Led by Sims this time Alabama continues to shatter offensive records
ATLANTA — See if you’ve heard this one before: The University of Alabama set a bunch of offensive records on Saturday.
What’s different was that this time it wasn’t just junior wide receiver Amari Cooper getting his name in the record book.
With his 58-yard touchdown pass to senior wide receiver DeAndrew White in the second quarter, senior quarterback Sims surpassed AJ McCarron to set the program record for passing yards in a single season.
McCarron subsequently tweeted: “Congrats to my boy@_bsims6 on breaking the single season passing record. A proud mentor and big brother. You deserve it bro.”
On the same play Alabama set the program record for most passing yards in a single season.
Sims completed 23 of 27 attempts for 262 yards and two touchdowns to be named the game MVP. For the season he has 3,250 passing yards.
“I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a player go through any more than Blake went through for four years as a player, and never once did he ever not do whatever he needed to do to help the team,” Coach Nick Saban said. “He played on a scout team so many times when we’d play against a zone read quarterback, when he was the backup quarterback, never complained about it, and I’ve never seen a guy work so hard from last spring when he had an opportunity to be the quarterback, through the summer, and to work in fall camp and get the confidence of his players and execute well and just learn how to take what the defense gives.
“He has done a phenomenal job for us all year long.”
Additionally, Sims completed his first 10 attempts, to set an SEC Championship Game record (Florida’s Shane Matthews in 1992 and Danny Wuerffel in 1995). His 85.2 percent completion percentage was also a game record, topping the 77.1 (27 of 35) percent by Auburn’s Jason Campbell in 2004.
Sims became just the second quarterback in Alabama history to pass for 3,000 yards in a season with his 13-yard completion to senior fullback Jalston Fowler on the Crimson Tide’s first offensive play. He came in with 2,998 yards, while McCarron had 3,063 last season.
Cooper got his fair share too, though.
With his 10 receptions in the first half, Cooper passed Vanderbilt’s Jordan Matthews for most receptions in a season in Southeastern Conference history. Matthews had 112 receptions for 1,477 yards in 2013.
Cooper has 115 receptions for 1,656 yards on the season. He needs just 85 yards to break Josh Reed’s (LSU) record for a single season of 1740 set in 2001.
The 12 receptions against Missouri set an SEC title game record, topping Reidel Anthony of Florida’s 11 in 1996.
But the night really belonged to Sims:
“It’s a great feeling,” the game MVP said. “Back in high school, I played here my last game in the championship, and we lost. Pretty much I was just playing for everybody down the road in Gainesville High. And just pretty much just going out playing, doing everything that Coach Saban has taught me and Coach (Lane) Kiffin has taught me and just trust my players that they’re going to play hearts out and leave no regrets on the field.”