Bad weather delays Tide and Hogs
By By Mark Etheridge / special to The Star
Sept. 28, 2003
Arkansas had to wait to get started in their 34-31 double-overtime win over Alabama. Saturday's kickoff was delayed by the game officials as a thunderstorm warning was issued for Tuscaloosa.
The announcement came just seconds after the visiting Razorbacks stormed onto the field causing an abrupt return trip to the locker room. The kickoff came sixty minutes later than scheduled at 3:30.
Put Me In Coach
The Alabama coaching staff has been questioned about their unwillingness to play many bench players.
Alabama used just 48 players in last week's loss to Northern Illinois. The lack of depth has been most noticeable up front where only six players garnered the bulk of the snaps at four positions in the first four games. Redshirt freshman Kyle Tatum started in place of normal starter Ahmaad Childress.
With Childress and normal backup Jeremy Clark unavailable, the Tide coaches turned to true freshman Dominic Lee. Lee's appearance was his first action of the young season.
Alabama hosted ninth-ranked Arkansas marking the second time in school history that two top 10 teams have visited Bryant-Denny Stadium in the same season. Alabama lost to top-ranked Oklahoma 20-13 on September 6th. Alabama also faced two top 10 squads in 1999 splitting games with Tennessee and Mississippi State.
Here I Am
Saturday also marked the debut of true freshman Tyrone Prothro. The coaches hope the 5-foot-8, 175 pound Prothro can provide the Crimson Tide receiving core with an added speed threat. Prothro played just one play carrying the ball on a reverse that was stopped for no gain.
Look At Me
Senior running backs Shaud Williams and Cedric Cobbs are stating their case for post-season honors. Arkansas' Cobbs now has 562 yards rushing in the first four games. Alabama's Williams has 597 rushing yards in his five games.
Finally, A Turnover
Alabama's defense went 16 quarters without forcing a turnover.
That streak ended in a big way as the Crimson Tide forced three in the second half and another in overtime. Early in the third quarter Anthony Madison intercepted a Matt Jones pass and returned it 24 yards setting up a score. Antwan Odom forced a Cedric Cobbs fumble recovered by Juwan Garth to prevent an Arkansas score.
Cornerback Charlie Peprah hauled in a Ryan Sorahan pass for a fourth quarter interception that possibly prevented another Razorback score. In overtime, Charles Jones hauled in Jones pass in the end zone.
Junior All-SEC offensive guard Justin Smiley made his return to the lineup Saturday. Smiley missed the Kentucky and Northern Illinois games with a foot sprain. Redshirt freshman defensive tackle Jeremy Clark did not play for the third consecutive game. Freshman F-Back Leron McClain also did not play for the second week in a row. Starting defensive tackle Ahmaad Childress missed his first game of the year.
Senior linebacker Cornelius Wortham did not dress again and speculation persists that he will take a redshirt season. Fifth-year senior flanker Antonio Carter also did not dress and apparently will not play this season. Carter and the Tide hope the NCAA will grant a sixth year since his injured foot has not healed.