to New Orleans for the BCS Championship game. Just one more speed bump was in the way. A date in Tuscaloosa with Tennessee.


October 15th #2 Alabama – 52 Ole Miss – 7

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GAME #8 - Alabama vs Tenessee

To say things were rolling for the Crimson Tide at this point of the season is putting it mildly. For instance, the Tide had won their last eight games by 16 or more points. Bama was dominating the SEC statistical categories too, leading the conference in total offense, total defense, scoring offense and scoring defense. The Tide was averaging just under 40 points, and giving up less than seven per game. There was nothing you could point to that would lead a reasonable person to think there was any way the Tennessee Volunteers would have a Rocky Top prayer in this final tune-up for Alabama, before the game of the century. Did anyone truly think a Nick Saban team would have a letdown before the most important game of the year? Forget about it. “It was a little lackluster in the first half, which was a little concerning,” Saban said after the game. “There was a concern going into the game, and something we tried to fight all week in terms of guys being focused on what’s happening right now and not being concerned about the future. And challenging them to play and have respect for the team that they’re playing.” Just because it was lackluster, didn’t mean the outcome was ever in doubt. The first half had some of the same characteristics of other games this season for Bama, where the Tide did not start out as quickly as they would have liked

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to. But they made up for it in the second half. When the third quarter started, the Tide scored on its first five possessions. You want to know what the definition of domination is? Here you go; Alabama had either first downs or touchdowns on its first 10 plays of the second half, to bust open a 6-6 game. They outgained the Vols 280-41 in the second half, and the nation’s No. 1 defense didn’t allow a first down, and the Tide cruised to an easy 37-6 win. So, with the big rival out of the way, it was time to move on to the big game. Most of the 101,821 fans stuck around until the end of the game, happily starting up the “LSU” chants with a couple of minutes left, and roaring when the announcer mentioned the next game in two weeks. Coach Saban made a request after the game for everyone to “chill out” with the LSU buildup in the coming weeks. Even Saban had to know that there was no chance of that happening. Up next was an extra week of preparation, and then the epic clash with LSU.


October 22nd Tenessee – 6 #2 Alabama – 37

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Game of The CENTURY LSU vs BAMA: Part 1

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Bryant-Denney Stadium Tuscaloosa, Alabama November 5, 2011 39


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GAME #9 - Alabama vs LSU

If you asked either fan base during the week leading up to the epic clash between LSU and Alabama in Tuscaloosa who they thought had the better team, well, both Tide partisans and Tiger rooters would get defensive. Just like the two football teams on this memorable Saturday night. It was a hard-hitting, low scoring, mind blowing evening, where a made field goal was as valuable as a truckload of gold and a mistake on either side of the ball would be scrutinized and analyzed for weeks to come. LSU came into the game as the number one team in the country, and that’s how they came out of the game as well, as the Tide could not overcome the fact they missed multiple field goals and squandered another chance by throwing a goal line interception. The game wasn’t a thing of beauty, and in reality it created as many questions as it answered, but when the dust settled in overtime and the scoreboard read 9-6 LSU, the Tigers were in the express lane for New Orleans, and it was clear that Alabama was going to have to hitch a ride somehow. “When you get blown out, you’ve got lots of issues and problems,” Alabama coach Nick Saban said. “I don’t think anybody could watch that game and say Alabama doesn’t have a really good team and didn’t play a really good game. We just didn’t win.” It looked at times like the only thing stopping Bama from winning was themselves. They were able to move into scoring position on numerous occasions but too often came away without points. Meanwhile, LSU kicker Drew Alleman showcased a stellar Tiger special teams unit by drilling the winning 25-yard field goal in overtime, despite being

