Top-ranked Crimson Tide roll past Ole Miss
Tuscaloosa, AL (Sports Network) - T.J. Yeldon and Kenyan Drake each had long touchdown runs, and No. 1 Alabama smothered No. 21 Ole Miss, 25-0, at Bryant- Denny Stadium.
Yeldon finished with 121 yards on 17 carries, the most notable a 68-yard scamper on the second play of the second half. With the game no longer in doubt, Drake tacked on a 50-yard score in the fourth quarter to make it a rout.
The Crimson Tide (4-0, 2-0 SEC) limited the Rebels to 205 total yards and added a safety for good measure in their 10th straight win against them. They converted 8-of-17 third downs to control the clock, with A.J. McCarron throwing for 180 yards and an interception on an efficient 25-of-32 attempts.
"This is a big win for us in my opinion," Alabama head coach Nick Saban said. "There were a lot of tough circumstances like stops in the red area and fourth down stops."
Ole Miss (3-1, 1-1), which was shut out for the first time since 1998, had four possessions deep in Alabama territory and came away empty each time via three turnovers on downs and an interception.
Bo Wallace had just 159 passing yards for the Rebels, who were held to 46 yards on the ground and fell to 0-10 all-time when playing the No. 1 ranked team in the country.
Despite the lopsided final score, Ole Miss stayed competitive and save for the long touchdown runs, kept Alabama's offense in check.
The first big run, however, was a back-breaker.
Yeldon took an inside handoff, spun through an arm tackle and sprinted 68 yards for a touchdown and a 16-0 Alabama lead after a sluggish opening 30 minutes.
The Rebels were seven yards away from getting on the board late in the third quarter, but they were turned away as C.J. Mosley knocked down Wallace's fourth-down pass.
An interception on the first play of the fourth quarter gave the underdogs good field position again, but Wallace threw incomplete on 4th-and-10 from the Alabama 18 for yet another fruitless drive.
After Cody Mandell pinned Ole Miss at its own 1-yard line, Wallace was hit by Mosley a yard into the end zone and dropped for a safety with 5:43 remaining.
Drake scored on the first play after the free kick to punctuate the outcome.
Ole Miss' Laquon Treadwell had a 38-yard catch to the Alabama 37 on the first play of the game, but the freshman was stopped inches short of the first down on 4th-and-2 on a terrific open-field tackle by Ha Ha Clinton-Dix.
The change in possession led to a 28-yard field goal from Cade Foster at the end of an 11-play, 61-yard march that lasted more than six minutes.
Another promising Ole Miss drive was thwarted when Eddie Jackson made a leaping interception along the sideline at the Alabama 27. The Rebels tried a trick play, and Treadwell's ill-advised halfback pass into traffic was picked off.
"(Treadwell) should have run it," Ole Miss Head Coach Hugh Freeze said of the play. "(Jackson) kind of dropped and we would have probably gotten five yards and kept moving, but we didn't. Obviously I didn't do a good enough job of coaching him up on that one."
Although the Crimson Tide had their own struggles early, they padded their lead in the second quarter on Foster's career-long 53-yard field goal and a 42-yard kick on the last play of the half.
Alabama, which had four shutouts last season, has not allowed a touchdown in two straight games ... McCarron's 25 completions were a career high ... Alabama has outscored Ole Miss, 273-118, during its 10-game winning streak in the series ... Ole Miss was looking to go 4-0 for the first time since 1970 ... Wallace completed 17-of-31 passes, finding Donte Moncrief six times for 60 yards ... Alabama starting center Ryan Kelly left the game with a knee injury and was seen on the sideline sporting crutches in the second half ... Alabama held the ball for 38:29.
09/29 01:04:09 ET