Someone on the Crimson Tide probably could have run the one yard it needed to sore on its third offensive drive against the Tigers.
Instead, Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa dropped back and threw it to tight end Hale Hentges, who was open in the end zone. He caught the pass and was visibly excited about his touchdown. It was his only reception during the first half.
Hentges is a senior captain for the Crimson Tide.
At halftime, Hentges had 15 career receptions for 124 yards and six touchdowns. This season he caught four passes for 34 yards and three scores.
Alabama set a new SEC record for passing yards in a season during the first half against Clemson. The Crimson Tide entered the game with 4,559 yards, needing 34 yards to pass Texas A&M’s 2013 season for the record. Alabama broke the record on Tagovailoa’s 62-yard touchdown pass to Jerry Jeudy in the first quarter.
That 62-yarder was Jeudy’s 16th career touchdown reception, moving him into a tie for fifth place on the all-time list at Alabama. Teammate Henry Ruggs III and Ozzie Newsome also have 16 career touchdowns. Jeudy also moved into 15th place on Alabama’s career receiving yards list, passing Dennis Homan.
Tagovailoa also moved into sole possession of second place on Alabama’s all-time passing touchdown list. He entered the game tied with Jalen Hurts with 48 career touchdown passes.
Alabama’s permanent captains represented the Crimson Tide at the coin flip. Senior running back Damien Harris, senior tight end Hale Hentges, senior outside linebacker Christian Miller and senior center Ross Pierschbacher took the field together. … Alabama won the toss and elected to defer. Alabama finished 8-7 in coin tosses this season. The Crimson Tide elected to defer four times and to receive four times. … Attendance was announced at 74,814. … Former Alabama players Landon Collins, O.J. Howard, Tony Brown, Julio Jones, Rashaan Evans and Derrick Henry were in attendance for the game.
Sports Writer Terrin Waack contributed to this notebook. Reach Ben Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org or 205-722-0196.