Saturday, Nov. 9 at 8 p.m. ET
It's not quite the "Game of the Century" from two years ago, but LSU's visit to Alabama has enormous ramifications in the SEC West and BCS National Championship races. Alabama can't afford a loss and lose that benefit of the doubt given the landscape around the rest of college football this season, and LSU needs to win out and get help to make it to Atlanta.
Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban is not sleeping on LSU's offense.
"This is by far, to me, the most explosive, most talented offensive team that we've faced all year long," Saban said in a video released by Alabama on Monday.
Texas A&M and Johnny Manziel probably vehemently object.
After a hot start, LSU's offense has been remarkably average of late. Quarterback Zach Mettenberger has thrown four touchdowns and five interceptions over his last two games and gets his biggest test of the season this week against an Alabama team that boasts the best pass defense in the SEC (179 yards per game).
But Alabama's secondary hasn't been tested by potent passing attacks this season, so that's a bit deceiving. Still though, Alabama will generate pressure and force Mettenberger to make quick decisions, which will benefit the Tide secondary.
Both coaches will play this one close to the vest for a few quarters like prize fighters in a heavyweight match, and the first one to take a risk will probably be the one that goes home with a loss. That'll be LSU head coach Les Miles.
Alabama will run and hide late after three quarters of pounding the rock opens up big plays off play-action in the fourth quarter.
Prediction: Alabama 27 - LSU 14