TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – University of Alabama quarterback Jalen Hurts set a school record for passing yards by a quarterback in his first career starting assignment, throwing for 287 yards and two touchdowns to lead the University of Alabama football team to a 38-10 victory over the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers before a crowd of 101,821 on a sunny Saturday afternoon at Bryant-Denny Stadium on the campus of The University of Alabama.
In his first career start at quarterback for the Crimson Tide, Hurts completed 23 of 36 attempts for two touchdowns while passing for 287 yards without an interception. In addition to breaking the old starting debut passing yards mark of 285 set by Brodie Croyle vs. Arkansas on September 28, 2002, Hurts’ performance surpassed the previous Crimson Tide freshman mark of 167 yards set by Vince Sutton at Tennessee on October 20, 1984. Hurts connected on three passes of 40 yards or longer while leading a methodical Alabama attack that benefited from another outstanding performance by the Crimson Tide defense, which posted an interception return for a touchdown for the second consecutive week on a 55-yard return of a pickoff by safety Eddie Jackson in the second quarter.
Calvin Ridley‘s 129 yards and a touchdown on nine catches led all receivers, while ArDarius Stewart had five catches for 90 yards and a touchdown, including a 52-yarder. Gehrig Dieter had 56 yards on two catches, including a 40-yarder. Running back Damien Harris rushed for 45 yards on 11 carries to lead the Tide on the ground.
Defensively, Alabama was stingy as ever, allowing a touchdown for the first time this season with only 46 seconds remaining after WKU recovered a Tide fumble at the Alabama 26-yard line. The Tide was dominant at the line of scrimmage again, holding the Hilltoppers to 23 yards rushing on 22 attempts, an average of 1.0 yards per rush. Linebacker Reuben Foster recorded a team-best six total tackles, including five solos. Additionally, cornerback Minkah Fitzpatrick had five tackles and broke up a pass. As a unit, the Tide defense had four quarterback sacks, five tackles for losses, intercepted two passes, broke up five more passes, forced two fumbles, and was credited with six quarterback hurries.
Overall, the Tide gained 475 yards (351 passing and 124 rushing), picked up 23 first downs, and averaged 5.9 yards per play. WKU totaled 239 yards (216 passing and 23 rushing), along with converting 12 first downs and averaging 4.0 yards per play.
|11||Bo Scarbrough; Jalen Hurts; Damien Harris||USC (9/3/2016); WKU (9/10/2016)|
|138||Damien Harris||USC (9/3/2016)|
|2||Jalen Hurts||USC (9/3/2016)|
|73||Damien Harris||USC (9/3/2016)|
|36||Jalen Hurts||WKU (9/10/2016)|
|23||Jalen Hurts||WKU (9/10/2016)|
|287||Jalen Hurts||WKU (9/10/2016)|
|2||Jalen Hurts||USC (9/3/2016); WKU (9/10/2016)|
|71||Jalen Hurts||USC (9/3/2016)|
|9||Calvin Ridley||WKU (9/10/2016)|
|129||Calvin Ridley||WKU (9/10/2016)|
|2||ArDarius Stewart||USC (9/3/2016)|
|71||ArDarius Stewart||USC (9/3/2016)|
|1||Adam Griffith||USC (9/3/2016); WKU (9/10/2016)|
|36||Adam Griffith||WKU (9/10/2016)|
|5||JK Scott||USC (9/3/2016); WKU (9/10/2016)|
|58||JK Scott||WKU (9/10/2016)|
|13||Trevon Diggs||WKU (9/10/2016)|
|24||Trevon Diggs||USC (9/3/2016); WKU (9/10/2016)|
|8||Anthony Averett||USC (9/3/2016)|
|1||Marlon Humphrey; Ronnie Harrison; Eddie Jackson||USC (9/3/2016); WKU (9/10/2016)|