Nick Saban wins 200th career game at Alabama, Tide take down Arkansas

(Vasha Hunt | AP)
Published: Oct. 14, 2023 at 5:11 PM EDT
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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WBRC) - In a more tightly contested battle than many might have thought, the Tide took down the Arkansas Razorbacks 24-21 in Tuscaloosa early Saturday afternoon in what was Coach Nick Saban’s 200th career win at Alabama.


Arkansas received the opening kickoff Saturday morning in Tuscaloosa looking to get on the board early and make a statement. However, the Alabama defense stepped up big on the first possession of the game, forcing a Razorback three and out. However, after the defensive stop, the Crimson Tide offense was unable to do much on their own, going three and out as well.

On their second possession of the game, the Razorback offense moved the ball down the field, eventually getting into Alabama territory after a 24-yard completion from KJ Jefferson to Ty Washington. After a three-yard run from Rashod Dubinion, the Razorback offense was unable to move the ball anymore, and capitalized on the drive with a 55-yard field goal from Cam Little.

The Alabama offense stalled again on their next drive, this time going only 5 plays for 9-yards, and had to punt the ball away for the second time in as many possessions. KJ Jefferson then led the Arkansas offense back down the field again after completed passes to Isaiah Sategna and Andrew Armstrong for 14 and 21 yards. However, after making their way down to the Alabama 45-yard line, the Razorback offense stalled again and had to settle for another field goal, this time with it being good from 49-yards.


Arkansas - 6

Alabama - 0


After the slow start on their first two possessions, the Crimson Tide offense finally got going on their third drive of the day. After a Jalen Milroe run for no gain and a fumble on second down, the Tide were backed up on their own 21-yard line facing a crucial 3rd & 14. However, Jalen Milroe found a wide-open Kobe Prentice down the middle of the field for 79-yards and an Alabama touchdown.

After another Razorback punt, the Tide looked to extend their lead, and that’s exactly what they did with a phenomenal 10-play, 83-yard drive that ended in the end zone. The Tide began the possession at their own 17-yard line, and on 2nd & 8, Tide QB Jalen Milroe connected with Jermaine Burton for 44-yards all the way down to the Razorback 37-yard line. After a short run and a sack, Jalen Milroe connected with Ja’Corey Brooks for 25-yards and a first down, converting a crucial 3rd & 16. After runs from Roydell Williams and Jase McClellan to get the Tide down to the 1-yard line, Jalen Milroe capped off the drive with a 1-yard touchdown run, giving Alabama their first lead of the game.

The Tide defense forced yet another Razorback three and out on their next possession, and again the Alabama offense marched their way down the field, extending their lead yet again.

Jalen Milroe connected with Koby Prentice again, this time for 14-yards before a Jam Miller 16-yard run down to the Razorback 29-yard line. Then, on 1st & 10, Jalen Milroe connected with Amari Niblack for a 29-yard pitch and score and the Tide’s third consecutive touchdown.


Alabama - 21

Arkansas - 6


After the two sides exchanged punts to begin the third quarter, Milroe and the Tide offense marched down the field, going 7-plays for 77-yards and converting on a Will Reichard 30-yard field goal. After the two sides exchanged punts again on their next two drives, KJ Jefferson and the Arkansas offense finally got the ball in the end zone late in the third quarter. After a few chunk plays to move the offense slowly down the field, Jefferson took a carry of his own for 22-yards to the Alabama 25-yard line. Then, on 3rd & 5, a pass interference penalty on Alabama’s Caleb Downs gave the Razorbacks an automatic first down all the way down to the Crimson Tide 5-yard line. On the next play, Jefferson found Isaiah Sategna for in the end zone for a Razorback touchdown.


Alabama - 24

Arkansas - 13


After another Alabama punt at the beginning of the fourth quarter, things became a little more tight in Tuscaloosa as early afternoon approached. A KJ Jefferson 23-yard run put the Razorbacks on the Alabama 48-yard line. Then, on 2nd & 10, Jefferson connected with Var’Keyes Gumms for 25-yards down to the Crimson Tide 13-yard line. After a Rashod Dubinion run for a loss of a yard and an incomplete pass on second down, KJ Jefferson connected with Rashod Dubinion for a 14-yard touchdown pass and another Razorback touchdown. After a 2-point conversion converted by Arkansas, it’s now a 24-21 ball game.

Alabama then punted on their next possession, but then forced a Razorback punt on their next possession and never gave the ball back to Arkansas. With 5:05 remaining in the game, Alabama got the ball back and ran the ball over and over again, forcing Arkansas to take all of their timeouts. Then, on 3rd & 2, Jase McClellan ran for 5-yards and a first down, effectively ending the game. Jalen Milroe then took a knee on the following plays, running the clock all the way down to zero.


Alabama - 24

Arkansas - 21

Alabama will be back on the field next Saturday taking on the Tennessee Volunteers at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Kickoff is slated for 2:30 p.m.

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