|Alabama Crimson Tide football|
|Athletic director||Mal Moore|
|Head coach||Nick Saban|
|Home stadium||Bryant-Denny Stadium|
|Stadium surface||Natural grass|
|Division|| SEC Western Division|
|Postseason bowl record||33[b]–22–3|
|Claimed national titles||13|
|Conference titles||26 (22 SEC)|
|Colors||Crimson and White|
|Fight song||Yea Alabama|
|Mascot||Elephant (Big Al)|
|Marching band||Million Dollar Band|
|Rivals|| Auburn Tigers |
The Alabama Crimson Tide football program is a college football team that represents the University of Alabama (variously Alabama, UA, or 'Bama). The team currently competes in NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision as a member of the Southeastern Conference. The Crimson Tide is one of the most storied and decorated programs in NCAA history. Since beginning play in 1892, the program has claimed 13 national championships, and is tied with Notre Dame with eight poll-era wire (AP or Coaches) national titles. From 1958 to 1982, the team was led by Hall of Fame coach Paul "Bear" Bryant, who won six national championships with the program. Despite multiple national and conference championships, it was not until 2009 that an Alabama player received a Heisman Trophy, when running back Mark Ingram became the university's first winner.
Alabama has 802 victories[a][b] in NCAA Division I, has won 26 conference championships (4 Southern Conference and 22 SEC championships) and has made an NCAA-record 58 postseason bowl appearances. Other NCAA records include 22 10-game win streaks, and 16 seasons with a 10-0 start. The program has 31 10–win seasons, and has 33[b] bowl victories, both NCAA records. The Crimson Tide leads the SEC West Division with seven division titles and seven appearances in the SEC Championship Game. Alabama holds a winning record against every current and former SEC school. The Associated Press (AP) currently ranks Alabama 5th in all-time final AP Poll appearances, with 47.
Alabama currently plays their home games at Bryant-Denny Stadium, located on the campus in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. With a capacity of 101,821, Bryant-Denny is the 7th largest non-racing stadium in the world and the fifth largest stadium in the United States. 
Head coaching history Edit
Alabama has had 28 head coaches since organized football began in 1892. Adopting the nickname of the Crimson Tide after the 1907 season, the team has played more than 1,100 games in their 114 seasons. In that time, 12 coaches have led the Crimson Tide in postseason bowl games: Wallace Wade, Frank Thomas, Harold Drew, Paul "Bear" Bryant, Ray Perkins, Bill Curry, Gene Stallings, Mike DuBose, Dennis Franchione, Mike Shula, Joe Kines, and Nick Saban. Eight of those coaches also won conference championships: Wade, Thomas, Drew, Bryant, Curry, Stallings, DuBose, and Saban. During their tenures, Wade, Thomas, Bryant, Stallings, and Saban all won national championships with the Crimson Tide.
Of the 27 different head coaches who have led the Crimson Tide Wade, Thomas, Bryant, and Stallings have been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. The current head coach is Nick Saban, who was hired in January 2007.
Early history (1892–1921) Edit
University of Alabama law student William G. Little learned how to play American football while attending prep school in Andover, Massachusetts and began teaching the sport to fellow Alabama students in early 1892. Later in the year, the school formed an official team of 19 players, with Little as captain and E. B. Beaumont as head coach. Among those also on the team were William B. Bankhead, future U.S. Speaker of the House, and Bibb Graves, future governor of Alabama. The team was referred to as the "Cadets", the "Crimson White", or simply as "the varsity".
On November 11, 1892, the team played its first game at a baseball park in Birmingham, Alabama, winning 56–0 against a team composed of players from local Birmingham-area high schools. The team played only one game during the 1897 and 1898 seasons because of a ban restricting student athletes from traveling away from campus. The team resumed play in 1899 after the ban was lifted due to fan and student outcry. Following the 1907 season, the team adopted the "Crimson Tide" nickname. The school did not field a team in 1918 because of World War I, but resumed play once again in 1919.
