Alabama earns statement win against Auburn in regular season finale

Alabama wide receiver Ja'Corey Brooks (7) runs the ball against Auburn at Bryant-Denny Stadium...
Alabama wide receiver Ja'Corey Brooks (7) runs the ball against Auburn at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa, AL on Saturday, Nov 26, 2022. (Crimson Tide Photos | Crimson Tide Photos / UA Athletics)
Published: Nov. 26, 2022 at 6:09 PM CST
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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WBRC) - Having no control over their own destiny, the seventh ranked Crimson Tide made a statement win Saturday against in-state rival Auburn, beating the Tigers 49-27.

After both teams traded punts to start the game, it was unranked Auburn who drew blood first. Robby Ashford ran for 25 yards to put the Tigers near midfield. Three plays later, a pass interference against ‘Bama gave Auburn possession at the 26-yard-line. Ashford capped off the drive by weaving through traffic and stretching out into the endzone to go up 7-0.

Alabama wasted no time responding as Bryce Young tossed the ball downfield for a 52-yard completion to Jermaine Burton. Two plays later, Young ran right out of the pocket and crossed into the endzone to tie the game at 7-7.

The Tide took the lead when Young capped off an eight play drive with a short pass to Jase McClellan who ran the rest of the way for a 10-yard touchdown.

Jarquez Hunter took an option pitch on the Tigers’ next drive but fumbled the ball while running. DJ Dale fell on the loose ball and gave Alabama possession deep in Auburn territory. Young completed passes for 13 and 24 yards before Roydell Williams ran left for a five-yard touchdown to put ‘Bama up two scores.

Trailing 21-7, Auburn strung together 10-play drive that ended when Ashford completed a 20-yard pass to Ja’Varrius Johnson for a score to cut Alabama’s lead to 21-14.

Young completed five passes on the ensuing drive, including a 32-yard touchdown pass to Ja’Corey Brooks.

Auburn forced Alabama to punt with just under three minutes left in the first half. The ball went through the hand of Keionte Scott and was recovered by Kneeland Hibbett for Alabama. Officials reviewed whether or not the ball had touched the hands of Scott and, much to the dismay of Coach Carnell Williams, said the ruling on the field stood.

‘Bama only needed four plays to take advantage of the turnover when Young completed a deep pas to Traeshon Holden for a 27-yard touchdown to go up 35-14 at halftime.

Alabama received the ball to start the second half. Young completed passes for 10 and 13 yards before taking off for an 18-yard run to get into Tiger territory. Six plays later, McClellan rushed up the middle for a two-yard touchdown to go up 42-14.

The Tigers needed a spark and found one when Jarquez Hunter found 45 yards of running room up the left sideline to get Auburn inside the Alabama 10-yard-line. After a 5-yard loss, Ashford took a quarterback draw 14 yards into the endzone to cut the lead down to 42-21.

Auburn had the ball in Alabama territory to start the fourth quarter. The Tigers marched down to the five-yard-line before stalling on offense. Auburn was forced to settle for a 32-yard field goal, cutting the lead down to 42-24.

After Owen Pappoe intercepted Young, Auburn was forced to settle for a 39-yard field goal. The Tigers attempted an onside kick, but it was recovered by Ja’Corey Brooks who ran it all the way down to the 23-yard-line. On the very next play, Jahmyr Gibbs ran in the 23 yards for a late touchdown to put Alabama up 49-27.

Auburn’s season ends with a 5-7 record as the Tigers continue to look for their next head coach. Alabama, meanwhile, can only wait and hope for chaos if they hope to slide into the College Football Playoff.

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