Great Iron Bowls throughout the years

81usaf92

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I wouldn't call the '21 Iron Bowl boredom, it just built tension throughout the game until the moment was right. Bama failed to get a 1st down with 2 minutes to go and it felt like the game was over. Bryce takes Bama on a 98-yard drive in less than a minute with no timeouts. Four overtimes. Amazing.
2021 iron bowl maybe the most boring game in the series next to the 9-0 game in 2000. Really until the final drive, it was a game of two horrible OCs vs two mediocre DCs. Yeah the last minute was exciting for an Alabama fan, but it’s going to be only remembered for a drive in a non championship year, and nothing else.

This wasn’t one of those 2011 LSU games in which great defenses dominated pedestrian offenses and ST was going to decide a game of equal teams. This was just a game in which a bad team was in a game that they had no business being in because a very good team decided to let Bill O’Brien call plays until the last 2 minutes.
 
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Probius

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2021 iron bowl maybe the most boring game in the series next to the 9-0 game in 2000. Really until the final drive, it was a game of two horrible OCs vs two mediocre DCs. Yeah the last minute was exciting for an Alabama fan, but it’s going to be only remembered for a drive in a non championship year, and nothing else.

This wasn’t one of those 2011 LSU games in which great defenses dominated pedestrian offenses and ST was going to decide a game of equal teams. This was just a game in which a bad team was in a game that they had no business being in because a very good team decided to let Bill O’Brien call plays until the last 2 minutes.
There have been plenty of classic Iron Bowls that were in non-championship years. And you mean non-national championship year. Bama still did win the SEC championship and that is a big deal. The 1984 and 1985 Iron Bowls were classics in years Bama had no chance of winning a national championship. Same thing with 1996, which was my first Iron Bowl and a game I will never forget. In 1996, no one cared that Bama had no chance at a national championship, we just wanted to win a big rivalry game.
 

81usaf92

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There have been plenty of classic Iron Bowls that were in non-championship years. And you mean non-national championship year. Bama still did win the SEC championship and that is a big deal. The 1984 and 1985 Iron Bowls were classics in years Bama had no chance of winning a national championship. Same thing with 1996, which was my first Iron Bowl and a game I will never forget. In 1996, no one cared that Bama had no chance at a national championship, we just wanted to win a big rivalry game.
14, 85, and 94 are probably the greatest IBs in history in terms of games that Alabama has won. All 3 have 3 things in common. 1) equal teams 2) actual tension 3) non NATIONAL championship years. While 94 has kinda lost its luster because 96 and 99 had more important narratives, it still was a great game with real tension and stakes between two equal teams.

96 and 99 are the two most important IBs in the 90’s for most Bama fans because 96 was a great ending and Stallings last IB. And 99 we broke the curse at JHS. 96 is still one of my favorites.

21’s tension really is BoB screwing us over on the road like he has done in pretty much every road game in the last 2 years. Auburn had a lead with a minute left with Finley as their quarterback and only 10 points. 9 other teams scored more points vs Auburn that year than we did vs them in regulation. This isn’t one of those bogus “throw out the record book” lines that we try to tell ourselves. It really was an OC out of his depth.

Had the drive happened 3-4 minutes earlier then absolutely no one would consider it a great game. Everyone would basically look at it how we look at the aTm and Texas games from this year… needless gut checks against vastly inferior opponents because of dumb play calling and execution.

Calling the 21 IB a great game is like calling the 09 Tennessee game a great game. It is remembering key emotional points and forgetting how boring 99% of the game actually was. It’s okay, but it’s still hard to watch the game outside of very condensed highlights.
 

TopBamaBloke

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I enjoyed 2015. Griffith kicked some clutch field goals, and I think Derrick Henry’s long TD at the end helped him edge out McCaffery for the Heisman.

Was anyone here at the 1959 game? YouTube footage of it shows some of our fans trying to bring down a goalpost. It had to be a special win considering the miserable seasons of the mid to late 50s.
 
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UAH

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The 85 game, in all honesty, probably moved me from being a follower of CFB to a passionate fan of the game. A friend of mine (my Oregon bud I've talked about here who grew up with a bone disease raised by his grandparents and is originally from Washington state so - Huskies and N Dame) said if he wanted to make someone a fan of the game in the 80s, he'd put on the last 12 minutes of the 1985 Iron Bowl over any other game.

If you lived it, I think, the chills are still there.
That has to be the most exciting Alabama win up until last year. There have been so many games for me that it is difficult to parse them out!
 

TideEngineer08

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I actually did not watch the full 2021 game. We were on vacation, walking through the Tennessee aquarium, and I was following on gamecast and my sister's text messages.

I tried watching in the condo until halftime but was so disgusted and sick that I let my boys have their way and we went ahead and went out. While the win was exhilarating, even following it the way I did, and I'm sure especially so for those watching it, the overall game was so disgusting and nauseating that I can't rank it up there with 1994 or 1996 (I was just 2 when 1985 was played).
 

Tidewater

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My favorite Iron Bowls were all the ones in which Bama kicked the living crap out of the Barn.
My personal favorite was 2008.
With Bama up 29-0, the punter shanks a punt and Coach Saban gives him an ear full: "Don't you know how much I hate these guys?" Instant man-crush.
 
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selmaborntidefan

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14, 85, and 94 are probably the greatest IBs in history in terms of games that Alabama has won. All 3 have 3 things in common. 1) equal teams 2) actual tension 3) non NATIONAL championship years. While 94 has kinda lost its luster because 96 and 99 had more important narratives, it still was a great game with real tension and stakes between two equal teams.
This is all reasonable.


96 and 99 are the two most important IBs in the 90’s for most Bama fans because 96 was a great ending and Stallings last IB. And 99 we broke the curse at JHS. 96 is still one of my favorites.

21’s tension really is BoB screwing us over on the road like he has done in pretty much every road game in the last 2 years. Auburn had a lead with a minute left with Finley as their quarterback and only 10 points. 9 other teams scored more points vs Auburn that year than we did vs them in regulation. This isn’t one of those bogus “throw out the record book” lines that we try to tell ourselves. It really was an OC out of his depth.
I'll spot him a tiny bit in that the Jameson ejection limited an already limited offense, but you're correct here.


Had the drive happened 3-4 minutes earlier then absolutely no one would consider it a great game. Everyone would basically look at it how we look at the aTm and Texas games from this year… needless gut checks against vastly inferior opponents because of dumb play calling and execution.

Calling the 21 IB a great game is like calling the 09 Tennessee game a great game. It is remembering key emotional points and forgetting how boring 99% of the game actually was. It’s okay, but it’s still hard to watch the game outside of very condensed highlights.
Yeah, I know it's a "to each his own," but I'll never watch the game again - and that TO ME is the litmus test of "great."
 

TIDE24

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I think everyone has a different definition of great. I agree with some other comments the best ones are the ones that are not close. My two favorites are:

  • 1990 - My senior year post Curry and only win while I was in school
  • 2008 - 36-0 and broke the streak in awesome fashion
 
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