After blowing most opponents off the field in the first half, No. 1 Alabama heads to the locker room locked in a tussle. The Tide has not trailed, but finds itself leading Auburn just 17-14.
After a rare punt on its first possession, Alabama took advantage of good field position to draw first blood, scoring on a 7-yard Tua Tagovailoa run.
Auburn tied the game with a 10-play, 73-yard drive featuring mostly runs, including a 9-yarder by Anthony Schwartz to paydirt.
Alabama answered with an 8-play, 65-yard scoring jaunt, taking a 14-7 lead on a 4-yard Henry Ruggs III toss from Tagovailoa. Alabama threatend on its next possession, achieving a 1st-and-10 from the Auburn 11-yard line, but the Tide settled for a 30-yard Joseph Bulovas field goal.
After forcing Alabama’s first three-and-out of the game, Auburn forced a big play from a different kind of Alabama kicking blunder by blocking a Mike Bernier punt at the Alabama 23. The Tigers took advantage of the short field by scoring on a 23-yard throwback pass from wide receiver Ryan Davis to running back Malik Miller, pulling Auburn within 17-14 with 4:04 left in the first half. It was Davis’s third career touchdown pass.
Auburn forced a second straight three-and-out on Alabama’s next possession, but Gus Malzahn was content to run out the remainder of the first half rather than push for the lead.
Alabama will receive to open the second half.
It has not been the sharpest half of football for the Auburn Tigers, but the home team finds themselves up 17-13 against a Tennessee team looking to score an upset this afternoon. The Tigers lost two turnovers, the second of which quickly led to a game-tying touchdown at the time, but a big touchdown play of their own has given Auburn the lead after one half of play.
Bryce Thompson‘s interception of Jarrett Stidham early in the second quarter led to a game-tying touchdown by the Volunteers five plays later. Jarrett Guarantano completed a 42-yard pass to Ty Chandler for a touchdown./
Auburn wasted no time opening the scoring in the game by driving down the field for a touchdown on the game’s opening possession, but the Vols responded with a field goal on the ensuing possessions. Auburn added to their early lead with a field goal on their next offensive series and remained up by seven when the special teams blocked Tennessee’s second field goal attempt.
Tennessee’s defense came up with a big play with the Thompson interception but the defense got burned by the speed of Anthony Schwartz on Auburn’s next possession late in the second quarter. After catching a short route, Schwartz broke a tackle and took off down the right sideline for a blazing fast 76-yard touchdown.
Stidham has passed for 182 yards, 76 of which came on that long touchdown catch and run by Anthony Schwartz, his lone catch of the game. Tennessee has managed to hang around but still has to capitalize a little bit on any opportunities given to them by Auburn in the second half. This one is still anyone’s game, but the Vols have struggled to win these types of battles.