Van Tiffin kicked a 52-yard field goal, his fourth of the game, into the wind on the final play today to give Alabama a 25-23 Southeastern Conference football victory over seventh-ranked Auburn.
Auburn appeared to have victory assured when Reggie Ware scored from the one with less than a minute left. But Alabama quarterback Mike Shula moved the Crimson Tide close enough for Tiffin's kick.
"It's a great feeling," said Tiffin, who was carried off the field by his teammates.
"I've never experienced anything like it before . . . I'm going to remember this game for the rest of my life."
The victory left Alabama with an 8-2-1 record, 4-1-1 in the SEC, going into the Aloha Bowl on Dec. 28 against Southern California.
Auburn (8-3, 3-3) will face 9-2 Texas A&M in the Cotton Bowl on Jan. 1.
"I've been involved in a lot of games . . . but I've never been as filled up as I am today after this game," Alabama Coach Ray Perkins said. "I probably don't deserve to be associated with them, but I thank God I am."
Alabama took a 16-10 halftime lead on a one-yard run by Craig Turner and three field goals by Tiffin, from 26, 32 and 42 yards. Auburn got its points on a seven-yard run by Bo Jackson and a 49-yard field goal by Chris Johnson.
After a scoreless third period, Auburn moved 80 yards, mainly on Jackson's runs, to score on a one-yard dive by the senior tailback. Johnson's kick made it 17-16, Auburn.
Three plays later, freshman Gene Jelks raced 74 yards to put Alabama ahead, 22-17. A pass attempt for a two-point conversion failed.
Auburn took the kickoff to the 30. Pat Washington passed to Freddy Weygand for 21 yards, and Jackson got most of the rest before Ware scored for a 23-22 Auburn lead. A two-point conversion pass attempt was knocked down.
Jackson, whose rushing helped defeat Alabama his first two years, led Auburn's runners with 142 yards on 31 carries. It was revealed after the game that Jackson, who was criticized when he took himself out of two previous games with injuries, broke two ribs against Georgia two weeks ago.
"We have to keep our heads held high," said Jackson, who ended the regular season with 1,786 yards. "I'm glad we could come down and have fun."