College Football Week 13 Auburn v. Alabama: Top 10 Games in Iron Bowl History
This Friday we have the pleasure of watching the 75th installment of the Iron Bowl.
Alabama leads this series overall with a 40-33-1 record and they've won each of the last two years.
This year could be different though, as Auburn comes into Tuscaloosa ranked No. 2.
Cameron Newton has been a revelation for the Tigers at the quarterback position and could change the course of this rivalry.
It won't be easy going up against Greg McElroy and reigning Heisman trophy winner Mark Ingram.
This game has the potential to join the following games amongst the all-time classics in Iron Bowl history.
Read on to find out which previous episodes of the rivalry make the cut.
10. Auburn 22, Alabama 14 in 1993
In 1993, Auburn came into the Iron Bowl ranked No. 6 with a perfect 10-0 record. Alabama was also having a very good season, ranked No. 11 with an 8-1-1 record.
Alabama had an upset on their minds when they got out to a 14-5 lead at halftime, but Auburn would not be denied.
In the second half, starting quarterback Stan White was injured, forcing Patrick Nix into the game.
Nix's first play came on 4th-and-15 from the Alabama 35. He stepped up in a big way, hitting Frank Saunders for a touchdown.
Auburn wound up winning and continuing their undefeated run.
Most significantly, not many people got to see this game, because Auburn was on probation and the game wasn't being televised nationally.
However, it was shown on closed-circuit TV in Tuscaloosa, making this game the only to sell out in two different stadiums simultaneously.
9. Alabama 17, Auburn 15 in 1984
Late in the fourth quarter, Auburn had the ball. It was 4th-and-goal, the ball was on the 1-yard line, and Auburn was down two points.
Yet, for some strange reason, Auburn head coach Pat Dye decided against kicking the field goal and instead tried to punch the ball into the end zone for a touchdown.
Brent Fullwood got the ball and Bo Jackson was supposed to block but he went the wrong way. That allowed Alabama defensive back Rory Turner to force Fullwood out of bounds short of the goal line.
Alabama won the game and Auburn failed to secure their berth in the Sugar Bowl.
8. Alabama 21, Auburn 14 in 1994
Alabama came into this game ranked No. 3 with a 10-0 record while Auburn was slightly lower in the rankings at No. 6. The Tigers carried with them a 9-0-1 record, making this a match-up of undefeated teams.
The Crimson Tide took a 21-point lead into the locker room at halftime and survived Patrick Nix's two second-half touchdown passes.
With a minute left, Auburn failed to convert on a 4th-and-3, turning the ball over on downs. Alabama ended up winning the game and ending Auburn's 21-game streak without a loss.
That alone is enough to justify this game's place on the list.
7. Alabama 28, Auburn 17 in 1981
Pat Dye's first Iron Bowl as coach of the Auburn Tiger's didn't go so well.
The game was played at Legion Field and Alabama trailed Auburn 17-14 going into the fourth quarter.
That quarter would be a much different story.
The Crimson Tide rolled over the Tigers in the final period, scoring two late touchdowns to win by 11 points.
Bear Bryant, the head coach for Alabama, got his 315th career win with this victory. With that, he set the then-NCAA record for most wins by a head coach.
6. Alabama 25, Auburn 23 in 1985
This is the game during which fans witnessed "The Kick."
With just 37 seconds left in the game, Alabama trailed 22-23 and had the ball all the way back on their own 12-yard line.
Quarterback Mike Shula led the Tide on an astoundingly quick drive to the Auburn 35-yard line. Van Tiffin strode onto the field.
The kicker lined up to attempt a 52-yard field goal and then drilled it through the uprights as time expired to win the game for his team.
It became "The Kick" in Alabama lore.
5. Alabama 7, Auburn 3 in 1967
This game was played at Legion Field and clearly showed the dedication of Auburn and Alabama fans to this rivalry.
Despite the brutal conditions—storms and pouring rain throughout—the fans stayed in the stands.
The field was periodically cleaned to remove the rain-related accessories that littered it after leaving their rightful owners in the stands.
Obviously the game was bound to be low scoring. There wasn't a single touchdown until the "run through the mud."
Ken Stabler scrambled and ran for a touchdown 57 yards through the mud.
Game, set, match.
4. Auburn 23, Alabama 22 in 1982
With just about two minutes left to play, Alabama led this game 22-16 and it seemed as though they would hold on for the lead. T
here was no way that Auburn could drive down the entire field.
They did though, and then handed the ball off to their star running back Bo Jackson.
Jackson took the hand-off and leaped over the top of the pile on the 1-yard line for the winning score.
The touchdown ended Alabama's nine-game winning streak in the Iron Bowl, a bitter end to Bear Bryant's tenure as the head coach of the Crimson Tide.
3. Auburn 18, Alabama 17 in 1997
Alabama had this one all wrapped up and they were ready to put the bow on top with a first down.
A screen pass was thrown to Ed Scissum but he fumbled it.
The play would surely have gone for a first down and sealed the victory for the Crimson Tide, but instead Auburn had one last possession.
They capitalized on it as Jaret Holmes made a 31-yard field goal with just 21 seconds left in the game.
As a result, Auburn went to their first SEC Championship Game.
2. Alabama 26, Auburn 21 in 2009
Going into the game, No. 2 Alabama was undefeated while Auburn was just 7-4.
Thanks to a reverse and a surprise onside kick, the Tigers roared out to a 14-0 lead. Alabama however tied the game going into halftime at 14-14.
Then down 20-21 in the fourth quarter, Greg McElroy and the Crimson Tide took the field. The 15-play, 79-yard drive lasted for 7:03, draining the clock all the way down to 1:24. It culminated in a touchdown pass from McElroy to Roy Upchurch.
As the clock hit zero, Auburn's last-ditch attempt at a Hail Mary came up short and Alabama remained undefeated. This was despite the fact that eventual Heisman winner Mark Ingram was held to just 30 yards on 16 carries.
Alabama went on to win the BCS Championship.
1. Auburn 17, Alabama 16 in 1972
This game became known as "Punt Bama Punt."
Alabama was a 16-point favorite as they were ranked No. 2 with a 10-0 record. Auburn was still having a great season at 8-1.
With just six minutes left, the Crimson Tide were dominating the game and winning 16-3. However they were forced to punt and Greg Gantt's kick was blocked by Bill Newton. David Langner ran it back 25 yards for a touchdown.
Several minutes later, almost the exact same thing happened.
It seemed like a replay.
Newton blocked Gantt's punt again and Langner ran it back for a score. That was enough for Auburn to score an upset victory.
Bear Bryant was so upset that he vowed to never have another three-step punter. He also emphasized the next Iron Bowl all of the 1973 season, a game which they ended up winning and calling "Score Bama Score."
ESPN ranked "Punt Bama Punt" as the 55th most defining moment in college football history. They also called it the eighth most painful outcome in college history.
Alabama 21, Auburn 14 in 1964
The first nationally televised Iron Bowl was a great one.
Joe Namath led the crimson tide to victory en route to their eighth national championship.
Alabama 31, Auburn 7 in 1971
This was the only time both teams had perfect records (unlike 1994 when Auburn had a tie).
They were playing for a chance to play Nebraska for the national title.
Alabama dominated throughout.