AUBURN, Ala. — For a large portion of Saturday’s Iron Bowl, it felt like Auburn had a chance to pull off one of the biggest upsets in the rivalry’s history. But No. 2 Alabama made the critical plays down the stretch to hold off the Tigers, 29-13.
“They (the Auburn players) fought their guts out,” Auburn coach Gus Malzahn said after the loss. “Our goal was to get the game to the fourth quarter. We just weren’t able to make the plays when we needed to.”
Alabama (11-1, 7-1 SEC) will head to the SEC championship game, while Auburn (6-6, 2-6 SEC) awaits to see which bowl game it will be playing in. The Tigers finish the regular season with a .500 record after being ranked No. 6 in the AP preseason standings. Still, Malzahn expressed optimism about his team heading into the bowl game.
“Right now, we are hurting over this game,” Malzahn said before adding that the team still has a bowl game left to prepare for. “We have to get better and we are going to get better. I guarantee that.”