Rise to prominence (1922–1957) Edit
Shortly after the end of the 1922 season in which he led Alabama in the victory over Penn, head coach Xen C. Scott died of cancer, and Brown University alum Wallace Wade was hired as the new head coach. Intent on building a dynasty after Wade led the team to the Rose Bowl win over Washington, the team's first national championship, and "the game that changed the South." Athletics director George Denny took advantage of the team's newfound popularity and began advertising the University of Alabama in metropolitan New York City newspapers. Students, football players and fans alike from the Northeast began enrolling at Alabama at such a rate that by 1930, over one-third of the student body was from out-of-state. Wade led the Crimson Tide to two more national titles before taking the head coaching position at Duke in 1931.
Frank Thomas, a former quarterback for a Notre Dame squad led by Knute Rockne, was hired to replace Wade. Thomas led the team to continued success and two more national championships before health issues forced him to retire after a 14–year tenure as head coach of the program, which did not field a team in 1943 because of World War II. Among the players that Thomas coached were Harry Gilmer, Don Hutson, and Paul "Bear" Bryant.
Harold "Red" Drew followed Thomas as head coach and led the team to a 54–28–7 record over the next eight seasons, though never winning a national championship. Drew's successor, J.B. "Ears" Whitworth, led the Crimson Tide to its worst three-year stretch in school history, posting a 4–24–2 record before being fired following the 1957 season.
Paul "Bear" Bryant era (1958–1982) Edit
Paul William "Bear" Bryant came to the Crimson Tide program in December 1957, after leaving his head coaching position at Texas A&M. On December 8, five days after leaving A&M, Bryant was asked why he left for Alabama. Bryant replied, "Mama called, and when Mama calls, then you just have to come running." Bryant entered an Alabama program which had not had a winning record in four seasons. However, in his first season, Bryant led Alabama to a 5–4–1 record—one more win than Alabama had in the previous three seasons. In his fourth season, Bryant led the Crimson Tide to their sixth national championship which included Bryant's first bowl victory with Alabama. Between 1961 to 1966, Alabama went 60-5-1, which included three national championships, four Southeastern Conference Championships, two undefeated seasons, and six bowl berths.
Between 1970–1979, the Crimson Tide was one of the most dominant teams in college football. During the decade the program won eight conference titles and three national championships. The very first game of the decade was notable, as the team was thoroughly defeated by the USC Trojans in Birmingham 42–21. This is the game that is generally credited as the catalyst to end segregation in college football. The following season, John Mitchell, an African-American transfer from Eastern Arizona Junior College, played in the rematch, a game that Alabama won 17–10 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. In that game, Mitchell became the first black player to start for the Tide.
Bryant's final game as head coach of Alabama came in the 1982 Liberty Bowl. Bryant's retirement made the Liberty Bowl one of the most covered games that season as many news stations and newspapers sent reporters to cover the game. Alabama earned a 21–15 victory over Illinois.
During his tenure at Alabama, Bryant led Alabama to a 232–46–9 record. His achievements included six national championships, 13 Southeastern Conference titles, and 11 bowl victories. In his 25 seasons, he led the Crimson Tide to 24 consecutive bowl appearances. At the time of his retirement, Bryant had recorded an NCAA record 323 wins.
Bryant once said if he retired that he would "probably croak in a week" and said, "I imagine I'd go straight to the graveyard." Four weeks after coaching his final game, Bear Bryant died of a heart attack on January 26, 1983.
Perkins-Curry era (1983–1989) Edit
Former New York Giants head coach Ray Perkins replaced Bryant, under whom he played for in the early 1960s. In his first season head coach, Alabama finished the regular season at 7–4, just as it had done in the previous year. In the Sun Bowl, Alabama upset the #5-ranked SMU Mustangs 28–7. His second season was far less successful, as Alabama endured their first losing season in 28 years with a 5–6 record, failing to qualify for a bowl game. In 1985, the team fared much better than the previous season, finishing with a 9–2–1 record. Following a dramatic victory over Auburn, the Tide went on to defeat Southern Cal 28–3 in the Aloha Bowl. The 1986 season, Alabama went 10–3 as they defeated Notre Dame for the first time in school history, and ended a losing streak versus rival Tennessee. In the season finale in the Sun Bowl, Alabama won 28–6 over the Washington Huskies. Perkins accumulated a 32–15–1 record during his tenure before deciding to leave for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Perkins was succeeded by his former Baltimore Colts teammate and Georgia Tech head coach Bill Curry. Curry led the Tide to three winning seasons, including three straight victories over Joe Paterno and Penn State and a 10–0 start to the 1989 season. Curry accumulated a record of 26-10 over three seasons at Alabama. However, tensions within the athletic department and three straight losses against arch-rival Auburn led Curry to resign so that he could go on to become head coach for Kentucky. Curry is currently the head coach of the Georgia State Panthers.
