Alabama at Tennessee

No. 1 Alabama trounces No. 9 Tennessee in 49-10 runaway

By STEVE MEGARGEE
AP Sports Writer
  •  

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Alabama wouldn't allow Tennessee to produce another comeback.

Jalen Hurts and Bo Scarbrough each rushed for over 100 yards Saturday and No. 1 Alabama again got points from its defense and special teams in a 49-10 blowout of No. 9 Tennessee.

It was the most lopsided victory by either team in this rivalry since a 51-0 Alabama victory in 1906.

''This is as proud of our team as I've been all year long in terms of playing a complete game against a very good team, especially in a tough environment,'' Alabama coach Nick Saban said.

Tennessee (5-2, 2-2 SEC) had erased double-digit deficits in five of its first six games - including a 45-38 loss at Texas A&M last week in which it forced overtime after trailing 28-7 - but the Volunteers couldn't deliver a similar rally this time.

Alabama (7-0, 4-0) instead had college football's cardiac kids dead and buried by the end of the third quarter. The Crimson Tide capitalized on the injury issues that have decimated Tennessee's depth chart.

''That was our goal coming in, to score fast and get them tired,'' Alabama tight end O.J. Howard. ''I think it worked.''

Alabama earned its 19th straight victory overall and its 10th consecutive win in this annual series. Tennessee has lost its last 13 games against Southeastern Conference Western Division schools.

Hurts, the Crimson Tide's freshman quarterback, ran for 132 yards and three touchdowns as Alabama outrushed Tennessee 438-32. Scarborough rushed for 109 yards on just five carries, including an 85-yard touchdown.

Alabama posted its highest single-game rushing total since running for 451 yards in a 56-28 victory over Tennessee in 1986.

''They did an exceptional job tonight,'' Tennessee safety Todd Kelly Jr. said. ''They executed and we didn't, at the end of the day.''

The Tide also scored on Ronnie Harrison's 58-yard interception return and Eddie Jackson's 79-yard punt return. Alabama has 11 non-offensive touchdowns this season, including eight from its defense. The Tide entered the day leading all Football Bowl Subdivision teams in both categories.

''It's very contagious,'' Alabama defensive end Jonathan Allen said. ''When one (player) gets one, we always want another one. That's our goal. We always want one more, one more.''

Tennessee was playing a ranked opponent for the fourth straight week, a stretch that has taken a physical toll.

Injuries limited the Vols' defense to such an extent that linebacker Elliott Berry, cornerback Baylen Buchanan and defensive tackle Kahlil McKenzie made their first career starts. McKenzie left in the first quarter after he appeared to hurt his shoulder.

On offense, injuries sidelined guard Jashon Robertson and center Dylan Wiesman for the entire game and knocked out Brett Kendrick in the first quarter. The only starting lineman from last week's loss to Texas A&M who played the majority of Saturday's game was right guard Jack Jones.

''Usually when you have a run on injuries, it usually affects one position group, two position groups,'' Tennessee coach Butch Jones said. ''It's affected every position group.''

THE TAKEAWAY

This game showcased the versatility of Alabama's rushing attack as the Tide threatened to have three 100-yard rushers in one game. Damien Harris rushed for 94 yards on 14 carries.

Alabama's defense arguably was even more impressive as it suffocated a Tennessee offense that had gained 684 yards against Texas A&M one week earlier.

Tennessee: The Vols' off week comes at an ideal time as they attempt to get healthier. Even in a loss, Derek Barnett showed why he belongs in any conversation of the nation's top defensive players. Barnett recorded a sack and forced a fumble to set up Tennessee's lone touchdown and later had his first career interception.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

Alabama will certainly maintain its No. 1 ranking after this impressive victory. The question is how far Tennessee will drop after losing its second straight. The Vols will be out of the top 10. Will they stay in the top 15- or top 20?

NUMBERS GAME

Alabama gained 8.9 yards per carry. Tennessee had 1 yard per carry. ... Alabama outgained Tennessee 594-163.

UP NEXT

Alabama: In its third straight game against a ranked team, Alabama hosts No. 6 Texas A&M.

Tennessee: The Vols have the week off before visiting South Carolina on Oct. 29.

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This story has been corrected to show that Ronnie Harrison scored on a 58-yard interception return. It also corrects the rushing total from the 1986 game to 451.

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More AP college football: http://collegefootball.ap.org

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
 
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Scoreboard
Alabama #1  (7-0) «147141449
Tennessee #9  (5-2)073010
Players of the Game
Crimson Tide

J. Hurts
Att 26
Comp 16
Yds 143
TD 0
Volunteers

A. Kamara
Rush 8
Yds 21
Avg 2.6
TD 1
Scoring Summary
BAMAArDarius Stewart 29 yd run (Adam Griffith kick)
BAMARonnie Harrison 58 yd interception return (Adam Griffith kick)
TENNAlvin Kamara 7 yd run (Aaron Medley kick)
BAMAJalen Hurts 45 yd run (Adam Griffith kick)
BAMAJalen Hurts 2 yd run (Adam Griffith kick)
TENNAaron Medley 37 yd FG
BAMAJalen Hurts 1 yd run (Adam Griffith kick)
BAMAEddie Jackson 79 yd punt return (Adam Griffith kick)
BAMABo Scarbrough 85 yd run (Adam Griffith kick)
 
Team Stats
 BAMATENN
First Downs2811
Third Down Efficiency6-123-16
Fourth Down Efficiency0-10-1
Plays-Net Yards76-59463-163
Rushes-Yds49-43832-32
Passing Yds156131
Kick Return Yds26116
Punt Return Yds10860
Passes17-27-118-31-1
Punts4-20010-483
Fumbles-Lost2-10-0
Penalties-Yds5-381-10
Time of Poss.31:3328:27
 
Individual Stats
RUSHING
BAMA: Jalen Hurts 12-132, Bo Scarbrough 5-109, Damien Harris 14-94, B.J. Emmons 9-38, Joshua Jacobs 6-38, ArDarius Stewart 1-29, Cooper Bateman 2--2
TENN: Jalen Hurd 13-28, Alvin Kamara 8-21, John Kelly 3-8, Tyler Byrd 1-6, Joshua Dobbs 7--31
PASSING
BAMA: Jalen Hurts 16-26-143-1, Cooper Bateman 1-1-13-0
TENN: Joshua Dobbs 16-27-92-1, Quinten Dormady 2-4-39-0
RECEIVING
BAMA: ArDarius Stewart 8-54, Calvin Ridley 5-65, O.J. Howard 1-23, Trevon Diggs 1-13, Joshua Jacobs 1-8, Damien Harris 1--7
TENN: Josh Malone 5-61, Jauan Jennings 3-20, Jalen Hurd 3--1, Ethan Wolf 2-30, Alvin Kamara 2-7, Josh Smith 1-10, John Kelly 1-3, Tyler Byrd 1-1
 
Standings
TeamStandingsConferenceOverall
Alabama1st SEC West8-014-1
Tennessee2nd SEC East4-49-4

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