Rolling with the Tide: Alabama versus MercerBy Cody Estremera | 11/19/2017 9:05pm
Alabama's senior class ended its Bryant-Denny career with a 56-0 beatdown of Mercer. The senior class tied the NCAA football record for wins by a class, set by the 2016 Alabama seniors, with 51 wins.
Player of the Game: Dylan Moses
Dylan Moses got his first career start against the Bears, and he showed off. The former five-star recruit finished with a game-high 11 tackles, more than double second place Deionte Thompson, who finished with five tackles.
“I was just proud of him,” linebacker Rashaan Evans said. “Today was a day to showcase his skills. I believed in his skill set, and I feel like he showed that today.”
Moses also intercepted Mercer quarterback Kaelan Riley once.
Plays of the game:
Alabama marched down the field on its first possession of the game. It took just 3:33 before the Crimson Tide found the end zone, when Jalen Hurts found tight end Irv Smith from eight yards out.
Late in the second quarter, Mercer had drove down field to the Alabama 16-yard line. Moses stepped up and intercepted the pass over the middle of the field and returned it 11 yards to the Alabama 20. That was the only time Mercer was able to reach the red zone.
On the first play of the second quarter, Hurts and Ridley connected for the third and final time of the day. Hurts took the snap from shotgun and pump faked, which fooled almost the entire Mercer defense. Ridley, who was on a stop-and-go route, juked out his defender and was wide open and ran 66 yards for his third touchdown on the season.
Ridley passed Julio Jones for third all time in Alabama receiving history.
“Everybody comes in wanting to do great things,” Ridley said. “I didn’t see myself doing stuff like this, but I’m happy that I am.”
Key to the game: passing
Alabama put on a show against the Mercer secondary. Hurts and Tua Tagovailoa threw for a combined 265 yards and six touchdowns. Each quarterback had three touchdowns on the day.
“I think Jalen was pretty efficient in what he did,” Alabama head coach Nick Saban said.
Mercer's passing attack was kept in check, throwing for 54 yards and only completing 31.8 percent of its passes. They were also picked off three times.
Kaelan Riley: 6 of 19, 44 yards, three interceptions.
Tee Mitchell: 17 carries, 57 yards
Sam Walker: four catches, 33 yards
Jalen Hurts: 7 of 7, 180 yards, three touchdowns
Bo Scarbrough: five carries, 54 yards
Calvin Ridley: three catches, 103 yards, one touchdown