iced with a last second timeout and having to listen to 100,000 fans scream in his ears. “Before I went to bed last night, I was preparing for it,” Alleman said after the game. “It’s every kicker’s dream, and I got to live it.” There were about as many style points as real points in this game. Unless you were a fan of old-fashioned defense and ground-shaking hits, than there’s no doubt you couldn’t leave this game thinking anything other than without question, those were the two manliest D’s college football has seen in one season, maybe ever. Two ferocious defenses played as well as advertised. Alabama came in allowing just 6.9 points and 44.9 yards rushing per game, leading the nation in both categories, and the second-fewest passing yards. LSU wasn’t far behind in any of those areas. The Crimson Tide finished with 295 yards, while the Tigers won with just 239. “It didn’t go by the script,” LSU coach Les Miles said. “The key is to keep fighting, to find a way.” That’s exactly what the Tigers did on this memorable Saturday night. But just two months later the script had a chance to be re-written, and the Tide created a much happier ending. An ending where they proved that when given a second chance, you learn who the real number one team in the land is.

“We knew it was going to be a tough game. We knew it was going to be a hard fought game. It just came down to who executed on the chances that they had. They did.” - Alabama Linebacker Courtney Upshaw 40 Pride of the Tide!


November 5th #1 LSU– 9 (OT) #2 Alabama – 6

“We still have a great opportunity in front of us. That was a great team and our hat is off to them. They beat us tonight and at the same time we can’t control our destiny, but we can control what we do from here on out. If we continue to keep the foot on the pedal and get better, I think we have a chance to do something very, very special this season.” - Alabama Offensive Linemen William Vlachos 41


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Tide Talk

I actually think that was a heck of a football game. I’m really proud of the way our players competed in the game. I thought we played hard and physical and we played with a lot of toughness. It was a very physical game on both sides. We had a lot of opportunities that we didn’t take advantage of.

- Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban

Two very physical football teams played tonight. It definitely didn’t go by script. The most interesting thing is that you just have to keep fighting and finding a way to win. 42

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- LSU Head Coach Les Miles


CHAMPS FACTS The game marked the first #1 vs. #2 regular season matchup in SEC history. It marked the first time #1 and #2 faced off in the regular season since 2006. Heading into the game both teams had won all of their games by double-digits. The game marked the third time the two teams have faced off in the regular season while undefeated. The Alabama and LSU series has been played at 6 different sites, dating back to 1895. Nick Saban is now 2-4 in his career against LSU

I wouldn’t want to play them again. They’re a tough team. They’ve got good players and an outstanding coach. It was a great battle tonight. We gave the fans and the world a good show tonight. - LSU Safety Brandon Taylor

43


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GAME #10 - Alabama at Mississippi State

The Alabama football team quickly realized on this day that if they had any hopes of having a BCS Championship victory party, there would be absolutely no time for a pity party. There was business at hand, which is the best thing that could have happened for the Tide. The chance to get out of town, and back on the field, taking on Mississippi State in Starkville. The Tide leaned on their superstar runningback Trent Richardson to do most of the damage on offense, as the Heisman Trophy candidate rushed for 127 yards and a touchdown. The Bama defense did what it always does best, dominate, giving up just 131 total yards, as the Tide got back on track with a 24-7 win over the Bulldogs. “After a loss like last week, a win is the only medicine,” Richardson said after the game, and he could not have put it any better. It was clear it would take some luck and good fortune for Bama to get back into the BCS Championship picture, but it was definitely a possibility, and

44 Pride of the Tide!

the Tide played like they had a lot to gain. It was a workmanlike performance that got this win. Nothing sexy or fancy. Most of Richardson’s yards were hard-earned, but the beauty of this game was not found in the stat sheet. There’s no category for the size of a team’s heart, and the 2011 Alabama football team proved that theirs is as impressive as their talent and desire. A win is a win, and it was much needed on this day. It got the Tide back on track, and though it was still a little difficult to fully see ending up in New Orleans for a rematch with LSU, it was clearly enough of a possibility to motivate the Tide to beat another overmatched opponent and return to winning.