Gene Stallings era (1990–1996) Edit
Alabama once again sought someone with ties to Bryant by hiring Gene Stallings, who had been recently fired as head coach of the Phoenix Cardinals. Stallings had been a member of the Junction Boys, a group of players who trained under Bryant during his tenure at Texas A&M. In his first season, the Tide lost their first three games, but rebounded to finish off the season with a 7–5 record which included a berth in the Fiesta Bowl and a defeat to Louisville in a 34–7 rout. The following season proved to be much more successful as Alabama finished with an 11–1 record. After a 35–0 blowout loss to the Florida Gators, the team finished off the regular season with nine consecutive victories, before defeating Colorado 30–25 in the Blockbuster Bowl.
In just his third season as head coach, Alabama was unbeaten in the regular season, and recorded three shutout victories en route to the inaugural SEC Championship Game. Alabama was able to avoid an upset with a late interception by Antonio Langham, who returned it for a touchdown to secure a 28–21 victory. With the win, Alabama was invited to the 1993 Sugar Bowl to face the unbeaten Miami Hurricanes, who entered with a 29-game winning streak and that year's Heisman Trophy winner, quarterback Gino Torretta. Despite Miami being favored by 8 points, the Crimson Tide's defense proved to be too much as the Tide routed the Hurricanes 34–13 and finished a perfect 13-0, allowing them to claim their 12th national championship—the first since the Bryant era.
The Crimson Tide were forced to forfeit eight victories and one tie achieved during the 9–3–1 1993 season in games participated in by senior cornerback Antonio Langham. The NCAA discovered before Alabama's bowl game that year that Langham had violated NCAA rules by signing with an agent after the previous season. Alabama was in contention for another national title in 1994 before losing the SEC Championship Game to Florida, finishing 12-1 after defeating Ohio State in the Citrus Bowl. Though going 8–3 in 1995, Alabama was not allowed to play in a bowl game, due to a probationary stipulation resulting from the Langham incident. Stallings led the team to a 10–3 record and a victory over Michigan in the Outback Bowl during the 1996 season before retiring.
DuBose-Franchione-Shula era (1997–2006) Edit
Following Gene Stallings's retirement in 1996, defensive coordinator Mike DuBose was promoted to the head coaching position. In his third season, DuBose won the SEC Championship. With the success, Alabama began their 2000 season as high as #3 in some polls. The expectations went unfulfilled as the Tide slumped to a 3–8 record. Following the season, DuBose was replaced by an up-and-coming coach from TCU, Dennis Franchione.
Franchione led Alabama to two winning seasons in 2001 and 2002, with a combined 17–8 record. Late in the 2002 season, rumors began to surface about Franchione expressing desire to leave Alabama for other coaching jobs, including Big 12 schools Kansas and Texas A&M. On December 5, 2002, Franchione was formally introduced as the head coach at Texas A&M.
On December 18, 2002, Alabama announced that Washington State head coach Mike Price would be the next coach for the Crimson Tide program. However, in May 2003, Price was removed from his position as the head coach, following a scandal. Less than a week later, Alabama hired Mike Shula, a former Alabama quarterback and then-quarterbacks coach for the Miami Dolphins. Alabama had reportedly been searching mainly for former Alabama players, including considering Sylvester Croom.
With the difficult offseason, the Shula-led Crimson Tide finished 4–9 in 2003. Bama's 2004 team finished the regular season with a 6–6 record and made their first bowl appearance in three seasons. It was also the first season the team began playing all their home games exclusively at Bryant-Denny Stadium. In previous years, the Tide had played many of their biggest home games at Legion Field in Birmingham. During the offseason, Alabama once again was able to gain a "full" recruiting class, following a probation by the NCAA which occurred in 2001 resulting from recruiting violations that occurred during Dubose's tenure. In Shula's third season, Alabama rolled to a 10–2 record, ending with a 13–10 victory in the 2006 Cotton Bowl. However, the following season, Alabama struggled to find consistency. The team ended with a 6–7 overall record, losing every road game of the season. Shula was terminated as head coach of the program, having been the only head coach at Alabama to lose four consecutive games to Auburn.
