Bama doubles up a historic point spread and shuts out LSU in Death Valley

Fourth quarter


Mac Jones takes the final knee. Alabama doubled up the 14.5-point spread and shut out LSU. Yes, that was a stupid big spread for a 7-1 home underdog, but Vegas always knows. Alabama 29, LSU 0.


Burrow is intercepted by Wilson, and that’s going to be your ballgame. Alabama 29, LSU 0.


Tagovailoa has his first fourth quarter appearance, and it results in an Alabama drive that goes for eight plays, 80 yards, and eats up five minutes of game time. And they made the extra point! Alabama 29, LSU 0.

Proof of fourth quarter Tua:


LSU gets to Alabama’s 26-yard line, and is then immediately met with an eight-yard sack of Burrow. Burrow makes up for it with a run of 10 yards to the Tide’s 24.

On third-and-seven, Burrow fired a pass into Dee Anderson, setting up the Tigers at Alabama’s 14. But Alabama’s defense stepped up, and forced LSU to settle for a field goal, which they missed. Alabama 22, LSU 0.

Third quarter


Alabama’s drive starts off nice with a 21-yard run by Harris, but they’re forced to punt. We might get our Tagovailoa 4th quarter after all.

The LSU faithful aren’t amused.

Alabama 22, LSU 0.


LSU gets a spark with a 62-yard kickoff return to the Alabama 40, but aren’t able to capitalize. Another drive, another punt, and Alabama will start with the football on their own 11. Alabama 22, LSU 0.


Tagovailoa’s knee was fine enough to peel off for a 44-yard touchdown run.

However, he was gimpy coming off the field, and took a trip to the injury tent before coming back out. Either way, after a blocked extra point, it’s Alabama 22, LSU 0.


LSU has eight drives tonight, and eight punts. Alabama 16, LSU 0.


LSU gets a stop! They stay in the game by forcing an Alabama punt, after it looked like they were doomed to give up another score.

But uh….

Alabama 16, LSU 0.


LSU still isn’t able to find a groove on offense, and has yet another three-and-out. Good news is, Devin White is back.

Alabama starts their drive off fast with a Tagovailoa pass to Jeudy for 30 yards. After a short run by Harris, they’re already in LSU territory. Alabama 16, LSU 0.

Second quarter


After LSU doesn’t get the job done on offense, Alabama makes sure they get to the locker room without injuring Tagovailoa. Seems smart. Alabama 16, LSU 0.


Tagovailoa hits Jerry Jeudy for a 29-yard strike to LSU’s 25-yard line. Tagovailoa then hits Irv Smith Jr. for the 25-yard touchdown for his second touchdown of the night.

And the extra point is good this time. Alabama 16, LSU 0.


The drive doesn’t go well for LSU. After a four-yard run by Edwards-Helaire, Burrow is sacked for a seven-yard loss to the goal line.

Edwards-Helaire gives them breathing room with another four-yard run. LSU then manages to get the punt off, and Alabama starts at their own 45-yard line and a timeout. Alabama 9, LSU 0.


Tua Tagovailoa has thrown his first interception during the 2018 season. Maybe he isn’t perfect after all.

And now LSU gets the ball with three timeouts. Alabama 9, LSU 0.


LSU converts on a pair of third downs on the ensuing drive, but Alabama gets them into a third-and-14 they can’t make good on. Alabama’s getting the football back with two timeouts. Alabama 9, LSU 0.


LSU holds Alabama to a field goal on a drive that went 15 plays, 75 yards, and over seven minutes of game time. Joseph Bulovas converts on the 23-yarder. Alabama 9, LSU 0.


Alabama’s moving the football, mostly through Damien Harris to start the drive. Harris had a few runs totaling 33 yards along with a Tagovailoa 10-yard run. After a completion to Jeudy, the Tide have a first down to the LSU 25.

A near-interception by LSU linebacker Michael Divinity Jr. forces a third-and-seven, and Alabama nearly gets the first down on a Tagovailoa laser to Josh Jacobs for six yards.

On fourth-and-one, Jacobs is in for the wildcat formation, and gets the first down to LSU’s 12. Alabama 6, LSU 0.


LSU can’t convert on a third-and-two, and punt back to Bama. The ball rolls into the end zone for a touchback, and Alabama starts on offense from the 25-yard line. Alabama 6, LSU 0.

First quarter


LSU almost goes three-and-out via third-and-11 incompletion, but is saved by a defensive pass interference by Alabama’s Saivion Smith.

Burrow then finds Justin Jefferson for 18 yards to the 50-yard line. They quickly run another play and go for a deep ball, but Patrick Surtain Jr. (who considered LSU) was able to break up the pass.

LSU runs a short pass to Clyde Edwards-Helaire, and that’s the quarter. Alabama 6, LSU 0.


Hey, we’ve got another really nice catch, this time from freshman Bama wideout Jaylen Waddle for 28 yards to Alabama’s 48-yard line:

That was a third-and-15 conversion, but Bama wouldn’t be able to convert on their next third down situation, and would punt back to LSU. Alabama 6, LSU 0.


