“I guess if this thing comes up short, he can field it and run it out. Alright, here we go — 56 yarder. It’s got — not it does not have the leg, and Chris Davis takes it in the back of the end zone.”
If you were to play this audio clip for any college football fan, chances are they would be able to tell you exactly what happens next. Dubbed the “Kick Six”, this is one of the most “famous” moments in the history of the sport. But how did we get here?
This rivalry, the Iron Bowl, is what some consider to be the best rivalry in the sport. Just take it from former Alabama coach, Bear Bryant. To him, “Nothing matters more than beating that cow college on the other side of the state”, referring to Auburn. He wasn’t wrong either. The past four winners of this game have all gone on to win the National Championship; Alabama in 2009, 2011, and 2012, and Auburn in 2010.
However, this game was important for both schools this year. Since the “Cam-Back” in 2010, when Cam Newton and Auburn won after scoring 24 unanswered points, the Tigers offense hadn’t put up any points in the Iron Bowl. The only time the Tigers scored was when the defense found the endzone twice in 2011. When Auburn Quarterback, Nick Marshall, broke a huge run for an Auburn score early in the game, the number four team in the nation breathed a sigh of relief. Sure, they needed some luck to get here, like the prayer and Jordan-Hare vs Georgia. Regardless, they had gone from being unranked to being up against Alabama. However, they had to remember who they were facing.
Nick Saban is a great coach. The Tide had steam-rolled all of their opponents that year, including against Johnny Football. The Tide came into this game looking to bring themselves just one step closer to a three-peat. This outcome was looking more and more likely as the game continued.
After scoring three unanswered touchdowns, the Tide lead Auburn by two scores. CBS Sports announcers were just dumbfounded when they saw Saban’s plan to kick a field goal here however. It would have made sense if this happened earlier in the game. Senior kicker, Kade Foster, had only missed one kick on the season. After missing two kicks tonight, two from 44 and one from 33, Coach Saban wanted to try something… different. They wanted to try Adam Griffith. He was 1-for-2 in his career, and he was going to give Alabama a shot to win this crazy game. In the back of the endzone stood one, Chris Davis. Auburn had actually had a different player back there to attempt to return this kick, but called a time out to sub in Davis, statistically the best return-man in the nation.
You know what happens next.
“He’ll run it out to the 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 45… THERE GOES DAVIS! Davis is going to run it all the way back! Auburn’s going to win the football game! Auburn’s going to win the football game! He ran the missed field goal back! He ran it back 109 yards! They’re not going to keep ’em off the field tonight! HOLY COW! OH MY GOD! Auburn wins! Auburn has won the Iron Bowl!”
Image: Stadium / YouTube