Nick Saban era (2007–present)Edit
On January 3, 2007, Nick Saban left the NFL's Miami Dolphins and accepted an offer worth US$32 million guaranteed for eight years to be the next Crimson Tide head coach. In his first season, Saban led the Crimson Tide to a 7–6 record. A promising 6-2 start gave way to ending the regular season with four straight losses including an upset loss to Louisiana-Monroe. The team rebounded in its final game, defeating Colorado in the Independence Bowl.
Alabama greatly improved in the following season, becoming the first SEC football team in history to post a 12–0 regular season record (followed by both Florida and Alabama in 2009) and climbing to its first #1 ranking in 16 years, before finishing with back-to-back losses in the SEC Championship Game and the Sugar Bowl to finish the year at 12-2.
In 2009, Nick Saban led Alabama to its second consecutive undefeated regular season (12–0), and added an SEC Championship Game victory over #1 ranked Florida Gators to improve to 13-0. On January 7, 2010, Alabama beat Texas 37–21 in the 2010 BCS National Championship Game, finishing the season 14-0 and winning Alabama its 13th national championship. Saban joined Pop Warner as the only coach to win National Championships at two different FBS schools.
Saban's current official record at Alabama is 38–11 (43-11 on the field, but 5 wins from the 2007 season were vacated).
Bold indicates national championship.
National championships Edit
National championships in NCAA FBS college football are debated as the NCAA does not officially award the championship. Despite not naming an official National Champion, the NCAA provides lists of championships awarded by organizations it recognizes. According to the official NCAA 2009 Division I Football Records Book, "During the last 138 years, there have been more than 30 selectors of national champions using polls, historical research and mathematical rating systems. Beginning in 1936, the Associated Press began the best-known and most widely circulated poll of sportswriters and broadcasters. Before 1936, national champions were determined by historical research and retroactive ratings and polls. [...] The criteria for being included in this historical list of poll selectors is that the poll be national in scope, either through distribution in newspaper, television, radio and/or computer online."
The University of Alabama 2009 Official Football Media Guide states that Alabama had 12 national championships prior to winning the 2010 BCS National Championship. The 2009 title brings the total number of national championships claimed by Alabama to 13. In addition to the championships claimed by the university, the NCAA lists Alabama as receiving a championship for the 1945, 1966, 1975, and 1977 college football seasons, however those championships are not claimed by Alabama. Eight of Alabama's national championships were awarded by the wire-services (AP and Coaches' Poll) since their inception.
In the 1980s, then-Alabama Sports Information Director Wayne Atcheson added five national championship teams (1925, 1926, 1930, 1934, 1941) -- recognized prior to the modern era—to the University's Football Media Guide. According to Atcheson, he made the effort in the context of disputed titles being claimed by other schools, and "to make Alabama football look the best it could look." Though the claim was made in the spirit of competition with other claimants, Atcheson maintains that the titles he included are the school's rightful claims.
National championship seasons Edit
- 1925 — The 1925 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Wallace Wade, completed the regular season 9–0–0, winning the Southern Conference championship. Alabama was then invited to play Washington in the January 1, 1926 Rose Bowl. Coach Wade's team initially fell behind the undefeated Huskies, but rallied in the second half to defeat Washington 20–19. The outstanding player of the game was Johnny Mack Brown. The 1925 Alabama football team finished the season with a 10–0–0 record and was selected national champions by the Football Annual, Billingsley, and Helms Athletic Foundation.
- 1926 — The 1926 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Wallace Wade, completed the regular season 9–0–0, winning the Southern Conference championship. Alabama was then invited to play Stanford in the January 1, 1927 Rose Bowl. Coach Wade's team tied the Indians 7–7 to finish the season 9–0–1. The outstanding player of the game was Fred Pickhard. The 1926 Alabama football team was selected national champions by Billingsley and the Helms Athletic Foundation, retroactively.
