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COLLEGE FOOTBALL

No. 3 Crimson Tide wins with defense, special teams

Alabama gets four interceptions and defeats No. 20 Mississippi, 22-3.

October 11, 2009|Associated Press

OXFORD, MISS. — No. 3 Alabama is positively old-fashioned.

Other teams may have their shiny new spread offenses and pass-first mentality. The Crimson Tide just keeps getting it done with special teams and defense.

Alabama picked off four Jevan Snead passes and scored twice after special-teams miscues to smother No. 20 Mississippi, 22-3, on Saturday.

"This was the most complete win we've had all year, in a difficult situation," Alabama Coach Nick Saban said. "It's like climbing a mountain. The higher you go the more treacherous it gets."

Ole Miss Coach Houston Nutt had won two of his last three and three of five against top-five teams, giving the Rebels hope they could reenter the race for the Southeastern Conference Western Division with an upset.

But the Rebels (3-2, 1-2 SEC) wasted a strong defensive performance with early offensive mistakes and never had the kind of consistency needed to rattle one of the nation's top defenses.

Alabama (6-0, 4-0) couldn't generate much offense against the Rebels' defense, but didn't need it. Mark Ingram rushed for 172 yards and the game's only touchdown and Leigh Tiffin hit five short field goals, one shy of the school's single-game record.

The defense made it stand up, forcing Snead into the four interceptions, which matched a career high. The Crimson Tide's Cory Reamer also blocked a punt and recovered a fumble on a punt return.

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