November 12th #4 Alabama – 24 Mississippi State– 7

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GAME #11 - Alabama vs Georgia Southern

The last home game in a near-perfect season was a day of celebration for the Crimson Tide football team. It was Senior Day in Tuscaloosa, and the opponent was Georgia Southern. Nick Saban had reminded his players before the game what was at stake on this day. The senior class could leave as the program’s winningest class, or be remembered for losing to Georgia State, and essentially killing their national championship hopes. And those title dreams were a definite reality again, thanks to the loss the previous night Oklahoma State suffered in Ames, Iowa, against Iowa State. “I told our players before any of this ever happened that a legacy of the seniors that have won 45 games here and won a national championship would completely get defined if we didn’t get everybody’s best effort in this game,” Saban said after the game. The Bama D faced a different type of challenge in this game, trying to stop the triple option of Georgia Southern, who ran for 302 yards against the nation’s best defense. So it was up to the Bama offense to carry the day, and assure the senior class went into the his-

46 Pride of the Tide!

tory books with 46 wins. AJ McCarron completed 14 of 19 passes for 190 yards and three TD’s, and the Tide got a score when Dont’a Hightower blocked a field goal that Dre Kirkpatrick scooped up, and raced 55 yards for a touchdown. It was the first time Alabama had scored on a blocked field goal since 2003. The Eagles didn’t even try to fake a passing game, only throwing the ball a total of five times. It was their wishbone style running game that gave the Tide defense fits, moving the ball the entire game, but fortunately staying out of the end zone enough for Bama to avoid embarrassment, and win 45-21. All that was left now was the Iron Bowl at Auburn. One more game, and one more chance to prove that they deserved a shot to call themselves national champions.


November 19th Georgia Southern – 21 #3 Alabama – 45

47


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2011 Regular Season September 3

vs

Kent State

W

48-7

September 10

@

#23 Penn State

W

27-11

September 17

vs

North Texas

W

41-0

September 24

vs

#14 Arkansas

W

38-14

October 1

@

#12 Florida

W

38-10

October 8

vs

Vanderbilt

W

34-0

October 15

@

Ole Miss

W

52-7

Tennessee

W

37-6

October 22

vs

November 5

vs

#1 LSU

L

9-6 (OT)

November 12

@

Mississippi State

W

24-7

November 19

vs

Georgia Southern

W

45-21

November 26

@

Auburn

W

42-14

48 Pride of the Tide!


BAMA

By The Numbers

Overall Record......................................... 11-1 At Home.................................................... 6-1 Away..........................................................5-0 Against SEC............................................. 7-1 Non-Conference.......................................4-0 During Day................................................5-0 At Night.....................................................6-1 Televised...................................................11-1 Alabama vs. Top 25................................. 4-1 Alabama vs. top 15.................................. 2-1 Alabama vs. top 10.................................. 0-1 Alabama vs. top 5.................................... 0-1 When scoring first................................... 7-1 When opponent scores first .................. 4-0 When winning coin toss..........................3-1 When losing coin toss............................ 8-0 When on natural grass............................ 10-1 When on artificial surface....................... 1-0 49


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Tide Talk

It always feels good to run behind the offensive line like that. To break free in Bryant-Denny is always a good feeling.

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�

- Running Back Trent Richardson (On breaking long runs at home)


CHAMPS FACTS The Tide faced four teams ranked in the top 25 of the USA Today Coaches Poll. Alabama finished the season ranked first in total defense.

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Tide Talk

It was a great team win. When I say team win, I’m talking about all the players, all the fans, all the people in the organization who contribute to the success of the team in every way. The fans were great out there today. The atmosphere was great. I think it affected their offense a little bit. We did a great job on special teams today. We came up with two big plays that both came out to be scores. I’m really proud of the way we played on defense.

52

- Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban (Following 38-14 win over Arkansas) Pride of the Tide!


