Auburn Vs. Alabama Preview: Can the Tide Actually Win One in Tuscaloosa?

Kelly Lambert-US PRESSWIRE

You might be surprised at how few Iron Bowl games Alabama has actually won in its home city. Just how likely is that number to grow by one this weekend?

Auburn Tigers vs. Alabama Crimson Tide, 3:30 p.m. ET, CBS

Alabama has defeated Auburn once in Tuscaloosa. When you see that for the first time, you rub your eyes a little bit, refocus them to make sure you're reading it correctly, and then begin to wonder: How has a team with Alabama's pedigree defeated its main rival just once in its home stadium.

The chief reason is that there haven't been that many Iron Bowl games played in Tuscaloosa -- just eight. The two teams met there in 1895 and 1901 (combined Auburn margin of victory: 65-0) before the series began to be a nearly exclusively Birmingham event. The Iron Bowl would not visit Tuscaloosa again until 2000. The Tide's sole win in its home city came in 2008 with the 36-0 shellacking of Auburn that ended the Tigers' infamous "Fear the Thumb" winning streak. So Alabama has an overall 41-34-1 edge in the series, but most of those aren't going to help its home record.

The likelihood that Alabama will still have just one home win over Auburn after this weekend is exceedingly small. Even if there weren't so much on the line -- an Alabama loss would almost certainly make LSU the SEC West champion -- and even if the Tide weren't such a solid team this year, Auburn is extraordinarily bad.

There are a handful of categories in which Auburn's does not fall lower than 10th in the SEC, and none of them are of the particularly impressive kind: rushing offense (ninth), net punting (eighth), punt returns (eighth), kickoff returns (third) and passing yardage defense (eighth). There's a reason Gene Chizik is the fourth most-likely SEC coach to lose his job this year, and he's only that low on the list because the competition is fierce.

Despite the disappointing loss to Texas A&M two weeks ago, Alabama remains one of the best teams in the SEC. The rivalry game and the reverse home-field advantage might allow the Tigers to keep this one close for a while. But in the end, Alabama's punch will be too much for the Tigers.

Alabama 45, Auburn 17

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Team Speed Kills

You must be a member of Team Speed Kills to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Team Speed Kills. You should read them.

Join Team Speed Kills

You must be a member of Team Speed Kills to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Team Speed Kills. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker