Quick Start in the Iron Bowl...
From 1981-2013, Auburn is 4-10 in the Iron Bowl, when trailing after the first quarter and 14-5, when they don't.
Since Gus Malzahn has coached the Auburn offense, the Tigers are 9-7, when trailing at the end of the first quarter and 41-8, when not.
During the first 36 quarters of this football season, Auburn was held scoreless in only 3 quarters. During the last 8 quarters, they have been held scoreless in 4. This offensive funk needs to come to a stop against Alabama.
During the last 40 meetings against Alabama, Auburn has eclipsed 200-yards rushing only 7 times, compiling a 5-2 record, when doing so. Only 1 of those 200-yard rushing performances have come against Nick Saban's Alabama teams.
The Tigers have averaged only 135.2 yards rushing per game against Alabama (2007-2013), including an average of 73.6 yards rushing from Auburn's leading rusher at the RB position. This year looks to be another major challenge for Auburn to run the football against the Tide.One of the reasons why Auburn had success running the football last season was Alabama wasn't as dominant on first-down run-defense.
During the last 50 Iron Bowls, Auburn has a pass rating of just 103.6. During the games AU had a pass rating of at least 130 on at least 10 pass attempts, the Tigers are 9-1.
An Auburn record that will likely stand for awhile is Bo Jackson's 4 consecutive 100-yard rushing games against Alabama (1982-1985). Jackson averaged 7.0 yards per rush against the Tide. Roc Thomas might have the opportunity to start the next run this Saturday night.
From 2008-2014, Alabama has only been defeated 10 times and of those 10 losses, 6 were by 6-points or less.
The winner averaged 222-yards passing, completing 68% of their passes for an average of 8.5 yards per attempt. They also threw for a combined total of 24 TD passes and only 4 interceptions against the Tide defense.
On defense the winner held Alabama to an average of 110.7 yards rushing for 3.3 yards per rush.
During this same time period (2008-2014) Auburn is 19-1, when the complete at least 60% of their passes for at least 8-yards per attempt, while holding their opponent to under 150-yards rushing. Auburn is 7-2 vs. Alabama since 1981, when they complete at least 60% of their passes.
Nick Marshall needs to play well and the Auburn front-7 needs to play well against the run.
Josh Thompson is the last Auburn DL to lead the team in tackles during a single game with at least 10 tackles. He had 12 stops against Alabama in 2007.
During the last 50 Iron Bowls, Auburn is 10-0 with at least 350-yards in total offense.
During the last 7 Iron Bowls, Auburn averaged 5.71 yards per play on first down during their 3 victories and only 3.80 yards per play during their 4 losses. Playing well on first down will be essential.
Since 1981 the team with the most rushing yardage at the end of the game is 27-6 in the Iron Bowl. Auburn has averaged 284-yards rushing in conference play, while allowing 178-yards on defense. Alabama has averaged 167-yards in conference play, while allowing 115-yards on defense.
During the last 20 Iron Bowls, the team that won the first-down battle in yards per play is 15-5 in the series.
Since 1981 Auburn is 8-2, when they are able to run the ball at least 64 percent of the time on first down and 4-8, when they don't.