CHAMPS FACTS Running Back Trent Richardson has lost just one fumble in 614 career touches. Trent Richardson has rushed for at least 100 yards in 9 of 12 games this season. 53


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CHAMPS FACTS Alabama’s 2011 senior class has won a school record 47 games over four seasons. Alabama’s victory in the Iron Bowl marked the Crimson Tide’s 15th 11-win season. 54

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Tide Talk

We take a lot of pride. We try to shut our offense out in practice every day, so when we shut somebody out; we’re kind of pleased with ourselves. But the way we executed today wasn’t our best, so we’re going to come back and work hard.

- Alabama Linebacker Nico Johnson (Following 34-0 win over Vanderbilt) 55


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Tide Talk

They are an excellent football team. That is the bottom line. We came out really ready to play and I thought we played an excellent first half. I wish we would have scored one more time. I wish we would have put 10 or 14 points on the board. I think that we did the best we could do in the first half. That is what they do to everybody. They wear you down.

�

- Ole Miss Head Coach Houston Nutt (Following 52-7 loss to Alabama) 56

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Tide Talk

I think there’s one thing our players have learned about our program over the last three or four years, that when we’re ready to play, we play pretty well. I thought our guys learned a lesson last week in terms of not performing that well in the first half, that when you’re not ready to play, you get average pretty quick, and certainly a lot of teams can beat you if you do that.

- Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban (Following 52-7 win over Ole Miss) 57


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CHAMPS FACTS The Tide is 48-3 when leading at halftime under Coach Nick Saban. Alabama is 4-8 all-time in overtime games.

58

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“

Tide Talk

To me, Trent Richardson is the best football player in the country. His performance and production pretty much speak for itself.

�

- Coach Nick Saban (making his case for Richardson to win the Heisman Trophy.)

59


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CHAMPS FACTS Alabama has been ranked for 63 straight weeks in the Associated Press Poll, the longest streak in the nation. 60

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CHAMPS FACTS With their win over Georgia Southern on Nov. 19, Alabama reached 10 wins for the fourth consecutive season. 61


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Tide Talk

All I know is that after being in this league for 10 years, there are a lot of good football players, teams and programs. Competition in this league is very difficult. It’s something great to be a part of. Anywhere you go it is going to be a difficult place to play in this conference. I would think that people would think that this is a very good conference.

62

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- Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban


Tide Talk

If you’re a team in our situation, who wouldn’t think they deserve to play in the national championship? As a team, we think we deserve it, and hopefully we get the nod to do so.

- Alabama Quarterback AJ McCarron 63


IRON BOWL

2011 2011 Iron Bowl Alabama at Auburn 64 The Tide Rolls!


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SEC Championship Game - Alabama at Auburn

Sometimes it’s best to save the best for last, and in the case of the 2011 Iron Bowl, the very best in the land, saved their very best of the regular season, for the very last game. If there was any doubt about Alabama belonging in the BCS Championship game the Tide did all they could to erase it, as they avenged last year’s loss to Auburn, reacquired dominance in the state, and staked their claim to face LSU in New Orleans. It really wasn’t fair for the Tigers, because the last thing they needed from a superior talented opponent from Tuscaloosa is for them to have even more motivation than they normally would for this game. The Tide was running on all cylinders in this game, flexing their muscles on both sides of the ball for the entire nation to see. Trent Richardson was outstanding, rushing for a career-high 203 yards, while AJ McCarron threw three touchdown passes in the first half alone in the 42-14 route. In regards to whether Alabama belonged in the National Championship game, Coach Saban let his team’s play do the talking for 60 minutes. Then he added a couple comments after the game to make sure that the right people got the message. “This team lost one game in overtime to a very, very good team who’s No. 1 right now, and we lost in overtime. Everybody’s got to make their choices and decisions about that. But I think

66 Pride of the Tide!

we’ve got a great football team and a great bunch of young men who have done a wonderful job and played some really dominant football on both sides of the ball. I think they deserve an opportunity, the best opportunity that’s out there for them.” With the game out of hand in the second half and the outcome quite clear, thousands of Bama fans who in the fourth quarter completely out numbered their very quiet and humbled Auburn counterparts, began chants of “Heisman” for Richardson, and then “LSU” for the team they wanted to see their beloved Tide get another crack at in New Orleans. In a legendary series filled with bad blood and close games, this one felt more like a coronation instead of a contest. It was completely one sided, and the only real drama centered on whether Alabama would get invited to play for a chance to win the ultimate crystal trophy. And we all know that in the end, the Tide, and their fans, got exactly what they wanted and deserved.


