BY COLIN “BIG C” MACGUIRE
The Greenville Standard
On this date, Saturday, September 19, 1964 it was the beginning of the 1964 season for Alabama.
Alabama finished the 1963 season 9-2 and was ranked #8. They beat Conference Champion Ole Miss 12-7 in the Sugar Bowl.
Alabama was ranked #6 in the preseason AP poll. The season opener was against Georgia at then known Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa.
It was the only season opener in the Bryant Era in Tuscaloosa. The game was a sellout of 43,000. Now the capacity is over 100,000.
Georgia had a new head coach in Vince Dooley. It was the start of a 25-year career at Georgia.
Alabama scored first on a Hudson Harris 5-yard run in the first quarter. In the second quarter Georgia kicked a field goal to narrow the score 7-3.
Tide QB Joe Namath scored on an 8-yard run to make the score 14-3 at the half. Alabama scored 10 points in the third quarter which included a 27 yard field by David Ray and Namath on a 1-yard run.
In the fourth quarter, Namath scored on a five yard-run to make the final 31-3.
Alabama had 22 first downs to UGA’s six.
Alabama gained 224 yards on the ground, Georgia gained 82. Alabama gained 167 yards in the air, while Georgia gained 83.
Alabama had a total of 391 yards while Georgia gained 165.The star of the game was Joe Namath.
Namath was 16 of 21 for 167 yards and ran for 55 yards and three touchdowns. Namath’s 16 completions at that time tied school record with Harry Gilmer which was set in 1946.
Namath’s performance earned National Back of the Week by the Associated Press.
Next week September 26.