FINAL: No. 1 Alabama 38, No. 13 MSU 7

Recapping No. 13 MSU’s 38-7 loss to No. 1 Alabama at Bryant-Denny Stadium on Saturday.


It did not start well for MSU (7-1, 3-1 SEC), which fell behind 21-0 less than 17 minutes into the game. There was no coming back against the nation’s best defense, and the Crimson Tide (8-0, 5-0) continued its march toward a second consecutive BCS title.

Alabama scored on its first three possessions. MSU had a strong opening possession that resulted in a blocked field goal, and after that it was tough sledding. State had 105 total yards at halftime and finished with 256. It was held to 47 yards rushing, with LaDarius Perkins – the SEC’s leading rusher entering the weekend – being held to 38 on 15 carries.

QB Tyler Russell was 15 of 30 for 169 yards, no TDs and an interception, just his second of the year. That came in the third quarter after MSU drove 97 yards to Alabama’s 1. On third down, Russell was picked off by Robert Lester in the end zone.

Chris Smith had a game-high 73 yards on three catches for MSU.

MSU went three-and-out on four consecutive possessions in the second quarter and trailed 24-0 at the break. The defense held strong for a couple of quarters before Alabama made it 31-0 early in the fourth. The Crimson Tide gained 414 total yards, with 235 of it coming through the air. QB A.J. McCarron was 16 of 23 for 208 yards and two touchdowns. The rushing attack was led by freshman T.J. Yeldon, who had 84 yards and a score on 10 carries. Eddie Lacy was held to 26 yards on 10 carries.

State avoided its first shutout since the 2008 Egg Bowl with a late touchdown pass from Dak Prescott to Robert Johnson. It was the second straight game Johnson caught a TD.

This was MSU’s worst loss to Alabama in nine years, and it’s lost five in a row in this series. The Crimson Tide has simply been dominant, with its closest game this fall a 33-14 win over Ole Miss.



Ala – T.J. Yeldon 11 run (Jeremy Shelley kick), 10:28 (9 plays, 59 yards, 4:32)

Ala – Kenny Bell 57 pass from A.J. McCarron (Shelly kick), 3:27 (6 plays, 80 yards, 3:13)


Ala – Michael Williams 9 pass from McCarron (Shelley kick), 13:33 (8 plays, 73 yards, 2:33)

Ala – Shelley 34 field goal, :52 (6 plays, 36 yards, 1:13)


No scoring


Ala – Lacy 27 pass from Blake Sims (Shelley kick), 13:06 (3 plays, 28 yards, 1:43)

Ala – Kenyan Drake 3 run (Shelley kick), 8:14 (8 plays, 43 yards, 4:41)

MSU – Robert Johnson 2 pass from Dak Prescott (Devon Bell kick), 4:39 (9 plays, 63 yards, 3:35)

I am the online content coordinator for I also co-host The Memo and Prep Rally podcasts and host the Newsbreak program. Previously at the Journal, I covered Mississippi State athletics (2008-13), high schools (2004-08), and was on the copy desk (2002-04).

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  • 6571duff

    That was embarrassing and pathetic.The defense was nonexistent and as long as the coaching and scheme stay the same, it will remain that way.

  • Stankylegs

    On the defensive side of the ball, there wasn’t much we could do about McCarron dropping passes in the bucket at the sideline. One thing that would have helped is a pass rusher. Someone in the front four who can beast out, put a move on someone and get to the quarterback. I thought it would be Autry, but that dude has proven to be ordinary and slow, and he gets winded. Eulls is an ordinary player, too. The fact Cherington — a former walk-on — played a lion’s share of snaps at DT exposes one of our weaknesses — recruiting. For the second straight year, we’ve got a walk-on manning a starting spot on defense. Can’t knock those guys for earning their spots, but golly.
    Our lack of an anchor at left tackle goes into its second year; our lack of a stud wideout is still there; and our lack of a star or two anywhere on the field was exposed.

  • Mantachie

    Still Believe? when you face real talent it does show weakness.The wins were great but now some quality opponents will show just where the program is at. We know a 3rd bowl game is in the mix but now a quality win is needed over a tough sec team.
    Not just the Auburns, Tenn or Ole Miss. Next up a quality win

  • MidTennDog

    Everything State could do wrong, they did. I’m not sure they would have beaten Alabama STATE much less Alabama. The blocked field goal; the interception on the 1; Russell had a wide open receiver in the 2nd quarter sprinting down the sidelines and never saw him; the two horrendous punt returns where the blockers had no idea where the ball & returner were.
    Had they not done these things, I think State still would have lost but in a close one. Both of Bama’s lines played outstanding and McCarron was spot on. He may be the best qb they’ve had in a long time. Better than Croyle, who made it to the NFL.
    Unfortunately, I felt that even if State won this game… they were going to lose the next week to A&M because of the balance they have on offense and the fact that Bama is just such a physical team that it’s hard to recover in just a week. I hope I’m wrong.

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