CHAMPS STATS

Rushing

Carries

Yards

T. Richardson

22

203

Eddie Lacy

4

6

Jalston Fowler

1

15

Passing

ATT-Att

Yards

TD

AJ McCarron

18-23

184

3

Receiving

Receptions Yards

TD

Marquis Maze

4

18

-

Trent Richardson 1

5

1

November 26th #2 Alabama – 42 #24 Auburn – 14

Brad Smelley

6

86

1

Kenny Bell

2

46

1

Michael Williams

2

12

-

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Tide Talk

We definitely had to win this game. We knew what was at stake. We just had to come out and play our game and that’s what we did. If we wanted a chance at getting back to the national championship, then we had to win this game, and that’s what we did. - Alabama Quarterback AJ McCarron

68

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CHAMPS FACTS The win over Auburn marked the 11th on the season for Alabama. It is the 15th 11-win season in Crimson Tide history. The 15 11-win seasons ties Penn State, for the second most 11-win seasons in college football history. Alabama has won 11 or more games three times under head coach Nick Saban. The 203 rushing yards by Trent Richardson was the 11th time an Alabama back has surpassed the 200-yard rushing mark. The 203 yards by Trent Richardson marked his ninth 100-yard game on the season, and third in a row. The nine 100-yard games tie Mark Ingram (2009) for the most in school history. With 3 touchdown passes against Auburn, AJ McCarron tied the Alabama record for touchdown passes thrown against Auburn. It is the fourth time an Alabama quarterback has thrown 3 touchdowns in an Iron Bowl game. With the victory, Alabama holds a 41-34-1 lead in a series that dates back to the 1893 season. With the win over Auburn, the Crimson Tide is 48-3 when leading at halftime under head coach Nick Saban.

“

We followed the fundamentals, and we did the things the coaches told us to do. We were able to react on what we saw and I felt that we did a great job overall. - Alabama Defensive Back Dre Kirkpatrick (On defensive Performance)

�

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Tide Talk

Our guys played a tough game. We were fortunate today to come out on top. I’m really proud of the effort that they gave, and all of the work that they have done all year long. Our goal today was to play our best football game, and to play the best that we could play. I’m satisfied with what our players did. This team only lost one game in overtime to a very good team that is No. 1 right now. I think we have a great football team, a great bunch of young men who have done a wonderful job, and they have played some really dominant football on both sides of the ball. - Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban 70

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“

Tide Talk

We executed our game plan. We tried to make them one-dimensional by taking away the run and making them throw the ball and we did that.

�

- Alabama Defensive Back Dee Milliner 71


Crimson

Pride! Alabama Beats LSU in the BCS Championship 72 Pride of the Tide!


BCS Championship New Orleans Superdome January 9, 2012 73


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BCS Championship Game - Alabama vs LSU Wow! That’s about all you can say after watching Alabama absolutely dominate, and embarrass LSU in the BCS Championship game in New Orleans. It looked liked the Varsity against the JV, men against boys, champs against chumps. In the rematch of the two best teams in college football, it could not have been more clear who was worthy of hoisting the crystal trophy. For whatever reason, the top-ranked Tigers came out flat, and the Tide went out and flattened them for 60 full minutes. There are no coaching staffs that are going to out-scheme or out-prepare Nick Saban and Alabama, and when you give him over 40 days to prepare for a championship clash, well, nobody should be surprised by the 21-0 pasting.

