AUBURN, Ala. – The No. 2 ranked Alabama football team beat No. 24 Auburn, 42-14, in Jordan-Hare Stadium Saturday, going to 11-1 on the season and 7-1 in Southeastern Conference play while the Tigers fell to 7-5, 4-4 in the SEC.
"I don't think there are really any words to describe how proud I am of our players and the people in our organization that have worked so hard this year," UA head coach Nick Saban said. "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."
The Crimson Tide finished the day with 397 yards of offense led by junior running back Trent Richardson who powered his way to a career-best 203 yards and caught a touchdown pass in the first half to move within one of the SEC single-season touchdown record with 23 on the year.
"To me Trent Richardson is the best football player in the country," Saban said. "You love saying that about someone who is such a good person, and someone who does so much to serve other people. He is a great teammate. He is a leader. He cares about everyone around him. His performance and production pretty much speak for itself."
Senior tight end Brad Smelley also had a career day, both in receptions (6) and yards (86), leading the Tide in both categories. He also scored a touchdown, his third in two games. Sophomore quarterback AJ McCarron put together a solid performance in his first Iron Bowl as a starter, going 18-for-23 with 184 yards and three touchdowns.
His three touchdown passes equaled an Alabama record for scoring passes against Auburn as he became the fourth Tide quarterback to have three touchdown passes against the Tigers, joining Steve Sloan (1964), Jeff Rutledge (1978) and Freddie Kitchens (1996).
Over the last two games, McCarron is 32-for-42 with 374 yards and has tossed six touchdowns. Two of his three touchdowns against Auburn were over 20 yards, pushing his season total over that distance to eight of his 16 touchdowns.
Overall, five different Tide players scored touchdowns and Jeremy Shelley added a pair of field goals to round out the scoring. In addition to four offensive touchdowns, sophomore cornerback
Dee Milliner snagged his team-leading third interception of the season and returned it 35 yards for a touchdown. Alabama has now recorded at least one interception in nine of its 12 games this season.
Defensively, Alabama held the Tigers to just 140 yards offensively, with Auburn's touchdowns coming on a fumble recovery in the end zone and a kickoff return.
With the win, Alabama has produced 15 seasons with 11 or more victories, including three in the last four seasons.