South Carolina vs. LSU: Ugly Game Affirms Alabama's SEC Dominance

Mike Hoag@MikeHoagJrCorrespondent IIOctober 13, 2012

BATON ROUGE, LA - OCTOBER 13:  Head coach Les Miles of the LSU Tigers celebrates a 23-21 win against the South Carolina Gamecocks at Tiger Stadium on October 13, 2012 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

LSU won a huge matchup against the South Carolina Gamecocks in Death Valley on Saturday night. The LSU Tigers' 23-21 victory is meaningless, though, in the grand scheme of the SEC championship discussion.

While the Tigers’ win over the Gamecocks was huge for their school’s program, giving it new life after a disappointing loss to the Florida Gators, the only thing it did was reaffirm the fact that the Alabama Crimson Tide are the lone superpower in the SEC this season.

Both teams played staunch defense, but both teams were sloppy offensively until the end of the game when the defenses started to wear down.

If South Carolina could have decisively knocked off LSU, there may have been hope for a challenging SEC Championship game for the Crimson Tide. However, their performance in Death Valley has left much to be desired and brought about questions as to whether they’re on the same level as the Tide.

It doesn’t look like they, or anyone, are as complete of a team as 'Bama. Not only can they play stifling defense that will hamper teams like LSU and South Carolina, but they have an offensive unit that is capable of wearing down teams and making them break a lot quicker than it took LSU Saturday night.

It isn’t so much that LSU and South Carolina are bad programs this year. It’s just that Alabama’s well-rounded team is that much better.

LSU may be able to keep things close in their November 3 matchup with the No. 1-ranked Crimson Tide, but that won’t last long as Nick Saban’s team will be able to load the box and easily rattle Zach Mettenberger behind center.

If the tide can take away the run, and their imposing defensive front should be able to, there is no way Mettenberger is going to be able to move the ball himself and win the game passing.

Whether it’s South Carolina or Florida in the SEC Championship game, Alabama should be fine, because neither of those teams is capable of playing defense strong enough to keep things close.

The more and more these teams play, the more and more it’s becoming apparent that no one will come close to beating Alabama.