Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year and Good Night from the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic

Alabama provided the on-field fireworks, then the Goodyear Cotton Bowl provided the post-game show

   Fans exiting AT&T Stadium enjoyed a postgame fireworks show overhead. A neat way to end a special night.
   The explosions during the game were provided mostly by Alabama quarterback Jake Coker and defensive back Cyrus Jones, who were named the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic Offensive and Defensive MVPs, respectively.
Goodyear Cotton Bowl Offensive MVP Jake Coker. Photo by Ian Halperin/CBAA

Goodyear Cotton Bowl Defensive MVP Cyrus Jones. Photo by Ian Halperin/CBAA

Scenes from the celebration: Alabama 38, Michigan State 0

Photo By Ian Halperin/CBAA

Photo By Ian Halperin/CBAA

Photo By Ian Halperin/CBAA

Photo By Ian Halperin/CBAA

Photo By Ian Halperin/CBAA

Read all about it! The Tide are going to the National Championship!

   With a dominating, 38-0 win over Michigan State, the Alabama Crimson Tide will play for the national title against Clemson on Jan. 11 in Glendale, Arizona.
   Alabama became the first team to record a shutout in the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic since LSU shutout Texas in the 1963 Classic.
   The 38-point margin of victory was the third-largest point differential in Cotton Bowl history. It was also the most decisive shutout in Cotton Bowl history, topping Oklahoma A&M's 34-0 win over TCU in 1945.
   Crimson Tide quarterback Jake Coker's .833 pass completion percentage (25 of 30) ranks second in Cotton Bowl history. Only Texas QB Bobby Layne's .917 performance (11 of 12) against Missouri in 1946 ranks higher.
   Coker's 25 completions ranks ninth in Cotton Bowl history. Cyrus Jones' 80 punt return yards are the third-most in Cotton Bowl history.

Under 8 minutes to go and 'Bama in complete control, 38-0

   With 7:52 left in the 80th Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic, it's been all Alabama. The Crimson Tide have dominated with smothering defense and big plays on offense and special teams.
   An 11-yard touchdown run by Heisman Trophy winner Derrick Henry has given Alabama a 38-0 lead, and the sounds of "Sweet Home Alabama" have the Crimson Tide fans in a tizzy.
   In less than two hours, it will be 2016. Not a bad way to end the year for the Tide, who began the season at AT&T Stadium with a 35-17 win over Wisconsin. The New Year will start with a chance to win another national championship.

Coker connects with Ridley again for 50 yards and a 31-0 Alabama lead

   Calvin Ridley hauled in a 50-yard touchdown pass, his second score of the game, from Jake Coker to give Alabama a 31-0 lead with 2:20 to play in the third quarter.
   It was Ridley's seventh catch for 132 yards. Coker is 24-of-29 passing for 280 yards and two TDs.

Alabama punt return puts Michigan State deeper in a hole

   Cyrus Jones broke loose on a 57-yard punt return to give Alabama a 24-0 lead with 3:24 left in the third quarter.
   It's hard to say that's an insurmountable lead, given the offensive era we're in, but the tone of this game says Michigan State better start producing - fast.