At the half: Alabama 24, Auburn 7

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Alabama jumped out to a 24-0 advantage and leads No. 2 Auburn 24-7 at the half.

Here’s a quick halftime analysis:

Turning point: With his team trailing 14-0 in the first quarter, Auburn’s Nick Fairley sacked Alabama quarterback Greg McElroy on third down, seemingly coming up with a key stop. But Fairley was hit with a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for his celebration on the field, giving the Crimson Tide a 4th-and-4 at the Auburn 32. Alabama went for it and converted, and McElroy hit Darius Hanks a few plays later on a 12-yard touchdown pass to make it a 21-0 game.

Player of the half: McElroy was 19-of-23 for a career-high 335 yards passing and two touchdowns. He opened the game by hitting his first 12 passes.

Stat of the half: Alabama had 11 first downs to Auburn’s zero first downs in the first quarter, and Auburn quarterback Cam Newton was held to minus-10 yards on nine carries.

What Auburn needs to do: The Tigers had two huge defensive plays in the first half to keep the Crimson Tide from scoring even more points, but they have to do a better job on first down and get some three-and-outs early in the second half if they're going to get back into this game.