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

Preview capsule: No. 1 Alabama at Mississippi State

Posted: Updated:
AJ McCarron and No. 1 Alabama will travel to Starkville to take on Dak Prescott and Mississippi State, Saturday, November 16, 2013. (AP Photos/Dave Martin/Rainier Ehrhardt) AJ McCarron and No. 1 Alabama will travel to Starkville to take on Dak Prescott and Mississippi State, Saturday, November 16, 2013. (AP Photos/Dave Martin/Rainier Ehrhardt)

Matchup:  No. 1 Alabama (9-0, 6-0 SEC) at Mississippi State (4-5, 1-4)

Time:  6:45 p.m. (ESPN)

Line: Alabama by 26.

Last meeting:  Alabama 38, Mississippi State 7 (Tuscaloosa, Ala.)

Series record: Alabama leads 76-18-3

WHAT'S AT STAKE

Alabama continues to roll toward a chance at its fourth national title in five seasons. Coach Nick Saban's bunch hasn't been challenged much this season, winning the past seven games by at least three touchdowns. Mississippi State needs two victories over its last three games to earn bowl eligibility for a fourth straight season. Alabama has a five-game winning streak in the series.

KEY MATCHUP

Alabama's defense against Mississippi State QB Dak Prescott. The 6-foot-2, 230-pound Prescott has had a breakout season for the Bulldogs, ranking fifth in the league with 2,264 yards of total offense, including 1,542 passing and 722 rushing. But he suffered a shoulder injury in last week's game against Texas A&M and coach Dan Mullen hasn't said if he'll play against the Tide. If Prescott can't go, senior Tyler Russell will be under center. Russell has thrown for 468 yards, three touchdowns and an interception this season.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Alabama: RB T.J. Yeldon has quietly put together a very efficient season. He's got 862 yards rushing and 12 touchdowns while averaging 6.2 yards per carry.

Mississippi State: RB Josh Robinson has been the backup to LaDarius Perkins all season, but might see a larger role after a breakout game against Texas A&M. The sophomore had six carries for 73 yards and one touchdown against the Aggies.

FACTS & FIGURES

Alabama QB A.J. McCarron has thrown 123 straight pass attempts without an interception. That's his third string of 100-plus passes without an INT during his career. He set the school record with 291 pass attempts without a pick last season. ... Alabama's defense is giving up 10.6 points per game this season, including just 6.2 points per game over the past seven victories. ... Alabama LB C.J. Mosley leads the team with seven tackles for a loss. ... Mississippi State is trying to snap a 14-game losing streak to nationally-ranked opponents. ... Mississippi State is averaging 459.2 yards of total offense per game, which is on pace to easily break the school record of 422.0 yards set in 1982.

  • UAB SportsMore>>

  • UAB names Cody Clements starting quarterback vs Troy

    UAB names Cody Clements starting quarterback vs Troy

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 3:13 PM EDT2014-08-26 19:13:29 GMT
    UAB will open the season with Cody Clements at quarterback. Clements, a junior college transfer from Cerritos College in California, beat out redshirt freshman Jeremiah Briscoe for the starting job.More >>
    UAB will open the season with Cody Clements at quarterback. Clements, a junior college transfer from Cerritos College in California, beat out redshirt freshman Jeremiah Briscoe for the starting job.More >>
  • UAB guard Chad Frazier granted his release from basketball program

    UAB guard Chad Frazier granted his release from basketball program

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 7:12 PM EDT2014-07-29 23:12:02 GMT
    The leading scorer on the UAB basketball team is leaving the program. Guard Chad Frazier was granted his release and will not return."Chad Frazier has been granted his release from our program," head coach Jerod Haase said in a statement. "We appreciate his contributions to our program and wish him the best." Frazier, a first team All-Conference USA selection, was arrested last month and charged with third degree domestic violence. The case was later dismissed.Frazier played one season at UAB...More >>
    The leading scorer on the UAB basketball team is leaving the program. Guard Chad Frazier was granted his release and will not return."Chad Frazier has been granted his release from our program," head coach Jerod Haase said in a statement. "We appreciate his contributions to our program and wish him the best." Frazier, a first team All-Conference USA selection, was arrested last month and charged with third degree domestic violence. The case was later dismissed.Frazier played one season at UAB...More >>
  • UAB grants Chad Frazier release from scholarship

