LSU vs. Alabama: Why the Tigers Have to Make History to Win ‘Game of the Century’

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LSU tops the Associated Press Top 25 ballot and was listed forward of Alabama within the first College Football Playoff rating of the season however might want to make historical past to win on the highway in opposition to the Crimson Tide on Saturday.

Few issues in school soccer have grow to be as troublesome to perform as defeating Alabama in Tuscaloosa since Nick Saban took cost of the Crimson Tide in 2007.

After ending 7-6 in his debut season—then decreased to 2-6 as Alabama needed to vacate 5 wins because of sanctions stemming from textbook-related infractions—Saban has remodeled Bryant-Denny Stadium right into a fortress.

The 68-year-old is 147-15 in 12 years in Tuscaloosa and apart from his first season he has misplaced simply 4 occasions at dwelling and by no means to the identical program. Incredibly, Saban has gained 5 nationwide titles in the identical interval.

LSU turned the second member of that unique membership in 2011, when it handed his former coach the one defeat of the season after profitable 9-6 in Alabama following a triple-overtime battle.

As would be the case on Saturday, LSU arrived into the most recent instalment of the “Game of the Century” because the No.1 ranked staff within the AP Top 25 ballot, with Alabama at No.2.

Saban did not place a lot emphasis on rankings then and operates by the identical philosophy now, one thing he shares along with his LSU counterpart, Ed Orgeron.

“I’m not really big on rankings and all that kind of stuff, but I know that they are a really, really good team,” the previous mentioned throughout his press convention earlier this week.

Orgeron agreed, suggesting greater video games than the “Game of the Century” might await each groups later this season.

“It’s the biggest game on our schedule but there’ll be bigger games down the road for us,” he was quoted as saying by Sports Illustrated.

LSU vs. Alabama: Why the Tigers Have to Make History to Win 'Game of the Century'
Joe Burrow #9 of the LSU Tigers in motion in opposition to the Auburn Tigers at Tiger Stadium on October 26 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Chris Graythen/Getty

A yr earlier than the loss to LSU, Cam Newton impressed Auburn to win a memorable comeback, because the Tigers worn out a 24-7 deficit at halftime to win 28-27.

Texas A&M defeated Alabama 29-24 in Tuscaloosa in 2012, earlier than then-No. 15 ranked Ole Miss left Bryant-Denny Stadium with 43-37 win in September 2015.

The loss to the Rebels marked Alabama’s fourth defeat at dwelling in just below 5 years and it was additionally the final time a staff left Tuscaloosa with a win.

In the intervening 4 years, the Crimson Tide has gained 31 straight video games at dwelling—the longest dwelling profitable run within the nation—and no person has come to inside three landing of Alabama in Tuscaloosa since LSU misplaced 24-10 two years in the past.

To put Alabama’s dominance into context, the Crimson Tide is 39-1 straight up as the house favourite because the College Football Playoff was launched in 2014.

Since Orgeron took over as the total time head coach in 2017, LSU’s total file in opposition to the unfold is 6-Zero and its highway file is an unblemished 3-0, however the Tigers have misplaced the final eight conferences in opposition to their SEC West rivals and Alabama wants one other three wins to equal the longest profitable run within the rivalry’s historical past—the Crimson Tide gained 11 straight video games between 1971 and 1981.

More worryingly for the Tigers, they’ve failed to attain in two of the final three conferences in opposition to Alabama.

Getting on the scoreboard ought to not be a priority, as LSU ranks fourth nationwide in each whole offense and scoring offense and Joe Burrow has developed right into a Heisman Trophy favourite in his senior yr.

The LSU quarterback has thrown for two,805 yards, 30 landing passes—each figures are second greatest within the nation—and simply 4 interceptions, whereas finishing 78.Eight % of his passes.

Burrow has been essential for the Tigers up to now, as they raced to an 8-Zero begin to the season and have become the primary staff within the AP period to defeat three ranked packages—Florida, Auburn and Texas—within the first eight weeks of the marketing campaign.

If LSU is to put in writing one other chapter of historical past on Saturday, Burrow might have an excellent greater function to play.

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