Preview capsule: No. 1 Alabama at No. 4 Auburn - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Preview capsule: No. 1 Alabama at No. 4 Auburn

Posted: Updated:

Matchup:  No. 1 Alabama (11-0, 7-0 SEC) at No. 4 Auburn (10-1, 6-1)

Time:  2:30 p.m.

TV:  CBS

Line:  Alabama by 10 1/2.

Last meeting:  Nov. 24, 2012 -- Alabama 49, Auburn 0 (Tuscaloosa, Ala.)

Series Record: Alabama leads 42-34-1.

WHAT'S AT STAKE

Bragging rights, the SEC West title and a spot in the league championship game are on the line. Alabama and Auburn are both also trying to keep their national title hopes alive in a state that has claimed the last four BCS championships.

KEY MATCHUP

Auburn's running game versus Alabama's run defense. The Tigers rank second nationally in rushing, averaging 320.3 yards on the ground with 37 touchdowns. Tre Mason is the SEC's No. 2 rusher and quarterback Nick Marshall ranks sixth and keeps defenses guessing with the zone read. Crimson Tide linebacker C.J. Mosley leads a run defense that is fifth in the nation, allowing 91.3 rushing yards per game with five touchdowns.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Alabama: QB AJ McCarron. The Heisman Trophy candidate doesn't post gaudy stats — except for the 36-2 career record. McCarron does have 23 touchdowns against five interceptions. He faces a defense that just yielded 415 passing yards to Georgia's Aaron Murray but has been effective at harassing quarterbacks. Alabama has allowed two sacks in the past 29 quarters.

Auburn: Marshall. Much of his production in the second half of the season has come on the ground, but Marshall is actually averaging more yards total offense in SEC games (277.7) than McCarron (244.9). All four of his 200-yard passing games have come against SEC defenses, and he will almost certainly have to have some success through the air in his toughest test yet.

FACTS & FIGURES

This is only the second top-five Iron Bowl matchup. No. 3 Alabama beat No. 5 Auburn 31-7 in 1971. The last time the teams had one combined loss or fewer was 1994 when Alabama was 10-0 and Auburn 9-0-1. ... The Tigers are the highest ranked opponent Alabama has faced in the regular season when ranked No. 1. The previous high was No. 5 LSU last season. ... Auburn is 3-8 against No. 1 teams and 1-2 at Jordan-Hare Stadium. ... Alabama hasn't given up an offensive touchdown in the last two meetings, winning 49-0 and 42-14 while allowing one special teams TD and a defensive score. ... This is the first season Auburn has played both Georgia and Alabama at home.

  • UAB SportsMore>>

  • 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 >>
  • Roddy White gets three-year extension from Atlanta Falcons

    Roddy White gets three-year extension from Atlanta Falcons

    Thursday, July 24 2014 4:58 PM EDT2014-07-24 20:58:02 GMT
    Roddy White is set to sign a contract extension that will keep him in Atlanta for four more seasons.More >>
    Roddy White is set to sign a contract extension that will keep him in Atlanta for four more seasons.More >>
  • Latest StoriesMore>>

  • Windows of Downtown Ensley

    Windows of Downtown Ensley

    Thursday, August 21 2014 9:33 PM EDT2014-08-22 01:33:21 GMT
    Local art is helping to renew downtown Ensley. In September you will be able to walk down 19th Street and see for yourself.Last May, the Ensley Merchant Association and REV Birmingham announced plans to enhance 19th Street with an arts program called The Windows of Downtown Ensley. Store windows will showcase original artwork from area artists at participating merchants each month. The initiative is being organized by Kuumba Community Art, an Ensley-based art program with special focus on you...More >>
    Local art is helping to renew downtown Ensley. In September you will be able to walk down 19th Street and see for yourself.Last May, the Ensley Merchant Association and REV Birmingham announced plans to enhance 19th Street with an arts program called The Windows of Downtown Ensley. Store windows will showcase original artwork from area artists at participating merchants each month. The initiative is being organized by Kuumba Community Art, an Ensley-based art program with special focus on you...More >>
  • Irondale police officer explains his department's policies responding to calls

