Trailing Auburn 33-21 midway through the third quarter, Alabama needed to put points on the board in the worst way. After the Tide converted a 4th-and-3 play at the Auburn 42-yard line, offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin dialed up a play for his top receiving threat, Amari Cooper, on the next play.
Here’s what happened:
Quarterback Blake Sims hit a wide-open Cooper in stride for a 39-yard touchdown. The play was so well-designed that as soon as Kiffin saw Auburn’s coverage, he had his arms up in the air in celebration. (Thanks to @SmartFootball for the Vine)
That was the second of three touchdown catches for Cooper and it sparked Alabama’s comeback, an eventual 55-44 win. After Cooper’s touchdown, the Crimson Tide offense could not be stopped and scored on its next four possessions, including a 75-yard connection from Sims to Cooper later in the quarter.
His Iron Bowl performance – 13 catches for 224 yards – should vault him into Heisman consideration.
Heading into the SEC Championship Game, Cooper has 103 catches for 1,573 yards and 14 touchdowns on the season.
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