LSU takes on Alabama in a marquee SEC showdown with major College Football Playoff implications. Alabama is a six-point favorite in the latest spread and the over-under is set at 64, per OddsShark.
The Tigers have performed well against the spread going 5-2-1 so far this season, while the Crimson Tide have gone just 4-4. The big question heading into the game is the status of Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. He is expected to play barring a major setback.
“I think he’s going to be fine,” ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit told the Montgomery Advertiser. “I’ve talked to people down there and unless there’s some kind of setback within the game, I expect him to be very capable of being the Tua we expect.”
This Is LSU’s Chance to Beat Bama
Alabama has won eight straight matchups against LSU in the series. If ever there was a year where LSU had a chance to end the streak it is this season. The Tigers finally made good on their promise to revamp the offense, and it is now one of the most explosive units in the country.
Joe Burrow has turned himself into a top NFL prospect and has multiple weapons at his disposal. Alabama head coach Nick Saban discussed what has made the LSU quarterback so successful.
“[Burrow] does a great job. He understands exactly what they’re doing,” Saban said, per USA Today. “Because people are spread out, it makes it a little bit easier to see, the defense has to declare itself so he knows exactly what you’re in, where to go with the ball. He gets rid of it quickly.”
All that to say, Bama is still Bama. The Crimson Tide have arguably the best receiving group in the country with Jerry Jeudy, Henry Ruggs and DeVonta Smith. Assuming Tagovailoa is close to full strength, Alabama’s offense poses just as many problems for LSU. Neither team’s defense is playing at the level we have come to expect from both teams, but both are still among the top units in the country.
LSU vs. Alabama Prediction: Tigers Upset Crimson Tide
ESPN’S Bill Connelly’s SP+ projections side with the Crimson Tide over the Tigers. The computer gives Alabama a 66 percent win probability and projects a 34-27 Crimson Tide victory. The OddsShark computer projects a higher scoring game with Alabama notching a 42.0-40.6 victory over LSU.
Despite the projections, this looks like the year where LSU finally ends up on top. This version of LSU has what it takes to beat Alabama thanks to a high-powered offense and solid defense. Burrow is playing as well as any quarterback in the country.
Tagovailoa is just a few weeks away from having surgery on his ankle. Even if he is cleared to play as expected, this is going to be a physical game where every hit he takes will put him at risk.
LSU enters this game tested with wins over Texas, Florida and Auburn. The Tigers have looked like the best team in the country so far this season, and LSU is going to solidify that on Saturday in Tuscaloosa.
Heavy’s Prediction: LSU 31 Alabama 27. LSU Covers +6 Spread. Under on the Point Total.