Auburn knocks off Alabama
AUBURN, Ala. — Auburn fans blanketed the field from end zone to end zone just like the last time they got to celebrate a stirring Iron Bowl win.
This time, Jarrett Stidham, Kerryon Johnson and No. 6 Auburn didn’t need a miraculous final play to unleash the celebration. It was a build up to the crescendo as the Tigers beat top-ranked Alabama in a dominating 26-14 win Saturday. Auburn earned a berth in next week’s Southeastern Conference title game against No. 7 Georgia.
The Tigers, an after thought earlier this season, now have their sights set on one of the four playoff spots. And Auburn coach Gus Malzahn made it clear his two-loss squad deserves a shot. One of his team’s two defeats was to defending national champion Clemson, No. 3 at the time.
“We’ve got to win next week and that’s going to be a handful,” Malzahn said of his upcoming rematch with Georgia. “I don’t know, them experts got it figured out. I don’t think anybody else has played two No. 1 teams and a No. (3) team. Put up our schedule against anybody.”
Auburn fans covered the field in orange and blue after the final play, creating a scene similar to 2013 when the fourth-ranked Tigers beat No. 1 Alabama on a last-play, 109-yard return of a missed field goal. The Tigers went on to the national title game but had lost the three Iron Bowls since.
Stidham passed for 237 yards and ran for a fourth-quarter touchdown to set up a rematch with Georgia in the SEC championship game Dec. 2 with a playoff spot almost certainly on the line.