Alabama vs. Georgia score, takeaways: No. 2 Tide shut out No. 3 Bulldogs in second half for dominant win

Even a positive COVID-19 test in the middle of a game week could not stop Nick Saban from continuing his streak of perfection against his former assistants as No. 2 Alabama outlasted No. 3 Georgia 41-24 on Saturday night in a game with SEC championship and College Football Playoff implications. Alabama announced several hours before kickoff that Saban had been cleared to coach from the sideline following a series of negative tests, and he oversaw another offensive masterpiece from the Crimson Tide as he improved to 22-0 all-time against his former assistants.

Georgia led 24-17 in the second quarter after scoring on four consecutive first-half possessions. But Alabama stole some momentum by driving into scoring range with 23 seconds left until halftime before Will Reichard hit a 52-yard field goal as time expired in the first half. The Crimson Tide never looked back. After punting on its first series of the third quarter, Alabama launched an aerial assault that even the vaunted Georgia defense could not slow. The Tide closed the game on a 24-0 run, shutting out the Bulldogs in the second half.

Alabama quarterback Mac Jones distributed four touchdown passes with two going to DeVonta Smith and one to Jaylen Waddle. Those two wide receivers combined for 17 catches and 328 yards receiving against a Georgia defense that had allowed just 12.3 points per game in its first three victories. Jones completed 24 of 32 passes for 417 yards with his lone interception coming on his first throw of the game, while star running back Najee Harris grinded out 152 yards and a touchdown on 31 carries.

The win was Alabama’s sixth straight against Georgia. The Bulldogs’ last victory in the series came in 2007 during Saban’s first season with the Crimson Tide. Back then, Kirby Smart was in his first season as an assistant at Alabama under Saban. He’s in his fifth season as Georgia’s coach now, but if he’s going to beat Saban, it will have to wait until a potential rematch in the SEC Championship Game — if the Dawgs can rebound from this loss.

CBS Sports was with you the entire way updating this story with analysis and highlights from the Alabama-Georgia game. Keep on reading in the live updates section below, and stay tuned for takeaways from the game.

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