- 1930 — The 1930 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Wallace Wade, completed the regular season 9–0–0, winning the Southern Conference championship. Alabama was then invited to play Washington State in the January 1, 1931 Rose Bowl. Coach Wade's team defeated the Cougars 24–0 to finish the season 10–0–0. The outstanding player of the game was John Campbell. The 1930 Alabama football team tied with Notre Dame as national champions in the Davis poll.
- 1934 — The 1934 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Frank Thomas, completed the regular season 9–0–0, winning the Southeastern Conference championship. Alabama was then invited to play Stanford in the January 1, 1935 Rose Bowl. Coach Thomas' team defeated the Indians 29–13 to finish the season 10–0–0. The outstanding player of the game was Millard "Dixie" Howell. The 1934 Alabama football team was selected national champions by Dunkel, Houlgate, Williamson, and Football Thesaurus. The University of Alabama honored Ben McLeod, Jr., the 95–year–old former backup End of the 1934 team at the September 6, 2008 Alabama–Tulane game.
- 1941 — The 1941 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Frank Thomas, completed the regular season 8–2–0. Alabama's squad finished 3rd in the Southeastern Conference after suffering losses to Mississippi State and Vanderbilt. Alabama was then invited to play Texas A&M in the January 1, 1942 Cotton Bowl Classic. Coach Thomas' team defeated the Aggies 29–21 to finish the season 9–2–0. The outstanding players of the game were Holt Rast, Don Whitmire, and Jimmy Nelson. The squad was selected national champions by the Houlgate Poll and published in the nationally syndicated Football Thesaurus. The Tide finished the season ranked 20th in the AP Poll.
- 1961 — The 1961 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Bear Bryant, completed the regular season 10–0–0, winning the Southeastern Conference championship. Led by quarterback Pat Trammell, linebacker Lee Roy Jordan and two–way lineman Billy Neighbors, Alabama outscored their opponents 297–25. Alabama was then invited to play the #9–ranked Arkansas Razorbacks in the January 1, 1962 Sugar Bowl. Coach Bryant's team defeated the Razorbacks 10–3 to finish the season 11–0–0. The outstanding player of the game was Mike Fracchia. The 1961 Alabama football team was selected national champions by the AP and Coaches' Polls.
- 1964 — The 1964 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Bear Bryant, completed the regular season 10–0–0, winning the Southeastern Conference championship. Alabama was led by quarterback Joe Namath. Alabama was then invited to play the Texas Longhorns in the January 1, 1965 Orange Bowl. Coach Bryant's team lost to the Longhorns 21–17 to finish the season 10–1–0. The outstanding player of the game was Joe Namath. The 1964 Alabama football team was selected national champions by the AP and Coaches' Polls prior to bowl games. Because of the controversy with Alabama being selected over undefeated Arkansas, the AP Poll decided to wait until after the bowl games to select their champion in the 1965 season.
- 1965 — The 1965 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Bear Bryant, completed the regular season 8–1–1, winning the Southeastern Conference championship. The Tide lost to Georgia and tied Tennessee during the regular season. Alabama was then invited to play Nebraska in the January 1, 1966 Orange Bowl. Coach Bryant's team defeated the Cornhuskers 39–28 to finish the season 9–1–1. The outstanding player of the game was Steve Sloan. The 1965 Alabama football team was selected national champions by the AP Poll.
- 1973 — The 1973 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Bear Bryant, completed the regular season 11–0–0, winning the Southeastern Conference championship. Alabama was then invited to play Notre Dame in the December 31, 1973 Sugar Bowl. Coach Bryant's team lost to the Fighting Irish 24–23 to finish the season 11–1–0. The 1973 Alabama football team was selected national champions in the final Coaches' Poll prior to the bowl games. Because of the controversy after the bowl loss, the Coaches' Poll began selecting their champion after the bowl games starting in 1974. The AP poll placed Alabama 4th, and selected Notre Dame as its top team after the season.
- 1978 — The 1978 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Bear Bryant, completed the regular season 10–1–0, winning the Southeastern Conference championship. The Tide defeated #10–ranked Nebraska 20–3, and defeated #11–ranked Missouri 38–20, and lost to Southern Cal during the regular season. Alabama was then invited to play #1–ranked Penn State in the January 1, 1979 Sugar Bowl. Coach Bryant's team defeated the Nittany Lions 14–7 to finish the season 11–1–0. The outstanding player of the game was linebacker Barry Krauss. The 1978 Alabama football team was selected national champions by the AP Poll.
