Football

College football notes: Kick-Six still fresh for Alabama, Auburn

Auburn players have delighted in the frequent replays of the final play of last year's Iron Bowl. At Alabama, Chris Davis's last-play return of a missed field goal remains a sore subject.

Whether it causes heartache or elation, it's been hard to escape the play that sealed "Kick-Six" and Davis's name forever into the Iron Bowl vault. That's especially true now with the second-ranked Crimson Tide preparing to host the 15th-ranked Tigers Saturday night after the two bitter rivals produced one of college football's most memorable finishes.

"It shows up on the TV every now and again, and it breaks our heart every time," Tide safety Landon Collins said. "In one second they took our whole chance away of winning anything, and definitely it rewinds in my head. Definitely it will rewind in my head constantly throughout this week."

The Tide (10-1, 6-1 Southeastern Conference), the top-ranked team in the College Football Playoff rankings, is once again playing to keep its national title hopes alive. An Alabama win or a loss by No. 4 Mississippi State to No. 18 Mississippi secures a spot in the SEC championship game.

Last year, Davis's 109-yard return, only the fourth such play recorded by the NCAA, gave the fourth-ranked Tigers a 34-28 over the No. 1 Tide. They ultimately played for the national title instead of the Bama team many expected to get that shot.

Alabama's Adam Griffith, now the starting kicker, lined up for a 57-yard field goal attempt with one second remaining in a tied game. It fell short, Davis returned it from the back of the end zone and Auburn fans blanketed the length of the field in celebration.

Around the nation

LSU: Les Miles has never lost three straight as LSU's head coach, and he doesn't want to start now. The Tigers (7-4) must win at Texas A&M (7-4) on Thanksgiving Day to stop their current slide at two games and enhance their postseason possibilities.

"Our guys understand the things they need to do to get that (winning) feeling back," Miles said.

LSU will try to avoid its first three-game losing streak in 15 seasons.

North Carolina: Coach Larry Fedora apologized to Duke's David Cutcliffe after his team's celebration following the Tar Heels' victory against the Blue Devils left the visiting locker room damaged by spray paint. The school also says it will pay for the cleanup.

"The celebration in there obviously got out of hand," Fedora said "I wish it wouldn't have but it did."

The rivalry winner traditionally paints its shade of blue on the Victory Bell. The Tar Heels began spray-painting the bell near the field as the clock expired in Thursday's 45-20 road win, then rolled it to the locker room to continue the celebration.

Duke team spokesman Art Chase said damage was mostly to carpet, though paint was on an interior and exterior wall as well as in lockers, while "UNC" was written in at least one location.

Arkansas: Surging Arkansas faces the possibility of finishing the regular season without injured starting quarterback Brandon Allen, though Coach Bret Bielema is leaving open the possibility of his return this week.

Allen missed the second half of Arkansas' 30-0 win over Mississippi after being hit on his right hip, hobbling off the field midway through the second quarter.

The Razorbacks (6-5, 2-5 SEC), who have won back-to-back games, face No. 17 Missouri (9-2, 6-1) on Friday.

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