74 Pride of the Tide!

“That was the message before the game: to finish,” coach Saban said after the annihilation. “In fact, it was how bad do you want to finish? We certainly didn’t play a perfect game, we got a field goal blocked, we couldn’t find the end zone for a long time, but we just kept playing.” Alabama’s performance in the game could be a Wikipedia page under the headline of ‘Team Effort’. Every aspect of the game that the Tide needed to improve on from the November loss to LSU, they did. And it started with the performance of quarterback AJ McCarron. He became the first sophomore


January 9th #2 Alabama – 21 #1 LSU – 0

QB to lead his team to a BCS Championship, and he was named the Offensive MVP after completing 23-of-34 passes for 234 yards. His first down throws kept the LSU defense on their heels, and his leadership and gritty determination the entire game was impressive. “When you have a great offensive line like I have, and great players around you, it makes your job easy as quarterback. I’ve got to give all the credit to them.” There was some fear from the Bama faith-

ful about the Tide’s special teams, but even in that category it was a mismatch, as Jeremy Shelley kicked five field goals. Trent Richardson pounded away at the LSU defense all night long, softening the Tigers defenders to set up the dynamic passing game, spearheaded by McCarron. Late in the fourth quarter, Bama’s star Trent Richardson scored the only touchdown in the eight quarters of play between these two teams, as he broke free for a 34-yard score to completely sap the Tiger’s spirit. 75


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There aren’t enough superlatives to describe the Bama defense. They literally made the LSU offense look lost, confused, and clueless. They held LSU to a total of 92 yards in the game, and just five first downs. 11 of 44 offensive plays for LSU resulted in negative yardage, a truly unbelievable statistic for a team that had been undefeated through four months of play. The ultimate football mastermind and sideline maestro, Nick Saban, deserves as much credit as he’s going to get showered with for becoming the only coach to win three BCS Championships. He pushed all the right buttons, from the moment the Tide walked off their home field dejected after 76 Pride of the Tide!

losing to LSU in November. He set the perfect tone, always believing that if his incredibly talented team did things the right way, they would be rewarded with another opportunity. And there was no way he was going to let his team miss out on the chance to build a modern-day dynasty that the Tide has now become. “It really isn’t about me,” Saban insisted after the game. “It’s a lot more than that.” He’s right. It’s the most perfect ending to nine months of misery and joy, destruction and domination the city of Tuscaloosa has had to endure, and it’s a championship that can be shared and savored by everyone.


Carries

Yards

T. Richardson

20

96

1

Eddie Lacy

11

43

-

AJ McCarron

4

11

-

Passing

Cmp-Att

Yards

TD

AJ McCarron

23-34

234

-

Receiving

Receptions

Yards

TD

TD

Kevin Norwood

4

78

-

Darius Hanks

5

58

-

Brad Smelley

7

39

-

Kenny Bell

1

26

-

Chris Underwood

2

12

-

Trent Richardson

2

11

-

Michael Williams

2

10

-

Defensive Stats

Tackles

CHAMPS STATS

Rushing

Sacks

Courtney Upshaw

7

1

Jerrell Harris

7

-

DeQuan Menzie

4

-

Dont’a Hightower

4

1

Nico Johnson

4

-

Dre Kirkpatrick

4

-

77


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Tide Talk

It’s certainly been a privilege to have the opportunity to coach this group of young men on this team. It’s sometimes easy to do the right thing some of the time. But these guys, over the last year, have done things right almost all the time. And the goal today was you control your destiny, you control what you do; the outcome of the game, as good as LSU was, will be determined by how we play and what we do. 78

Pride of the Tide!

- Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban


“

Tide Talk

I give credit to our opponent. Great playing. They kept the ball and it became very difficult to get first downs. And with time, certainly, it spoke to victory for them.

�

- LSU Head Coach Les Miles

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CHAMPS FACTS Alabama has won national championships in 1925, 1926, 1930, 1934, 1941, 1961, 1965, 1966, 1973, 1978, 1979, 1992, 2009 and 2011. The combined record of the 14 national championship teams is 157-7-2. 80

Pride of the Tide!