- 1979 — The 1979 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Bear Bryant, completed the regular season 11–0–0, winning the Southeastern Conference championship. The Tide defeated #18–ranked Tennessee 27–17, and defeated #14–ranked Auburn University 25–18 during the regular season. Alabama was then invited to play #6–ranked Arkansas in the January 1, 1980 Sugar Bowl. Coach Bryant's team defeated the Razorbacks 24–9 to finish the season 12–0–0. The outstanding player of the game was running back Major Ogilvie. The 1979 Alabama football team was selected national champions by the AP and Coaches' Polls.
- 1992 — The 1992 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Gene Stallings, completed the regular season 11–0–0. They then defeated #12–ranked Florida in the inaugural SEC Championship Game, defeating the Gators 28–21; the win gave Alabama its 20th SEC title and a record of 12–0–0. Alabama was then invited to play #1–ranked Miami, led by Heisman trophy winner Gino Torretta, in the January 1, 1993 Sugar Bowl. Coach Stallings' team defeated the Hurricanes 34–13 to finish the season 13–0–0. The outstanding player of the game was Derrick Lassic. The 1992 Alabama football team was selected national champions by the AP and Coaches' Polls.
- 2009 — The 2009 Alabama Crimson Tide football team, coached by Nick Saban, finished with a 12–0 regular season. In the 12 wins, the Crimson Tide defeated four teams that were ranked at the time, including an opening day victory over #7 Virginia Tech in Atlanta. The team headed back to the Georgia Dome in December to face off against #1 Florida in the SEC Championship Game. They defeated the Gators 32–13 in a rematch of the previous year's championship. Alabama then traveled to Pasadena to face #2-ranked Texas in the 2010 BCS National Championship Game at the Rose Bowl. Alabama's Heisman winning running back Mark Ingram rushed for 116 yards and two touchdowns in a 37–21 win. This was Alabama's first victory over Texas (1-7-1). Ingram was named the game's offensive MVP in Alabama's first BCS victory. The 2009 Alabama football team was selected national champions by the AP and Coaches' Polls. The 2009 squad became the first FBS division team to defeat six teams ranked in the AP Top 25 during one season and received a record six first team AP All-America selections.
Conference championships Edit
Alabama has won a total of 26 conference championships, this includes 4 Southern Conference and 22 SEC Championships. Alabama captured its 4 Southern Conference titles in 1924, 1925, 1926, and 1930. Alabama captured the first SEC title in 1933 and has won a total of 22 SEC Championships (1933, 1934, 1937, 1945, 1953, 1961, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1989, 1992, 1999, and 2009). The school has won more SEC football titles than any other school, with three coming since the conference split into separate divisions and added a Championship Game. Alabama is the only SEC school to win an SEC Championship in every decade since the conference was founded in 1933.
Individual award winners Edit
First team All-Americans Edit
Every year, several publications release lists of the their ideal "team." The athletes on these lists are referred to as All-Americans. The NCAA recognizes five All-American lists. They are the Associated Press, American Football Coaches Association (AFCA), Football Writers Association of America (FWAA), Sporting News, and the Walter Camp Football Foundation. Alabama has had 98 players honored 114 times as first team All-Americans (44 consensus) in its history, including 12 players honored twice and two players (Cornelius Bennett and Woodrow Lowe) who were honored three times.
- Javier Arenas (AFCA, Associated Press)
- Terrence Cody (Associated Press, FWAA, Walter Camp)
- Mark Ingram (AFCA, Associated Press, FWAA, Sporting News, Walter Camp)
- Mike Johnson (AFCA, Associated Press, Sporting News, Walter Camp)
- Rolando McClain (AFCA, Associated Press, FWAA, Sporting News, Walter Camp)
- Leigh Tiffin (Associated Press)
College Football Hall of Fame inductees Edit
In 1951, the College Football Hall of Fame opened in South Bend, Indiana. Since then, Alabama has had 19 players and 4 former coaches inducted into the Hall of Fame. Alabama had two members inducted into the inaugural 1951 class—Don Hutson and Frank Thomas.
