Young, No. 2 Alabama roll over Louisiana-Monroe, 63-7

Louisiana-Monroe v Alabama
Getty Images

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Alabama scored on a long touchdown pass, a pick-six and a blocked punt.

And that was just the first six minutes.

Bryce Young passed for three touchdowns and rushed for a fourth, Will Anderson Jr. scored on an interception return and No. 2 Alabama rolled to a 63-7 victory over Louisiana-Monroe on Saturday.

The Crimson Tide (3-0) scored on offense, defense and special teams in the first six minutes and raced to a 28-0 first-quarter lead. It was a whirlwind start against the 49 1/2-point underdog Warhawks (1-2) a week after a much closer-than-expected victory over Texas cost Alabama the No. 1 ranking.

Afterward, Tide coach Nick Saban challenged the team to play to the program’s always lofty standard more consistently.

“There’s some evidence out there that this is the standard we want to play to,” Saban said, noting that the competition gets tougher with Southeastern Conference play upcoming.

It wasn’t a seamless performance throughout for either the Tide offense or Young, the reigning Heisman Trophy winner. But special teams came through, including a school-record for punt return yards.

Young completed 13 of 18 passes for 236 yards but also threw his first two interceptions of the season. He did run for a 7-yard score, where he spun near the goal line and dove across.

Anderson returned his first career interception 25 yards for a touchdown, one play after Young’s initial pick. The national sacks leader a year ago, he also got his second sack of the season.

“What can’t he do?” cornerback/return man Kool-Aid McKinstry said.

“He was probably surprised he caught it, I ain’t gonna lie,” linebacker Henry To'oto'o said. “He had a little stiff-arm and he was just watching it when they did the highlights on the board. And he was like, `I can’t believe I did that.”‘

Malachi Moore got a short scoop-and-score after Ja’Corey Brooks’ blocked punt.

Chandler Rogers completed 11 of 21 passes 96 yards for Louisiana-Monroe and was intercepted once. Malik Jackson ran for an 11-yard touchdown, set up by the Tide’s failed fourth-down attempt.

“It went like most people thought it would go,” Louisiana-Monroe coach Terry Bowden said. “They were just too good for us in every phase of the game. You could watch the video and say that’s kind of what you’re stepping into, but you still prepare for them not to play well or something to go wrong. And you have a better game.

“And as I talked to the team afterwards, they were so good in every phase.”

Jahmyr Gibbs remained the Tide’s most versatile weapon. He gained 36 yards on nine carries and caught four passes for 65 yards, including a 37-yard touchdown when he juked one defender and shed a couple of downfield tackle attempts.

The Tide outgained Louisiana-Monroe 509-169.


Louisiana-Monroe: Managed to keep a horrid start from snowballing even more for awhile and actually was only outgained 132-125 before Alabama’s final drive of the second half. Bowden is now 3-4 against the Tide, with the first six meetings as coach of rival Auburn from 1993-98.

Alabama: This one won’t mean much in the big picture for Alabama’s season, but it started out as a nice, swift rebound from the Texas game. The Tide did have a lull before a pristine Young-directed TD drive in the final two minutes before the half.


Alabama had 262 punt return yards to break a 75-year-old game record set against LSU in 1947. McKinstry flirted with scores on returns and Brian Branch produced one in the fourth quarter. McKinstry averaged 34 yards on his first four returns. Then Branch returned a punt 68 yards for a TD. Gibbs also had a 57-yard kick return.

“The blockers did their job and I can’t do anything but give them thanks for creating the lanes for me to take,” McKinstry said.


There’s no chance Alabama will overtake No. 1 Georgia on Sunday after the Bulldogs beat South Carolina 48-7. Chances are the Tide will stay put.


Alabama’s receivers, for the most part, are having quiet seasons. The tight ends, however, came up big on the final first-half drive. Cameron Latu had three catches, including a 38-yarder when he reached over a defender downfield. Freshman reserve Amari Niblack then caught his first pass, a 15-yard TD.


Alabama hosts Vanderbilt in the Southeastern Conference opener.

Louisiana-Monroe hosts Louisiana.

Terry Bowden hired to lead Louisiana-Monroe

Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports

MONROE, La. — Former Auburn coach Terry Bowden has been hired by Louisiana-Monroe to rebuild a program that went 0-10 this season.

Bowden, the son of former Florida State coaching great Bobby Bowden, has been serving as a graduate assistant at Clemson the last two years.

Terry Bowden, 64, had a successful stint as Auburn’s head coach from 1993-98, going 47-17. That came to a tumultuous end with a midseason firing.

After a long run in broadcasting as a television and as a radio analyst, he returned to coaching in 2009 with Division II North Alabama. Bowden was back in Division I with Akron, leading the Zips from 2012-18 and going 35-52 with two bowl appearances.

Earlier this month, Louisiana-Monroe fired Matt Viator after five seasons. He went 19-39 and 15-24 in the Sun Belt.

Lewis accounts for 5 TDS, No. 23 ULL beats ULM 70-20

Scott Clause - USA TODAY Sports Images

MONROE, La. — Levi Lewis passed for three touchdowns and ran for two more in less than three quarters, and No. 23 Louisiana-Lafayette routed winless Louisiana-Monroe 70-20 on Saturday.

Running backs Trey Regas and Elijah Mitchell each rushed for more than 90 yards and scored one touchdown apiece for Louisiana-Lafayette (8-1, 6-1 Sun Belt). Bralen Trahan returned an interception 53 yards for a score during a second quarter in which ULL scored four straight touchdowns to blow the game open.

The Ragin’ Cajuns have won five straight since their lone loss to 16th-ranked and unbeaten Coastal Carolina, which is scheduled to host ULL in the Sun Belt title game on Dec. 19.

Jeremy Hunt had one touchdown passing and one rushing for Louisiana-Monroe (0-9, 0-6), which was playing for the first time in three weeks because of a COVID-19 outbreak that led to the cancellation of a game against Louisiana Tech last weekend after ULM had the previous weekend off.

The Ragin’ Cajuns also had an outbreak that led to the cancellation of their Nov. 14 game against Central Arkansas. Cajuns coach Billy Napier was among those who contracted COVID-19 and traveled to Monroe separately from his team on Saturday after isolating and not attending any practices during the past week.

ULL took the lead for good on Regas’ 11-yard scoring run less than four minutes into the game. Lewis’ 11-yard touchdown run made it 14-0 before ULM responded with Hunt’s 1-yard TD pass to Camero Darling.

Mitchell’s 44-yard run through the middle made it 21-7 and the Warhawks responded once more, briefly pulling within a touchdown again on Hunt’s 7-yard run.

But ULL then scored 35 straight points, starting with Lewis’ 1-yard pass to Neal Johnson early in the second quarter. The Cajuns’ fourth TD of the second quarter came when Lewis hit Kyren Lacy from 22 yards out with 17 seconds left in the half.

Lewis led one more touchdown drive in the third quarter before he and several other starters were substituted out for good.

Lewis finished 18-of-25 passing for 147 yards without an interception. He also rushed for 55 yards.

Trey Amos made ULL’s 13th interception this season when he snagged ULM backup Garret Kahmann’s deep pass and returned it 51 yards to the Warhawks 16.