Alabama notebook: Tide’s Kelly leaves with knee injury
by Marq Burnett
mburnett@annistonstar.com
Sep 29, 2013 | 2104 views |  0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Alabama defensive back Eddie Jackson (4) intercepts a Bo Wallace pass to stop an Ole Miss drive during first half action. (Photo by Trent Penny)
Alabama defensive back Eddie Jackson (4) intercepts a Bo Wallace pass to stop an Ole Miss drive during first half action. (Photo by Trent Penny)
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TUSCALOOSA — Alabama center Ryan Kelly left the game late in second quarter and didn’t return. He went to locker room for knee ligament tests, according to ESPN.

“Ryan Kelly has a stretched MCL,” Tide coach Nick Saban said. “He will probably be out for a couple of weeks, maybe even three. I don’t know for sure, but he will be out for a couple of weeks.”

Kelly was replaced by redshirt junior Chad Lindsay. Along with right guard Anthony Steen, Lindsay made the key block on T.J. Yeldon’s 68-yard touchdown run.

“We have a lot of confidence in Chad,” Saban said. “He did a really good job when he went in there. Made all of the line calls. He played solid and we got good movement.”

Eddie Jackson

True freshman Eddie Jackson made his second start at cornerback. He picked off Bo Wallace’s pass at the Alabama 27-yard line for the first interception of his career.

“I think Eddie did a good job,” Saban said. “Sometimes he played a little soft. Sometimes he played a little deep, but he did a good job of jamming people.”

Jackson was flagged for targeting in the third quarter and ejected. The ejection was overturned and Jackson was able to return.

“I don’t think it was a good choice or decision for him to make when he got the penalty on the hit,” Saban said. “The ball was gone. The guy had already missed the ball. It was an unprotected player. I don’t think he hit him with his head and he didn’t launch. He hit him with his shoulder.

“So I think they made the right call and I think the review was right.”

Added safety HaHa Clinton-Dix, “I just told him to keep his head up because I almost lost it when I had a targeting foul.”

Jackson had four total tackles including a tackle for loss. The Tide has four interceptions thus far on the season with one in the season opener against Virginia Tech and two in its win at Texas A&M.

Fourth down

Alabama had three fourth down stops on its own side of the field. Ole Miss was stopped at the Alabama 29, Alabama 7 and Alabama 18 on three attempts.

Saban praised the fans for its crowd noise that affected the Rebels’ communication.

“I think the team responded great, but I think our fans responded great,” Saban said. “Our fans were great in this game. On all of those four down stops in the redzone, it was tough for them to operate. I know our players as well as myself and all the coaches really appreciate that.”

1973 team

Alabama honored its 1973 team before kickoff. The 1973 team won a national championship and a Southeastern Conference championship under Paul “Bear” Bryant.

Gary Rutledge and Wayne Wheeler were honorary captains for Alabama. Both were stars on the 1973 team.

First half shutout

For the fifth time in its last eight games, Alabama has held its opponent scoreless in the first half. In addition to Saturday’s game, the Crimson Tide shut out Colorado State (Sept. 21, 2013), Notre Dame (Jan. 7, 2013), Auburn (Nov. 24, 2012) and Western Carolina (Nov. 17, 2012) during the first two quarters of play.

Cade Foster

Senior kicker Cade Foster drilled a career-long 53-yard bomb through the uprights. His previous best of 52 yards came on Sept. 22, 2012, against Florida Atlantic.

Foster hit three field goals, first from 28 yards, then from 53 yards and another just as the half ended from 42 yards, to set a new career high in field goals made in a game. He had previously hit two in four games, last against Florida Atlantic on Sept. 22, 2012.

Miscellaneous notes

Under head coach Nick Saban, the Crimson Tide has held opponents to 10 points or fewer 43 times since the start of the 2007 season. The Crimson Tide has shut out the opposition 11 times during the Saban era.

Sophomore T.J. Yeldon’s 68-yard rush in the third quarter was the longest of his career to date. He finished the game with 121 rushing yards, reaching the 100-yard rushing mark for the seventh time in his career and second time this season.

Senior AJ McCarron completed 25 passes in tonight’s game, setting a new career high. He recorded 23 completions twice in 2011, last against LSU in the 2012 BCS National Championship Game. It is McCarron’s eighth game with 20 or more completions.

Saturday’s attendance was a sellout of 101,821. That marks the 59th sellout crowd in the last 60 games at Bryant-Denny Stadium dating back to the Auburn game on Nov. 20, 2004.

With tonight’s win, Alabama leads the Ole Miss series 47-9-2 (51-8-2 before NCAA rulings) with 10 straight wins and 27 of the last 29 games in the series dating back to the 1977 season (excluding NCAA rulings).

Alabama has had 17 games since 2009 against undefeated AP ranked teams and has handed that opponent the first loss of the season in 15 of those matchups.

Alabama has won 24 straight games in the month of September, with its last loss coming on Sept. 29, 2007, to 22nd-ranked Florida State in Jacksonville, Fla.
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