Individual award winnersEdit
Heisman Trophy Edit
On December 12, 2009, Mark Ingram became Alabama's first Heisman Trophy winner. In the closest race ever, he edged out Stanford running back Toby Gerhart by 28 points. The previous best finish for an Alabama player occurred in 1993, when David Palmer finished 3rd in the Heisman voting, finishing more than 2,000 points behind runaway winner Charlie Ward.
|1962||Lee Roy Jordan||LB||4th|
SEC Legends Edit
Starting in 1994, the Southeastern Conference has annually honored one former football player from each of the twelve SEC member schools as an "SEC Legend." Through 2010, the following seventeen former Crimson Tide football players have been honored as SEC Legends.
The main rivalry of the Crimson Tide is against its in-state rival, Auburn University. The rivalry is considered to be one of the best and most hard-fought rivalries in all of sports. The outcome of the game generally determines "bragging rights" in the state of Alabama until the following contest. Due to the intensity of the rivalry, many families, marriages, and other groups are split over their respective teams. The game may also have implications as to which team will represent the SEC Western Division in the SEC Championship Game. On February 22, 1893, at Lakeview Park in Birmingham, Auburn were victorious in the first ever Iron Bowl, 32–22. The series was suspended after the 1907 contest, due to violence and financial complications. In 1944, Auburn suggested to reopen the series, though the Board of Trustees at Alabama rejected. However, the series was finally resumed in 1948—Alabama crushing the Tigers 55–0, which is still the largest margin of victory in the series. In the following contest, Auburn shocked Alabama with a 14–13 victory, which is credited with helping revive the series. For many years, the contest was held at Legion Field in Birmingham, before the teams began alternating between Bryant-Denny Stadium, in Tuscaloosa, and Jordan–Hare Stadium, in Auburn. Alabama currently leads the series at 40–34–1. In 2009, Alabama defeated Auburn 26–21 for its first victory in Jordan–Hare since 2001. In their most recent meeting in 2010, Alabama lost to Auburn 27–28 at home, as Auburn rallied from a 24–0 second quarter deficit. The comeback became the largest in both the series and Auburn history.
Despite the heated in-state rivalry with Auburn, Bear Bryant was more adamant about defeating his rivals to the north, the Tennessee Volunteers. The series is named the Third Saturday in October, the traditional calendar date on which the game was played. Despite the name, the game has only been played on the third Saturday five times between 1995–2007. The first game between the two sides was played in 1901 in Birmingham, ending in a 6–6 tie. From 1902 to 1913, Alabama dominated the series, only losing once, and never allowing a touchdown by the Volunteers. Beginning in 1928, the rivalry was first played on its traditional date and began to be a challenge for the Tide as Robert Neyland began challenging Alabama for their perennial spot on top of the conference standings. In the 1950s, Jim Goostree, the head trainer for Alabama, began another tradition as he began handing out cigars following a victory over the Volunteers.
Between 1971–1981, Alabama held an eleven-game winning streak over the Volunteers and, between 1986–1994, a nine-game unbeaten streak. However, following Alabama's streak, Tennessee responded with a seven-game winning streak from 1995–2001. Alabama has won the last four meetings from 2007-2010. Alabama won the most recent meeting 41–10 in Knoxville, and leads the series 48–38–7.
A rivalry within the SEC Western Division occurs yearly between Alabama and the LSU Tigers. Starting in 1895, the Tigers were victorious 12-6 in the first meeting. The teams did not regularly meet until the mid-1960s, during Alabama's dominance of the SEC. Between 1971–1981, the Crimson Tide won 11 consecutive times. In the 1969 game, LSU defeated Alabama 20–15 in Baton Rouge. Alabama did not lose again in Baton Rouge until 2000.
In 2007, the meeting was more heated following Alabama's hiring of head coach Nick Saban, who previously coached at LSU. With the hiring, many media outlets dubbed the 2007 meeting as the "Saban Bowl". The Crimson Tide lost the first "Saban Bowl" in 2007, won the 2008 and 2009 meetings only to lose in Baton Rouge in 2010. Alabama leads the head-to-head series at 45–24–5.
All-time record vs. Current SEC teamsEdit
This is a partial list of the last ten bowl games Alabama competed in. For the full Alabama bowl game history, see List of Alabama Crimson Tide bowl games.