TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Greg McElroy completed 12 of 13 passes for 159 yards and two touchdowns and No. 10 Alabama routed fledgling Georgia State 63-7 on Thursday night.
It was the most points for the Crimson Tide (9-2) since a 66-3 win over Vanderbilt in 1979.
The game against a Football Championship Subdivision team competing in its first year of college football was predictably little more than a warmup for next week's showdown with No. 2 Auburn. The Panthers (6-5) are led by former Tide coach Bill Curry, who was more accustomed to being on the other side of Bryant-Denny Stadium abuse.
McElroy set an Alabama single-game completion percentage mark of 92.3 with a minimum of 10 attempts. Mark Ingram ran for 86 yards and a touchdown and Julio Jones caught seven passes for 86 yards and two scores before the stars yielded to the backups in the second quarter.
Next up is a much bigger challenge, with the Tide trying to stop Cam Newton and end the Tigers' national championship hopes. This was just a one-sided, don't-get-anybody-hurt prelude.
The game did feature one big milestone. It was the 20th straight win at Bryant-Denny Stadium, matching the second-longest such streak in school history.
Alabama had four interceptions — one returned for a touchdown — and Brandon Gibson took a blocked punt 22 yards for another score. The Tide came into the game in a five-way tie for the national lead in picks.
Alabama had more players score (eight) than the Panthers' first-down total of seven.
Georgia State's only points came on Albert Wilson's 97-yard kick return in the second quarter, when the Panthers were already down 42-0.
Alabama had 24 first downs and dominated in total yardage, 478-165.
Ingram and McElroy each moved up the career charts in this one.
McElroy passed Mike Shula and Andrew Zow to move into third on Alabama's list with 37 touchdown passes. Ingram tied John Parker Wilson for third with 43 total touchdowns.
The Panthers started the game with Drew Little's 55-yard pass to Emmanuel Ogbuehi, but didn't have another play longer than 12 yards after that. Little finished 4 of 11 for 69 yards.
Alabama was up 42-0 after 25 minutes, with McElroy and Jones playing pitch and catch. Jones caught touchdown passes of 8 and 10 yards. Ingram scored on a fourth-and-goal after getting stuffed on third down from the 1.
Plenty of Tide players got into the act, though. Freshman linebacker C.J. Mosley returned an interception 41 yards for a touchdown, his second interception return of the season. Gibson's return also came in the 28-point second quarter.
Eddie Lacy rushed for 81 yards for Alabama, which held out tailback Trent Richardson for the second straight game with a knee injury. He was hardly needed and is expected to play against Auburn.
Backup quarterback A.J. McCarron played much of the game, going 7-of-9 passing for 57 yards and a touchdown.