for this game

Richardson, McCarron power Alabama to win over Auburn

Nov 27, 2011 - 1:43 AM Auburn, AL (Sports Network) - Trent Richardson carried the ball 27 times for a career-high 203 yards and AJ McCarron threw three touchdown passes, as the second-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide dominated the Auburn Tigers, 42-14, in the annual Iron Bowl.

McCarron completed 18-of-23 passes for 184 yards for the Crimson Tide (11-1, 7-1 SEC), who will most likely secure the coveted No. 2 position in the BCS rankings.

Brad Smelley caught six passes for 86 yards and a score for Alabama, which has won three in a row since a loss to top-ranked LSU on November 5. Kenny Bell hauled in two passes for 46 yards and a touchdown.

Richardson had a five-yard TD catch for the Crimson Tide, who avenged a 28-27 home loss to Auburn last year.

"I don't think there are really any words to describe how proud I am of our players," Alabama head coach Nick Saban said. "I think we have a great football team, a great bunch of young men who have done a wonderful job and they have played some really dominant football on both sides of the ball."

Clint Moseley connected on 11-of-18 passes for 62 yards and an interception for the Tigers (7-5, 4-4), who had won 14 consecutive games at Jordan-Hare Stadium.

Michael Dyer carried the ball 13 times for 48 yards in defeat.

Alabama's offense got going after each team punted once to start the game. Smelley kept the nine-play drive alive twice with some big catches on third down. He hauled in passes of eight and 11 yards to put the ball near midfield, and McCarron launched a 41-yard bomb to Bell for a 7-0 lead.

After Auburn went three-and-out, the Crimson Tide took over at the Tigers' 35 due to a 10-yard punt. On the first play, McCarron used a play-action pass to fake out the defense, leaving Smelley wide open on the left side of the field for an easy touchdown.

Alabama was backed up at its own 10 after forcing another punt by the Tigers. McCarron was sacked from behind by Corey Lemonier and lost control of the football, which Kenneth Carter fell on in the end zone for an Auburn score.

The Crimson Tide took the momentum right back with a 12-play, 80-yard scoring drive. The visitors converted three third downs on the march, and a defensive pass interference penalty put the ball at the five. From there, McCarron rolled to his right and hooked up with Richardson to make it 21-7 with 9:11 left until halftime.

Jeremy Shelley's 30-yard field goal with 1:44 to go made it a 24-7 game at the break.

The Tigers made things a bit interesting early in the second half, when Onterio McCalebb took the opening kickoff back 83 yards for a touchdown.

Alabama responded with a 28-yard Shelley field goal to make it a 27-14 game with 8:47 left in the third quarter.

The Crimson Tide came up with a big defensive stop late in the frame. Auburn faced a 4th-and-1 near midfield, but Dyer was stopped for no gain after taking a direct snap.

Alabama's defense essentially put the game away on the third play of the fourth quarter. Moseley was intercepted by Dee Milliner, who sprinted 35 yards the other way for a touchdown.

The Tigers moved the ball to the five on their next possession. But on third down, Moseley was sacked by Courtney Upshaw for a loss of six yards. Moseley then gained just one yard on the ground to turn the ball over on downs.

Richardson followed with an electrifying 57-yard run to put the ball inside the 20. Jalston Fowler's 15-yard rushing TD made it a 42-14 game with 6:40 to play.

Alabama capped the victory with a fumble recovery in the final minute.

"We wanted to keep the game close until the fourth quarter and have a chance to make a play here and there and have a chance to win the game," Auburn head coach Gene Chizik said. "We got to the fourth quarter and felt like we were somewhere in that ballpark, and the fourth quarter got away from us."

Game Notes

Alabama holds a 41-34-1 advantage in the series...Carter's fumble recovery for a touchdown in the first quarter was the first defensive touchdown for Auburn in an Iron Bowl since Brad Ware's 34-yard interception return in 1996...McCalebb's 83-yard kickoff return marked the first time in school history an Auburn player has returned a kickoff for a touchdown against Alabama...It is the 15th 11-win season in Crimson Tide history. Alabama tied Penn State for the second-most 11-win seasons in college football history...Richardson marked his ninth 100-yard rushing game this season and third in a row. His nine 100-yard games ties Mark Ingram (2009) for the most in school history.