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Alabama 49, Tennessee-Chattanooga 0

The SportsXchange

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- The formalities are now over.

Although the Alabama football team appeared to be hardly inspired Saturday afternoon, the Crimson Tide scored four touchdowns in the first half, took a 35-point lead early in the third quarter and started plugging in the reserves in a 49-0 rout of Tennessee-Chattanooga.

In their final game at Bryant-Denny Stadium, senior quarterback AJ McCarron completed 13 of 16 passes for 171 yards and two touchdowns and senior wide receiver Kevin Norwood had four catches for 84 yards and a touchdown.

The No. 1 Crimson Tide (11-0) outgained the Mocs 428-174 and tallied 244 yards and four touchdowns on the ground. Sophomore running back Kenyan Drake ran 11 times for 77 yards and a touchdown, and freshman running back Derrick Henry had six carries for 66 yards and another score.

After fumbling his first punt return, junior Christion Jones made up for it with a 45-yard return for a touchdown -- his second TD return of the season.

Chattanooga's best chance to score came on a 48-yard field-goal attempt in the second quarter, but it was blocked by freshman defensive lineman A'Shawn Robinson. Five plays later, McCarron hit Norwood for a 28-yard touchdown for a 28-0 lead.

Alabama's path to a possible third straight national championship is down to next Saturday's game at No. 6 Auburn and -- if the Tide wins -- the SEC Championship in Atlanta a week later.

Meanwhile, Tennessee-Chattanooga (8-4) will find out Sunday whether it will play in the 24-team Football Championship Subdivision playoffs. The Mocs were ranked No. 21 in the latest coaches' poll.

NOTES: Alabama coach Nick Saban elected to rest players dealing with injuries, including CB Deion Belue (toe), RB T.J. Yeldon (ankle) and junior TE Brian Vogler (ankle). Instead, the Crimson Tide started freshman CB Maurice Smith, RB Kenyan Drake and freshman TE O.J. Howard. ... Chattanooga QB Jacob Huesman (knee) didn't start but did briefly play. Terrell Robinson started and completed 10 of 15 passes for 82 yards. ... Alabama assistant strength and conditioning coach Corey Harris, who was suspended indefinitely when it was discovered he gave a small loan to junior safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix last summer, has been fired. Clinton-Dix served a two-game suspension earlier this season. ... Among those honored during Alabama's Senior Day pregame ceremony were Kenny Bell, Belue, Cade Foster, John Fulton, AJ McCarron, C.J. Mosley, Kevin Norwood, Tana Patrick, Anthony Steen, Ed Stinson and Kellen Williams.
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