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Alabama 52, Arkansas 0

The SportsXchange

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- A wild day in the SEC included a rather mundane and methodical evening at Bryant-Denny Stadium as top-ranked Alabama jumped ahead of Arkansas early and cruised to a 52-0 victory on Saturday night.

The victory extended Alabama's winning streak to 11 games -- dating to last season's second consecutive national championship season -- and will keep the Crimson Tide (7-0 overall, 4-0 SEC) atop the national rankings. Arkansas fell to 3-5 overall and 0-4 in SEC play.

Alabama coach Nick Saban will certainly find things that bothered me him during his team's latest victory, particularly during film study. But it was hard to spot on a Saturday night that Alabama appeared to do little wrong on offense, defense or special teams.

Quarterback AJ McCarron, who sat down with just under six minutes left in the third quarter after throwing for 180 yards and three touchdowns, and running backs Kenyan Drake and T.J. Yeldon led the Alabama offense to 532 yards.

Drake and Yeldon combined for 192 of Alabama's 352 rushing yards with Drake scoring two touchdowns and Yeldon adding one. Alabama's offense didn't allow a sack or turn the ball over and the Crimson Tide was not flagged for a penalty in the game.

The C.J. Mosley-led defense limited the Razorbacks to 254 yards, even though freshman running back Alex Collins managed 77 hard-earned yards on 18 carries. And Alabama's special teams contributed a blocked field goal attempt and a fumble recovery on the second-half kickoff.

Alabama dominated Arkansas in all three phases on the way to a 28-0 halftime lead.

The Crimson Tide scored on its first two possessions, punted only once and allowed Arkansas past midfield on one possession.

McCarron completed 12-of-16 passes for 138 yards in the first half, with touchdown strikes of 4 yards to Jalston Fowler and 30 yards to Amari Cooper.

But the most impressive offensive player for the Crimson Tide in the first half was Drake, who had 85 yards on six carries, including touchdown rushes of 1 yard and 46 yards.

Alabama's first two touchdowns came on McCarron's short pass to Fowler in the left flat and Drake's touchdown plunge.

Drake broke a tackle at the line of scrimmage and a tackle at the end of his 46-yard scoring run in the second quarter, and Cooper's touchdown came with 1:07 left in the first half.

Arkansas managed only 137 yards on 32 first-half plays and threatened to score just once.

But that scoring opportunity ended when Alabama defensive end Jeoffrey Pagan blocked Zach Hocker's 40-yard field goal attempt in the second quarter.

NOTES: Alabama safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix returned to the lineup after missing the last two games because of an NCAA suspension. He had an interception on a tipped pass on Arkansas' second drive on Saturday. Clinton-Dix was suspended after it was discovered he received an impermissible benefit. Clinton-Dix didn't practice during the suspension. ... Arkansas' Bret Bielema appeared in his 100th game as a head coach on Saturday. The former Wisconsin coach was 71-28 entering Saturday's game. ... Alabama safety Vinnie Sunseri was hurt on a first-quarter kickoff and didn't play the rest of the first half. ... McCarron entered Saturday's game with a 31-2 record as the starting quarterback in Tuscaloosa. His winning percentage (.939) in that category is the best in SEC history.
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