Tide Talk

That defense is as good as any defense I’ve ever seen. They rush the passer, they have awesome linebackers and they’re great in coverage. They really don’t have any weaknesses. They have to be as good as any defense ever. - Alabama Offensive Lineman Barrett Jones

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CHAMPS FACTS The Crimson Tide is 49-3 when leading at halftime under head coach Nick Saban.

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CHAMPS FACTS This group of Alabama seniors has won 48 games during their career. Alabama earned their 14th national championship in school history. 83


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Tide Talk

I haven’t hit a game-winner since I’ve been here. Hitting five in a game like this, it’s unbelievable. I can’t imagine anything being better.

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- Alabama Kicker Jeremy Shelley


Tide Talk

We went to see the movie Red Tails last night, which I would recommend to anybody, but those guys’s motto was ‘the last plane, the last bullet, the last man, the last minute, we fight. And we always stay with the mission.’ I think that kind of described the spirit of that group extremely well, but it also describes the spirit of the group of players that we have on our team this year, and it takes a tremendous amount of resiliency to come back.

- Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban 85


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CHAMPS FACTS Alabama and LSU will receive about $18 million each for their participation in the BCS Championship. That will be shared with 12 SEC teams. Alabama owns the NCAA record for most bowl games (58) and most victories (33). Alabama Kicker Jeremy Shelley tied a bowl record with 5 field goals made and set a bowl record with 7 attempts. 86

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Tide Talk

This defense is built on stopping them, and that’s what we did. We wanted to come out and show the world we beat ourselves the first game. We wanted to come out and dominate from start to finish, and that’s what we did.

-

Alabama Linebacker Courtney Upshaw 87


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CHAMPS FACTS Alabama coach Nick Saban has two wins against LSU in five seasons. He had four wins against Alabama in five seasons as LSU coach from 2000-2004 88

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CHAMPS FACTS The SEC won its sixth straight national championship and 8th overall in the BCS era. Alabama had just one penalty in the National Championship game. 89


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CHAMPS FACTS Running back Trent Richardson broke the Alabama single-season rushing yards mark against LSU with 96 yards on 20 carries. That total gave Richardson 1,679 rushing yards in 2011 to surpass Mark Ingram’s 1,658 yards set in 2009. 90

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Tide Talk

After or during that Florida game, I’m sure pretty much most of the country saw Coach rip me for showing too much emotion. And after the LSU game the first time, he told me to play like myself, show emotion. So Coach told me to, you know, show some emotion. Play like myself. And I’m just thankful Coach gave me the opportunity to come out and put the ball in my hands and let me make some plays. - Alabama QB AJ McCarron

” 91


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CHAMPS FACTS Alabama took a total of three weeks off during the 44 days since their last game, so they wouldn’t get burned out. Les Miles would have received a $1 million bonus if LSU had beaten Alabama. 92

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CHAMPS FACTS Alabama opponents crossed the 50-yard line only 39 times in the 2011-12 season. LSU only did it once the entire game. This was the first ever shutout in the 14-year BCS Championship history. 93


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Tide Talk

No, I’m sure when we watch the film these guys know we always have a good, bad and ugly reel. I can always find something ugly to talk about.

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- Coach Nick Saban (When asked if he felt the game was a total domination)

Pride of the Tide!


CHAMPS FACTS It was the first time LSU has been shut out since 2002, when Alabama shut out the Tigers 31-0 and Nick Saban was coaching the Tigers. The BCS trophy is valued at $30,000. The trophy features a football made of Waterford速 Crystal and an ebony base. The winning institution retains The Trophy for permanent display on campus. 95


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Tide Talk

The whole defense is the MVP, the whole defense. Roll Tide baby. Roll Tide!

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- Alabama Linebacker Courtney Upshaw

Pride of the Tide!


Pride of the Tide!  

Alabama wins the 2012 BCS Championship!

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