COLUMBIA, Mo. — Nick Saban came off the field Saturday and sized up the afternoon for No. 1 Alabama.
“It was tough sledding out there today, guys,” the Crimson Tide coach said. The thing is, he was speaking more about the weather than the opponent.
“For the conditions, I was pleased with the balance that we had,” he said.
Eddie Lacy and T.J. Yeldon gave Alabama a pair of 100-yard rushers in the same game for the first time this season and the duo combined for five scores as Alabama beat Missouri 42-10 in a soggy, lightning-delayed game. The Crimson Tide had a season-high 533 total yards and held Missouri to 129 yards – and just 3 yards rushing.
“Basically the offensive line came out and they dominated,” Lacy said. “I mean, every time we made a big run it was because they made a big hole for us.”
Center Barrett Jones put it like this: “Probably the best we played all year, given we had a break.”
The first matchup of coaches who were former Kent State teammates was no contest, with Alabama pummeling a team hampered by injuries at quarterback and the offensive line. The Tide (6-0, 3-0 SEC) led 21-0 late in the first quarter en route to their 10th straight victory, all by 19 or more points.
“That is maybe the best team I have ever seen,” Missouri coach Gary Pinkel said..
Alabama did enough things right after the unscheduled break to disappoint the few thousand fans who didn’t leave for good during the 38-minute lightning delay. The Tide were awaiting the extra-point kick for a 28-0 cushion with 8:40 to go in the half after Yeldon’s second scoring run when the game was halted.
Missouri’s Marcus Murphy set a school single-season record with his fourth kick return for touchdown, a 98-yard kickoff return in the second quarter right after the weather delay.
But the Tigers (3-4, 0-4) have been outscored 126-55 in their first season in the SEC, and have been competitive to the finish in only last week’s 19-15 loss at home to Vanderbilt.