    Irondale police officer explains his department's policies responding to calls

    Thursday, August 21 2014 9:25 PM EDT2014-08-22 01:25:38 GMT
    There are a lot of moving parts when an officer responds to a call for help. The officer has to pay attention to what's happening around him, who needs the help and who's causing the problem. All police departments train their men and women. It's up to them to use that training.More >>
    There are a lot of moving parts when an officer responds to a call for help. The officer has to pay attention to what's happening around him, who needs the help and who's causing the problem. All police departments train their men and women. It's up to them to use that training.More >>
  • 2 Kentucky firefighters injured while helping college students take ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

    2 Kentucky firefighters injured while helping college students take ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

    Thursday, August 21 2014 7:31 PM EDT2014-08-21 23:31:34 GMT
    Police in Kentucky say two firefighters were seriously injured when the fire truck's ladder got too close to a power line as they helped college students take part in an ice bucket challenge.More >>
    Police in Kentucky say two firefighters were seriously injured when the fire truck's ladder got too close to a power line as they helped college students take part in an ice bucket challenge.
    More >>
  • American Ebola doc: 'I am thrilled to be alive'

    American Ebola doc: 'I am thrilled to be alive'

    Thursday, August 21 2014 7:25 PM EDT2014-08-21 23:25:34 GMT
    The Atlanta hospital where two American aid workers were brought after getting infected with the Ebola virus will hold a news conference to discuss their discharge.More >>
    Calling it a "miraculous day," an American doctor infected with Ebola left his isolation unit and warmly hugged his doctors and nurses on Thursday, showing the world that he poses no public health threat one month after...More >>
  • Vestavia Hills schools launch new drug testing program

    Vestavia Hills schools launch new drug testing program

    Thursday, August 21 2014 6:31 PM EDT2014-08-21 22:31:52 GMT
    Hundreds of parents are taking a step to make sure their child says no to drugs. Vestavia Hills middle and high schools have launched a drug testing program.More >>
    Hundreds of parents are taking a step to make sure their child says no to drugs. Vestavia Hills middle and high schools have launched a drug testing program.More >>
  • Gov. Nixon taking National Guard out of Ferguson

    Gov. Nixon taking National Guard out of Ferguson

    Thursday, August 21 2014 6:27 PM EDT2014-08-21 22:27:00 GMT
    It's been a quieter night in Ferguson, Missouri. Some demonstrators returned to the streets Wednesday evening to protest the fatal shooting of a black 18-year-old by a white officer, but in diminished numbers.More >>
    Gov. Jay Nixon on Thursday ordered the Missouri National Guard to begin withdrawing from Ferguson, where nightly scenes of unrest have erupted since a white police officer fatally shot an unarmed black 18-year-old nearly...More >>
  • Ebola doctor: 'I am thrilled to be alive'

    Ebola doctor: 'I am thrilled to be alive'

    Thursday, August 21 2014 6:25 PM EDT2014-08-21 22:25:04 GMT
    Calling it a "miraculous day," an American doctor infected with Ebola left his isolation unit and warmly hugged his doctors and nurses on Thursday, showing the world that he poses no public health threat one month after getting sick with the virus.More >>
    Calling it a "miraculous day," an American doctor infected with Ebola left his isolation unit and warmly hugged his doctors and nurses on Thursday, showing the world that he poses no public health threat one month after getting sick with the virus.
    More >>
  • No easy or cheap solution to ridding Birmingham of abandoned buildings

    No easy or cheap solution to ridding Birmingham of abandoned buildings

    Thursday, August 21 2014 5:50 PM EDT2014-08-21 21:50:42 GMT
    Birmingham is an older city with a lot of aging properties. Birmingham Fire Marshall C.W. Mardis believes we will continue to see more and more vacant buildings in the next few years. .More >>
    Birmingham is an older city with a lot of aging properties. Birmingham Fire Marshall C.W. Mardis believes we will continue to see more and more vacant buildings in the next few years. .More >>