    UAB grants Chad Frazier release from scholarship

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 3:58 PM EDT2014-07-29 19:58:33 GMT
    UAB has granted All-Conference USA point guard Chad Frazier a release from his scholarship.More >>
    UAB has granted All-Conference USA point guard Chad Frazier a release from his scholarship.More >>
  • All other Local CollegesMore>>

  • Samford coach Pat Sullivan will not travel with team to TCU

    Samford coach Pat Sullivan will not travel with team to TCU

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 2:59 PM EDT2014-08-27 18:59:15 GMT
    Samford football coach Pat Sullivan will miss Saturday's season opener against TCU. The school announced that Sullivan has been advised against traveling by doctors while he recovers from offseason surgery."Unfortunately I will not be able to make the trip with my Samford team this weekend for our game against TCU," Sullivan said in a statement released through the school. "My doctors have advised me not to travel at this time due to a complication from a surgery earlier this year. We have an...More >>
    Samford football coach Pat Sullivan will miss Saturday's season opener against TCU. The school announced that Sullivan has been advised against traveling by doctors while he recovers from offseason surgery."Unfortunately I will not be able to make the trip with my Samford team this weekend for our game against TCU," Sullivan said in a statement released through the school. "My doctors have advised me not to travel at this time due to a complication from a surgery earlier this year. We have an...More >>
  • No. 8 Michigan State readies defense for opener against JSU

    No. 8 Michigan State readies defense for opener against JSU

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 7:54 PM EDT2014-08-26 23:54:33 GMT
    Mark Dantonio cares more about how Michigan State plays than how many plays Jacksonville State can run with its fast-tempo offense in Friday's season opener for both teams.More >>
    Mark Dantonio cares more about how Michigan State plays than how many plays Jacksonville State can run with its fast-tempo offense in Friday's season opener for both teams.
    More >>
  • TCU to play both QBs in opener against Samford

    TCU to play both QBs in opener against Samford

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 7:45 PM EDT2014-08-26 23:45:15 GMT
    Trevone Boykin is in the same position he was last year with TCU, again part of the unanswered question of who will be the starting quarterback only days before the season opener against Samford.More >>
    Trevone Boykin is in the same position he was last year with TCU, again part of the unanswered question of who will be the starting quarterback only days before the season opener against Samford.
    More >>
  • Latest StoriesMore>>

  • Veterans traveling long distances for care after state budget cuts

    Veterans traveling long distances for care after state budget cuts

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 11:31 PM EDT2014-08-28 03:31:24 GMT
    Budget cuts are causing a new health care crisis for Alabama veterans.  More >>
    Budget cuts are causing a new health care crisis for Alabama veterans.  More >>
  • Cowabunga! Storm sends big waves to California

    Cowabunga! Storm sends big waves to California

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 9:38 PM EDT2014-08-28 01:38:44 GMT
    The surf was churning in Southern California, and even bigger waves were brewing.More >>
    Thundering surf spawned by a Pacific hurricane pounded the Southern California coast Wednesday, causing minor flooding in a low-lying beach town while drawing daredevil surfers and body-boarders into churning, 20-foot...More >>
  • Alabama leads nation in Advanced Placement gains

