Alabama Takes on Auburn in The Iron Bowl
The Alabama Crimson Tide (10-1) hit the road today to take on Auburn (8-3) at 2:30 p.m. in Jordan-Hare Stadium. Coach Nick Saban takes his fifth ranked Crimson Tide to The Plains, hoping to lead his team to a decisive win to leave an impression on the College Football Playoff Committee. Saban is 8-4 all time against Auburn as Alabama head coach, but he is 3-3 when playing Auburn in Jordan-Hare Stadium.
All eyes will be on redshirt sophomore quarterback Mac Jones as he makes his third start on the season, it is his first start on the road. Jones gets the start due to the hip injury that sidelined Tua Tagovailoa. Against Arkansas and Western Carolina Jones combined to pass for 28/34 attempts 510 yards and six touchdowns. Auburn’s defense has given up the 14th fewest yards in all of college football making this weekend’s game Jones’s toughest test as Tide starting quarterback.
Jones will be aided by a plethora of skill position talent led by Najee Harris, Jerry Jeudy, Henry Ruggs and DeVonta Smith. Harris has been the Tide’s leading running back all season and will need to be prepared for a larger role in the offense with Tagovailoa sidelined. Harris has rushed for 942 yards on the season with 10 rushing touchdowns; he has also amassed 278 yards receiving and seven touchdowns through the air. The California native will need to be ready to shoulder the load going against arguably the best defensive line the Tide has seen all year.
The Auburn defensive line boasts two potential All-Americans, Derrick Brown and Marlon Davidson. Defensive coordinator Kevin Steele’s Tigers have given up the 10th-fewest points per game despite having faced five ranked opponents already this year. Brown and Davidson have combined for 11.5 sacks and 21.5 tackles for loss this season. Both are considered top NFL prospects with Brown being projected as a top-10 pick in next year’s draft. The Tigers haven’t given up more than 24 points in a game all season despite taking on playoff hopefuls LSU, Georgia and Oregon.
The Crimson Tide will be favored by three points when the ball is kicked in Jordan-Hare. Auburn will be Alabama’s third ranked team it has played this year. The weather will be in the low 70s at kickoff with clear skies throughout the ballgame. Brad Nessler and Gary Danielson will be on the broadcast for CBS. You can listen to Eli Gold’s radio call on the Crimson Tide Sports Network on Tide 100.9 fm, or using the Tide100.9 app and also using the tide1009.com/listen-live link.