LSU still doesn’t have answers for the Alabama defense. Burrow is sacked by Quinnen Williams for five yards on first down, and the Tigers never recover. Alabama starts with the football on their own 25-yard line, after bobbling the punt. Alabama 6, LSU 0.


The Tide strike first. On LSU’s 15-yard line, Tagovailoa finds Ruggs for the touchdown.

On the play, LSU’s Grant Delpit is called for targeting.

It’s reviewed by officials, and reversed. It’s probably for the best, because we may have had a riot if the Tigers lost another player to targeting. The Tigers are playing without Devin White, who was called for targeting late in their game two weeks ago against Mississippi State.

Oh, and Alabama missed the extra point. Alabama 6, LSU, 0.


Henry Ruggs has the catch of the game so far with this 14-yard one-handed snag:

Odell Beckham Jr. is at the game, so it’s going to take a lot to impress everybody in the building. Alabama 0, LSU 0.


LSU’s drive doesn’t last nearly as long as Alabama’s, and they punt after going 10 yards in five plays, eating up two minutes and 12 seconds of game time. Alabama 0, LSU 0.


Mack Wilson has the Benny Snell mouthpiece with the fan. Much more flashy than simply the mouthpiece with the teeth, imo.


Alabama is called for a false start when Mac Jones is in for Tagovailoa. Tagovailoa then comes back into the game, but has to go out because Jones technically didn’t play a down.

I don’t make or enforce the rules.

Alabama is forced to punt on a fourth-and-30, and gets a touchback. Considering Alabama has averaged under two minutes to score per opening scoring drive this season. Alabama 0, LSU 0.


Tagovailoa is injured on a third-and-18, but appears OK. Bama was called for false start, nobody heard the whistle, and LSU defenders swarmed on Tagovailoa, who remained down for a while before jogging off the field under his own power. Alabama 0, LSU, 0.


LSU turns an Alabama third-and-10 into a third-and-five from the LSU 24 after a substitution infraction. Tagovailoa then finds Irv Smith Jr. for 10 yards to the LSU 14.

Jerry Jeudy helps them out with an eight-yard loss on the next play. Alabama 0, LSU 0.


Alabama gets a first down on the very first play of the game, and LSU has an injury to John Battle, who walks off the field under his own power. Alabama 0, LSU 0.

Alabama is facing the No. 3 team in the nation Saturday. On the road. In one of college football’s most hostile environments.

And is still favored by two touchdowns.

The Crimson Tide have leveled up from their typically-great ways to produce a historically dominant team in 2018. The leap from great to elite has been spurred by Tua Tagavailoa’s emergence as a Heisman Trophy frontrunner. The second-year quarterback hasn’t played much due to Alabama’s streak of blowout wins, but he’s been electric on the field; 25 passing touchdowns, a 70.4% completion rate, and — holy crap — zero interceptions.

But if any team can put an end to the Tide’s run, it’s LSU. The Tigers have faced a murderer’s row of competition early in 2018, knocking off three top-10 teams en route to a 7-1 record. That’s left Ed Orgeron’s team as the only program with a realistic shot of stopping Bama’s march to the SEC West title — but as a 15-point underdog, a win Saturday would be the biggest accomplishment of Orgeron’s career and LSU’s biggest victory since earning the 2007 national title.

The S&P+ ratings unsurprisingly see Bama as the nation’s top team. The numbers aren’t as favorable for LSU, who comes in 13th. Maybe that’s thanks to the devaluation of wins over former top-10 teams Miami and Auburn, who now kinda suck. Or maybe it’s because numbers can’t quantify the Cajun rage that motivates the Tigers beyond their means and leads to big-time wins on the Bayou.

Still, it’s Bama, who typically beat LSU, but rarely by a shocking amount. Tide by 11.

  • Time: 8 p.m. ET
  • Location: Tiger Stadium, Baton Rouge, LA
  • TV: CBS
  • Streaming: SEC on CBS, fuboTV
  • Odds: Alabama is favored by 15 points.

I think we’ll be able to slow them down on the ground. We’re 21st in the country stopping the run according to S&P. We’ve also held them to way under their per game averages the last two years on the ground. I’m comfortable with that.

Where things get dicey is in their passing attack because of how good Tua is. He’s able to go through progressions, deliver accurate balls down the field and take the checkdowns when he needs to. I was blown away watching the film. I knew the numbers stood out. But the film makes it all the more impressive.

Is Joe Burrow’s inexperience against Alabama a good trait to have?

Hear me out. Alabama isn’t just a team; it’s a specter that hangs over the college football season, a demoralizing force that razes your village and salts the earth behind it.

Only Burrow only kinda knows that, because he’s never played the Tide before. So he’s going to have a little more confidence, a little more swagger than, say, a player who only managed 10 points against Alabama in 2017. Or got shut out in 2016. The first-year starter has plenty of swagger coming into the biggest game of his football career. The question is how much he’ll have coming out of it.

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