Alabama 24, S. Mississippi 13
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) _ Mike Shula threw for two touchdowns as 20th-ranked Alabama, coming from behind in the fourth period, defeated Southern Mississippi 24-13 Saturday in a college football game.
Shula’s first scoring toss, a 5-yarder to Al Bell on the Crimson Tide’s first possession, gave him 15 touchdown passes for the season, breaking a team record set by Walter Lewis in 1983.
The non-conference victory put Alabama at 7-2-1, with its season finale coming against Auburn in two weeks, one week after bowl bids go out. Southern Mississippi, 6-4, ends its season next week against Tulane.
Southern Mississippi took a 13-10 lead when Shelton Gandy dived over from the 1-yard line. Alabama started a 41-yard drive late in the third period, capped by Shula’s 4-yard touchdown pass to Angelo Stafford on the first play of the final quarter.
Linebacker Wayne Davis intercepted for Alabama on Southern Mississippi’s next possession, and the Tide moved 53 yards to score on a Gene Jelks 4-yard run. A 27-yard Shula-to-Jelks pass was the big play in the drive.
Rex Banks hit field goals of 33 and 32 yards for Southern Mississippi in the first half, and Van Tiffin kicked a 41-yarder for Alabama as the half ended.
Souther Mississippi, with Andrew Anderson completing passes of 13, 18 and 35 yards, moved 77 yards to take its only lead before Alabama rallied.
Alabama intercepted Anderson and Robert Ducksworth twice each and recovered one fumble, but was able to cash in only on Davis’ interception.
The Tide wasted a scoring opportunity after tackle John Hand grabbed a screen pass at the Southern Mississippi 27. But the Golden Eagles pushed Alabama back to the 32 and Tiffin missed a 49-yard field goal attempt.
Shula completed 13 of 23 passes for 122 yards and suffered one interception when a pass was deflected at the Alabama 30. Banks kicked his second field goal after Southern Mississippi moved to the 16-yard line.
Bell’s scoring catch gave him nine touchdowns for the season.
Anderson completed 5 of 12 passes for 99 yards and rushed for 43 yards.
Jelks rushed for 62 yards and Craig Turner ran for 57 yards for Alabama.