TUSCALOOSA, AL - Alabama returns to the road for the fourth time in the last six weeks with a trip to Neyland Stadium this Saturday and a renewal of one of the nation's best rivalries. The seventh-ranked Crimson Tide square off with the Tennessee Volunteers for a 6 p.m. (CT) kickoff on Saturday, October 23, in Knoxville, Tenn. It will be the 93rd meeting between the two schools in a series that Alabama leads 46-38-7 (includes NCAA forfeits and vacated games). Tennessee is coming off of a bye week with a 2-4 record on the season and 0-3 mark in the SEC after a 41-14 loss to Georgia on Oct. 9 in Athens. The Volunteers are the third of six SEC teams to have a bye before playing Alabama. The game will be televised on ESPN2 with Brad Nessler on play-by-play, Todd Blackledge as the color analyst and Holly Rowe reporting from the sideline. Eli Gold and Phil Savage will handle the radio call on the Crimson Tide Sports Network with Barry Krauss on the sidelines.
HEAD COACH NICK SABAN: Alabama head coach Nick Saban (Kent State, 1973) is in his fourth season with the Crimson Tide. He was named the school's 27th head coach on January 3, 2007. Saban has compiled a 34-9 record (39-9 including five vacated wins in 2007) at Alabama while leading the Tide to two SEC Western Division championships, one conference title and one national championship. Saban holds a career record of 125-51-1 (129-51-1) as a collegiate head coach, while also serving at Toledo, Michigan State and LSU. Saban won his first national championship as head coach of the LSU Tigers in 2003, guiding the Tigers to a 13-1 record that season. Overall, Saban has coached four conference championship teams (1990 Mid-American, 2001 SEC, 2003 SEC and 2009 SEC) and 10 of his 13 teams have played in postseason bowl games with the Tide appearing in a bowl game each year under Saban's direction. Saban is also one of two coaches (Urban Meyer, Florida) to win two BCS National Championships and the first to accomplish the feat at two different schools.
RANKINGS: Alabama opened the 2010 season ranked first in the Associated Press and USA Today Coaches' preseason polls but checks in at No. 7 in both polls this week, a one-spot jump from last week. Tennessee is not ranked or receiving votes in either poll.
TENNESSEE SERIES: The Crimson Tide lead the series 46-38-7 over Tennessee and have won three straight in the series. UA is 20-18-1 against the Volunteers in Knoxville, including a 29-9 victory in the Crimson Tide's last visit to Neyland Stadium in 2008. Last season in Tuscaloosa, Alabama used two blocked field goals — the second of which came as time expired — by Terrence Cody in the fourth quarter to hold off the Volunteers in Tuscaloosa, 12-10.
NEXT GAME: Alabama finally gets its turn at a bye week on the weekend of Oct. 30 before another road game at LSU — the fifth in seven games — on Saturday, November 6. The Crimson Tide lead the series 45-23-5 and have won two straight in the series. UA is 25-8-2 against LSU in Tiger Stadium, including a 27-21 overtime victory in the Crimson Tide's last visit to Baton Rouge in 2008. Last year, Alabama got a 73-yard scoring catch from Julio Jones in the fourth quarter to seal a 24-15 win over the Tigers in Bryant-Denny Stadium.