When victory is twice as sweet
Bear Bryant passed Amos Alonzo Stagg as the winningest coach in college football when the Crimson Tide won the 1981 Iron Bowl, 28-17.
Auburn trailed 16-3 with less than six minutes remaining in the 1972 contest. The Tigers came back to win, 17-16. Here's how it happened: Bill Newton blocked two punts. David Langer scooped up the ball both times for touchdowns.
Bryant underscored the importance of the game when he said he would "rather beat that cow college once than beat Texas 10 times."
You know it's a real rivalry when …
The two schools hate each other so much the game has to be played on neutral ground. That was the case between 1948 and 1989, when the teams played in Birmingham.
Bo knows …
When it's time to take out his "A" game. Jackson rushed for 256 yards in the 1983 Iron Bowl, leading Auburn to a 23-20 win.
How deep does it run?
The rivalry was suspended for about 40 years because the two schools couldn't agree on how many players could suit up, among other things.
When former Auburn star Fob James ran for governor in 1978, Alabama fans ran TV and newspaper ads asking Alabamans to just think about it: did they really want a former Auburn player in the governor's mansion?
Well, sometimes the fans agree …
Pat Dye was an Alabama assistant coach during that 1972 game mentioned above. "We were leading 16-0, and thoroughly dominating, and Auburn finally got close enough to kick a field goal," he recalled. "Everybody in the stadium Legion Field in Birmingham -- 35,000 on one side wearing red, 35,000 on the other wearing orange and blue -- got up and booed Shug (Jordan) for kicking the field goal.
"Our fans were booing because he'd spoiled the shutout, and their fans were booing because they thought he'd given up. As it turned out, that field goal was the winning margin - but it's the only time I've ever seen both teams' fans stand up and boo the same play."