1941 Alabama Crimson Tide football team

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1942 Cotton Bowl program

The 1941 Alabama Crimson Tide football team finished the season with a 9-2 mark, a 3rd-place finish in the Southeastern Conference title race, and a #20 ranking in the Associated Press poll.

The club was credited with a National Championship by the "Houlgate System", a mathematical ranking system devised by Carroll "Deke" Houlgate of Los Angeles, California and syndicated to newspapers between 1927 and 1958. That title is one of the twelve championships claimed by the school's sport's information office, and is by far the most controversial of the school's championship claims. It has been justified because the Houlgate System was the more established and respected selector at the time (as recognized by NCAA historians) and because Alabama played a longer season and more respectable opponents than other teams with claims.


  • September 27: Alabama defeated the Southwestern Louisiana Bulldogs 47-6 at Denny Field in Tuscaloosa.
  • October 4: Alabama was shut out 14-0 by the Mississippi State Maroons at Denny Field in Tuscaloosa with 18,000 fans on hand.
  • October 11: Alabama defeated the Howard Bulldogs 61-0 in Birmingham.
  • October 18: Alabama defeated the Tennessee Volunteers 9-2 in Knoxville with 35,000 in the stands.
  • October 25: Alabama defeated the Georgia Bulldogs 27-14 at Legion Field in Birmingham with 23,000 in attendance.
  • November 1: Alabama defeated the Kentucky Wildcats 30-0 in Tuscaloosa in their homecoming game.
  • November 8: Alabama defeated the Tulane Green Wave 19-4 before 50,000 at Tulane Stadium in New Orleans.
  • November 15: Alabama defeated the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets 20-0 in Birmingham with 25,000 on hand.
  • November 22: Alabama was beaten by the Vanderbilt Commodores 7-0 on a rain-soaked field in Nashville.
  • November 28: Alabama defeated the Miami Hurricanes 21-7 in Miami with 26,000 fans on hand.
  • January 1, 1942: Alabama recorded 7 interceptions, five recovered fumbles and a 72-yard Jimmy Nelson punt return touchdown to beat the Texas A&M Aggies in the 1942 Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Texas. The 29-21 victory came despite the Tide making only 1 first down and being outgained 309 yards to 75. 33,000 fans were on hand. At halftime 31 Texas, Oklahoma and Alabama seniors took the oath of enlistment in the Naval Air Corps for World War II.



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