University of Alabama

Alabama football: Closer look at Crimson Tide's game today against Mississippi Rebels

Mississippi (3-2, 1-1) at No. 8 Alabama (5-1, 2-1 SEC), 9 p.m. (ESPN2)

Line: Alabama by 21.

Series Record: Alabama leads 43-9-2.

Last meeting: 2009, Alabama 22-3.

WHAT’S AT STAKE

Alabama wants to rebound from its first regular-season loss in 2 1/2 years and has little margin for error in the SEC West. Mississippi could get another big confidence boost.

KEY MATCHUP

Alabama’s crimson-faced defense against the SEC’s top scoring offense. The Tide allowed 35 points to South Carolina. Mississippi has racked up 97 points in its past two games.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Mississippi: RB Brandon Bolden, the SEC’s No. 3 rusher, averages 103.6 yards per game. He will go against a defense that had a nearly 40-game streak without an opposing rusher topping 100 yards snapped by South Carolina’s Marcus Lattimore.

Alabama: RB Mark Ingram has been held in check and gotten limited opportunities the past two games. The Tide could return to smash-mouth football after passing early last Saturday.

FACTS & FIGURES

Mississippi’s 186 points are its most through five games since the 1935 team had 205. ... Last year’s 22-3 Alabama win came after a four-year stretch when the game was decided by 13 total points — all Tide wins. Bama has won the past six meetings. ... Alabama can match its third-longest Bryant-Denny Stadium winning streak of 18 games. ... The Rebels are second in a string of six straight SEC opponents facing Alabama after a bye.

— Associated Press

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