Junior quarterback Tua Tagovailoa went 17-of-21 for 293 yards and five scores through the air
TUSCALOOSA, Ala – Junior quarterback Tua Tagovailoa made Alabama history by throwing five touchdown passes for the second-consecutive week and the third time in his career as the No. 2 Alabama football team defeated Southern Miss, 49-7 in Bryant-Denny Stadium Saturday. The Crimson Tide moves to 4-0, while the Golden Eagles drop to 2-2 in their 2019 campaign.
Tagovailoa completed 17-of-21 passes for 293 yards and five passing scores marking the first time in Alabama history a quarterback has had back-to-back games with four or more touchdown passes. On the receiving end of two of those touchdown passes was junior wideout Henry Ruggs III who had four catches for a career-best 148 yards and two scores. Junior wideout Jerry Jeudy caught six passes for 96 yards, while also tallying two touchdown receptions. On the ground, junior running back Najee Harris totaled 110 yards on 14 carries, along with a five-yard touchdown catch.
On defense, senior defensive back Jared Mayden led the Tide with a career-best eight tackles, while freshman linebacker Christian Harris finished second with six tackles, including 1.5 tackles-for-loss. In addition, senior defensive back Trevon Diggs grabbed his second interception of the season to go along with three tackles on the day.
How It Happened
- Tagovailoa found Ruggs III for two long touchdown strikes from 74 and 45 yards out in the first quarter to put the Tide ahead 14-0 after the first frame.
- In the second quarter, Tagovailoa linked up with junior running back Najee Harris for a five-yard score for his third touchdown pass of the game. Later in the period, Tagovailoa found a wide open Jeudy for a 17-yard score to make it 28-0.
- Southern Miss added a touchdown before the half to make it 28-7 heading into the break.
- The Tide added to its point total in the third quarter when Tagovailoa completed his fifth touchdown pass of the day, and second to Jeudy, from 20 yards out.
- Junior running back Brian Robinson Jr. made it 42-7 after scampering in for a six-yard score with 5:43 to go in the third.
- Late in the game, the Tide added another touchdown when redshirt freshman running back Jerome Ford rumbled in for a five-yard score to make it 49-7, the eventual final.
Players of the Game
- Tagovailoa threw five touchdown passes in three quarters of action and has thrown 10 touchdown passes in the last two games.
- Ruggs III set a new career high with 148 yards on just four catches for an average of 37 yards per reception. In the first quarter, Ruggs III totaled 131 yards on three grabs.
- Harris went over 100 yards on the ground for the second time in his career and the first time this season. The junior needed just 14 carries to accumulate a team-high 110 yards for a 7.9 per rush clip.
- Mayden posted a career-high in tackles set with eight for the game.
- The Crimson Tide outgained the Golden Eagles 514-226.
- Through the air, Alabama averaged 16.9 yards per completion. The Crimson Tide also averaged 8.6 yards per play compared to Southern Miss’ 3.9 yards per attempt.
- Alabama won the turnover battle, 2-1. Diggs had an interception in the first quarter and in the third frame, redshirt sophomore defensive lineman Phidarian Mathis forced a fumble that freshman defensive back Jordan Battle recovered.
Alabama is back in action next Saturday, Sept. 28, hosting its first home SEC game of the season against Ole Miss. Kickoff between the Crimson Tide and the Rebels is set for 2:30 p.m. CT with the game airing live on CBS.