    Alabama leads nation in Advanced Placement gains

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 9:18 PM EDT2014-08-28 01:18:05 GMT
    Alabama is leading the nation in improvements on Advanced Placement tests used to qualify high school students for college credits. Governor Robert Bentley and State School Superintendent Tommy Bice announced the results of a study in Montgomery. Over the last six years Alabama students have an increase of 136 percent in the number of Advanced Placement exams passed in mathematics, science and English. The national increase over the same period time was 49 percent. The number of qualifying sc...More >>
    Alabama is leading the nation in improvements on Advanced Placement tests used to qualify high school students for college credits. Governor Robert Bentley and State School Superintendent Tommy Bice announced the results of a study in Montgomery. Over the last six years Alabama students have an increase of 136 percent in the number of Advanced Placement exams passed in mathematics, science and English. The national increase over the same period time was 49 percent. The number of qualifying sc...More >>
  • Law enforcement ready to push water safety during Labor Day weekend

    Law enforcement ready to push water safety during Labor Day weekend

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 8:13 PM EDT2014-08-28 00:13:22 GMT
    A young man drowned in Cleburne County Wednesday at Cheaha Lake. The emergency situation encouraged ABC 33/40 to looking into water safety. Law enforcement is thinking safety as we head into the unofficial last weekend of the summer.More >>
    A young man drowned in Cleburne County Wednesday at Cheaha Lake. The emergency situation encouraged ABC 33/40 to looking into water safety. Law enforcement is thinking safety as we head into the unofficial last weekend of the summer.More >>
  • Alabama's Trey DePriest will not play vs West Virginia

    Alabama's Trey DePriest will not play vs West Virginia

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 7:46 PM EDT2014-08-27 23:46:55 GMT
    Starting linebacker Trey DePriest will not play in Alabama's season opener after he was suspended "for a minor NCAA infraction". Alabama coach Nick Saban said Reggie Ragland and Reuben Foster will be the starting middle linebackers when the Tide play West Virginia on Saturday. Saban said DePriest will be available for the second game, against Florida Atlantic.DePriest started all 13 games last year and is a first-team All-SEC preseason pick. Alabama plays West Virginia in the Chick-fil-A Kick...More >>
    Starting linebacker Trey DePriest will not play in Alabama's season opener after he was suspended "for a minor NCAA infraction". Alabama coach Nick Saban said Reggie Ragland and Reuben Foster will be the starting middle linebackers when the Tide play West Virginia on Saturday. Saban said DePriest will be available for the second game, against Florida Atlantic.DePriest started all 13 games last year and is a first-team All-SEC preseason pick. Alabama plays West Virginia in the Chick-fil-A Kick...More >>
  • East Birmingham mother of three pleading for help

    East Birmingham mother of three pleading for help

    East Birmingham mother of three pleading for help

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 7:06 PM EDT2014-08-27 23:06:31 GMT
    Whitney Taggart never thought she and her three children would be in this predicament since moving to Birmingham. Taggart doesn't have a job. Her house suffered damage due to a fire earlier this month. Weeks after the flames, the electricity still doesn't work and there's no running water.More >>
    Whitney Taggart never thought she and her three children would be in this predicament since moving to Birmingham. Taggart doesn't have a job. Her house suffered damage due to a fire earlier this month. Weeks after the flames, the electricity still doesn't work and there's no running water.More >>
  • What's up with that? Status of Birmingham's bond referendum and roads

    What's up with that? Status of Birmingham's bond referendum and roads

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 7:01 PM EDT2014-08-27 23:01:25 GMT
    In ABC 33/40's daily "What's Up with That Post" on Facebook, a viewer asked about the bumpy conditions on some of Birmingham's roads.More >>
    In ABC 33/40's daily "What's Up with That Post" on Facebook, a viewer asked about the bumpy conditions on some of Birmingham's roads.
    More >>
  • Josh Gordon: Suspension for substance abuse upheld by NFL; Browns lose star WR for 2014 season

    Josh Gordon: Suspension for substance abuse upheld by NFL; Browns lose star WR for 2014 season

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 6:52 PM EDT2014-08-27 22:52:18 GMT
    Josh Gordon's wait is over, so is his 2014 season. The star wide receiver's career is now in peril.More >>
    Josh Gordon's wait is over, so is his 2014 season. The star wide receiver's career is now in peril.
    More >>