One of the biggest college football games in years will be played this Saturday. LSU and Alabama will square off in a meeting of the top 2 teams in the nation. It will be the first time in SEC history that the #1 and #2 teams will play each other during the regular season. This is a game that analysts and fans have had circled on their calendars since August as a game that would have significant national championship implications.
Alabama has one of the best running backs in the country in Trent Richardson (pictured). He is 7th in the country in rushing yardage and 2nd in touchdowns with 17. He has a nose for the endzone and is difficult to tackle. He will most definitely pose a challenge for the very talented LSU linebackers and defensive linemen. While their passing attack isn’t as threatening, quarterback A.J. McCarron limits turnovers and can make plays when needed. The Tide defense has a slew of potential NFL players on the roster. They have one of the best defensive secondaries in the nation and a playmaker in linebacker Donta Hightower. Look for him to stop plenty plays of LSU’s rushing attack.
The LSU Tigers also have a formidable defense that will look to shut down Richardson and make McCarron win the game. Defensive lineman such as Barkevious Mingo will look to stop the run and rush McCarron into making critical mistakes. That rush will force McCarron to pass the ball to receivers covered by cornerback Tyrann Mathieu, possibly the best player in the nation. Only a sophomore, he has the LSU record for forced fumbles and makes great plays on the ball. Cornerback Morris Claiborne will be on the other side of the field. While Mathieu receives much more praise, many believe Claiborne is the better of the two. LSU has a great offensive rushing attack that is led by running back Spencer Ware. He is a tough runner and can catch the ball out of the backfield. LSU has much more experience at the quarterback position than Bama. QBs Jarrett Lee and Jordan Jefferson split time at the position and do so very effectively. Both are seniors with considerable experience playing in big games. Lee has become a more accurate passer this season and Jefferson’s speed provides an adequate running threat. They get the ball to playmaking wide receivers such as Rueben Randle and Russell Shepard.
Prediction: While I expect the game to be an all time classic defensive battle, I’ve gotta go with LSU on this one. I just think that the inexperience at quarterback is going to hurt Alabama. McCarron has played well this season but he hasn’t seen a defense like LSU’s. That being said, LSU’s quarterbacks must limit mistakes as they have done thus far this season. Alabama’s defense is strong enough to turn the game around at a moment’s notice. LSU by a score of 20-14.