Preview capsule: Tennessee at No. 1 Alabama - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Preview capsule: Tennessee at No. 1 Alabama

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AJ McCarron and No. 1 Alabama will host Tennessee led by quarterback Tyler Worley Saturday, October 26, 2013.  (AP Photos/Butch Dill/Wade Payne) AJ McCarron and No. 1 Alabama will host Tennessee led by quarterback Tyler Worley Saturday, October 26, 2013. (AP Photos/Butch Dill/Wade Payne)

Matchup:  Tennessee (4-3, 1-2 SEC) at No. 1 Alabama (7-0, 4-0)

Time:  2:30 p.m.

TV:  CBS

Line: Alabama by 28 1/2.

Series record: Alabama leads 49-38-7.

Last meeting:  October 20, 2012 in Knoxville, Tenn. -- Alabama 44, Tennessee 13.

WHAT'S AT STAKE

This is Alabama's last game before a showdown with No. 13 LSU in two weeks. Tennessee is fresh from a major upset of No. 20 South Carolina, but a win over the rival Crimson Tide would make a much bigger statement for Butch Jones' team.

KEY MATCHUP

Alabama's defensive front against Tennessee's offensive line. Led by nose guard Brandon Ivory and linebacker C.J. Mosley, the Tide barely budges against opposing running games, allowing 98.3 yards per game. Tackles Antonio Richardson and Ja'Wuan James lead Tennessee's formidable group of blockers, who have allowed eight sacks while paving the way for Rajion Neal and the running game.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Tennessee: QB Justin Worley. Worley is coming off solid performances against Georgia and South Carolina and wasn't intercepted in either game. He'll have to deal with a pass rush led by freshman A'Shawn Robinson and get something going in the passing game, perhaps with emerging freshman WR Marquez North.

Alabama: S Landon Collins. The sophomore moved to free safety to fill in during Ha Ha Clinton-Dix's suspension. Now, he's back at his normal position with the season-ending knee injury to starting strong safety Vinnie Sunseri. Collins, the team's No. 3 tackler, was one of the Tide's top recruits two years ago and has been a wrecking ball on special teams.

FACTS & FIGURES

Alabama has won the last six meetings in this traditional rivalry by an average margin of 34.0-10.8.Tennessee has scored 17 or fewer points in the last nine meetings. ... The Vols snapped a 19-game losing streak to ranked teams with the victory over the Gamecocks on Michael Palardy's last-play, 19-yard field goal. ... AJ McCarron, who is 32-2 as a starting quarterback, could move into a second-place tie on the school's all-time wins list with Jeff Rutledge. Jay Barker (35-2-1) holds the Alabama victory mark among quarterbacks. ... Tennessee has a winning record through seven games for the first time since 2007, also a 4-3 start.

Matchup

 TENNALA
W-L 4-3 7-0
Avg Points 30.4 40.7
Avg Points Allowed 27.0 9.7
Home Record 4-1 4-0
Road Record 0-2 3-0
Division Record 1-2 3-0
Conference Record 1-2 4-0

Passing Leaders

 
TennesseeCMP%YDSTDINT
J. Worley 55.8 1119 10 6
N. Peterman 43.5 45 0 2
 
AlabamaCMP%YDSTDINT
A. McCarron 69.2 1587 14 3
B. Sims 66.7 154 2 0

Rushing Leaders

 
TennesseeCARYDSAVGTD
R. Neal 132 693 5.3 8
M. Lane 57 335 5.9 4
 
AlabamaCARYDSAVGTD
T. Yeldon 100 657 6.6 7
K. Drake 49 402 8.2 7

Receiving Leaders

 
TennesseeRECYDSAVGTD
M. North 21 281 13.4 1
A. Howard 23 251 10.9 3
 
AlabamaRECYDSAVGTD
D. White 20 300 15.0 3
C. Jones 26 275 10.6 2
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