News from the Tennessee Valley Sports

Independence Bowl
Alabama (6-6) vs.
Oklahoma State (6-6)

When: Today, 3:30 p.m.

Where: Independence Stadium, Shreveport, La.

Line: Oklahoma State by 21/2.

TV/radio: ESPN will carry the television broadcast. The radio broadcast can be heard on AM-1400, AM-730, AM-770 and FM-92.5.

Players to watch: For Alabama, itís running back Kenneth Darby. Every week, Darby appears ready to break out. Maybe in his last game at Alabama, the senior can get those 256 yards he needs to tie Shaun Alexanderís career rushing record. What does the Tide have to lose by handing the ball off to Darby almost every play?

For Oklahoma State, itís quarterback Bobby Reid. He is a dual threat with the mobility to tuck the ball down and run and the arm strength to throw it. And at 6-foot-3, 230 pounds, the sophomore can bruise a defense.

Key matchup: Alabama vs. itself. It will be interesting to see which Tide team shows up today. Alabama has been through so much since its Nov. 18 Iron Bowl loss to Auburn. How it will respond without having a head coach or a solid direction for the program is anyoneís guess.

Weather: Partly cloudy and 66 degrees at kickoff.

Last meeting: This is the first time the two schools have played.

Prediction: Alabama 23, Oklahoma State 10.

Josh Cooper, Daily Sports Writer

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