TUSCALOOSA, ALA. – A hard-running Derrick Henry and No. 7 Alabama's equally punishing defense stole the show.
Henry ran for 210 yards and three touchdowns and the Crimson Tide's unrelenting defense smothered Leonard Fournette in a 30-16 victory over No. 4 Louisiana State on Saturday night.
The Crimson Tide (8-1, 5-1 Southeastern Conference) physically dismantled the previously unbeaten Tigers (7-1, 4-1) in the second half. It was a physical, no-frills performance days after some questioned the team's No. 4 College Football Playoff ranking. LSU came in at No. 2 in the CFP ranking.
"I think it shows we're ready to play whoever, whenever, and that we kind of deserve to be in the College Football Playoff again," said Alabama linebacker Dillon Lee, who had a key second-half interception.
Henry carried 38 times. Fournette, the nation's leading rusher, gained only 31 yards on 19 carries. His previous season low was 154 yards against Western Kentucky.
Fournette didn't get much help from the rest of the offense; the Tigers were outgained 434-182. LSU came in averaging 309 rushing yards and finished with 54.
Brandon Harris, fresh from a third consecutive 200-yard game, made a few big plays but couldn't sustain anything. He was 6-for-19 passing for 128 yards with a touchdown and an interception.
By comparison, Alabama's Jake Coker was 18-for-24 for 184 yards.
Henry helped Alabama drain the final 9-plus minutes after taking over at the 8. The Tide's Adam Griffith kicked a 55-yard field goal in the final seconds of the first half after LSU had produced a tying 10-point flurry. Tide coach Nick Saban initially sent out punter JK Scott, but reconsidered.