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The new standard for Iron Bowl lore

12/1/2013

AUBURN, Ala. -- Someday, someday, there will be a greater Iron Bowl finish than this one. Babe Ruth died, and the Yankees continue to play. Sinatra has come and gone, and people still sing. Forty-one years after "Punt Bama Punt," Chris Davis caught a field goal nine yards deep in the end zone, and started running.

So it's possible that the way that No. 4 Auburn dethroned No. 1 Alabama, 34-28, will be eclipsed. But at this moment Saturday night, with the cheers at Jordan-Hare Stadium still reverberating from here to Columbus, Ohio, it doesn't seem possible at all. With the clock showing all zeroes, Davis returned Adam Griffin's Hail Mary of a 57-yard field goal attempt 109 yards for a touchdown.

"We saw they had a guy back there," Alabama coach Nick Saban said. "Everybody knew they had to cover him. We just didn't, we didn't cover it right."

In the 15 seconds or so that it took Davis to sprint from end line to end line, Alabama lost its chance at a third consecutive BCS championship; Auburn won the SEC West and planted itself in the BCS title debate, No. 3 Ohio State saw its BCS hopes come to life, and the spectrum of emotions that any of us who enjoy football stretched a little beyond its limit.

"I knew when I caught the ball I would have room to run," Davis said, "and I knew we had bigger guys on the field to protect and that was all after that."

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