DURHAM, N.C. – Mark Ingram returned to the lineup for Alabama after missing the first two games of the season and ran for 151 yards with a pair of touchdowns on just nine carries to lead the top-ranked Crimson Tide to an easy 62-13 victory over Duke at Wallace Wade Stadium.
Greg McElroy threw for 258 yards while completing 14-of-20 passes with three touchdowns and one interception for Alabama. Julio Jones caught five passes for 106 yards with a touchdown in the lopsided victory. Trent Richardson added 61 yards on the ground, including a 45-yard scoring jaunt, and also returned a kickoff for a touchdown, while Eddie Lacy also reached the end zone for the Tide, who piled up 315 rushing yards and outgained Duke by a 626-302 margin.
Sean Renfree threw for a 144 yards with a touchdown for Duke (1-2), which fell to 0-11 all-time against No. 1 teams.
Ingram took a handoff 48 yards on the first play from scrimmage, then added a three-yard run before McElroy threw a nine-yard touchdown pass to Darius Hanks to cap the quick series for a 7-0 lead. The Tide went to the air on their next possession, as McElroy connected on three of his four throws during the six-play set and capped it with an 18-yard scoring strike to Jones.
Ingram ignited the next Alabama offensive series with a 50-yard run on the first play and was rewarded soon after with a one-yard touchdown run to make it 21-0 just under nine minutes into the contest. Renfree was picked off by Dre Kirkpatrick on Duke’s next possession and the Tide turned the mistake into another score, as Ingram found the end zone from 17 yards away.
The Blue Devils picked up their initial first down on their next series and drove far enough for a 22-yard field goal from Will Snyderwine late in the first period. McElroy was picked off early in the second quarter, but the Tide got the ball right back after a punt and the senior signal-caller ended a 56-yard drive with a 15-yard touchdown pass to Preston Dial.
Snyderwine drilled a 42-yard field goal with just over six minutes left in the half, but Richardson fielded the ensuing kickoff at the four-yard line, dropped the ball and picked it up before racing 91 yards for a touchdown to give the Tide a 42-6 lead.
Duke added a touchdown on an 11-yard connection between Renfree and Austin Kelly just 29 seconds before the intermission, but Alabama tacked on a 44-yard Cade Foster field goal as time expired for a 45-13 lead.
After a 21-yard Foster field goal on the first series of the third quarter, Richardson scored on a 45-yard run on the first play after a Duke punt to increase the lead to 55-13. Lacy, who fumbled inside the Duke five-yard line late in the third quarter, scored on a one-yard run early in the fourth to account for the final margin.