LSU won't be repeating as national champion. Lopsided losses to Florida and Georgia sealed that deal.
The Tigers do have one shot to affect the title race in a game that could help their fans forget all about those ugly outings against the Gators and Dogs.
Former LSU coach Nick Saban brings his top-ranked Alabama team to Death Valley. In Saban's first game in Baton Rouge as Alabama coach, the Crimson Tide can clinch the SEC West with a victory and stay on course for a shot at the national championship.
Forget the fact that LSU stays in the SEC West race with a win. Even with a loss, the Tide would leave Louisiana with a one-game lead on the Tigers and only home games against Mississippi State and Auburn to go.
This is about revenge for many Tigers fans who felt betrayed when Saban left town after the 2004 season for the Miami Dolphins.
Saban led LSU to a BCS national title in 2003 and laid the foundation for the team that coach Les Miles led to another championship last season.
LSU. His Dolphins played the New Orleans Saints there after Hurricane Katrina damaged the Superdome in 2005. Saban received a mixed welcome for that game. Some boos. Some cheers.
Saturday's reception is not likely to be so polite.
Also rooting against Saban will be Penn State. The third-ranked Nittany Lions have their own business to take care of in Iowa to remain undefeated.
But Joe Paterno's crew needs the Tide or No. 2 Texas Tech to lose to grab one of the coveted top-two spots in the BCS standings.
The picks:
Thursday
No. 11 TCU (minus 2 1/2) at No. 10 Utah
BCS Buster elimination game ... TCU 24-20.
No. 23 Maryland (plus 3 1/2) at Virginia Tech
Are there any ACC games without conference title implications? ... VIRGINIA TECH 24-17.
Saturday, Nov. 8
No. 1 Alabama (minus 3 1/2) at No. 15 LSU
Tigers have won five straight against 'Bama ... ALABAMA 28-24.
No. 8 Oklahoma State (plus 3) at No. 2 Texas Tech
Another crazy night on the plains ... OKLAHOMA STATE 37-34.
No. 3 Penn State (plus 7 1/2) at Iowa
Biggest stumbling block between JoePa and unbeaten regular season ... PENN ST. 31-17.
No. 4 Florida (minus 24) at Vanderbilt
Remember when Commodores were feel good story of season? ... FLORIDA 47-10.
Baylor (plus 26) at No. 5 Texas
on schedule ... TEXAS 48-24.
M
Who cares about a shaky defense when Sooners score point a minute? ... OKLAHOMA 55-35.
No. 21 California (plus 19) at No. 7 Southern California
Trojans need to keep piling up blowouts ... USC 31-10.
Utah State (plus 32) at No. 9 Boise State
Broncos 50-2 in WAC since 2002 ... BOISE STATE 47-7.
No. 12 Ohio State (minus 11) at Northwestern
Buckeyes' victories also help USC and Penn State ... OHIO STATE 28-14.
Kansas State (plus 26) at No. 13 Missouri
Tigers' Jeremy Maclin had 360 all-purpose yards vs. K-State last year ... MISSOURI 54-24.
No. 14 Georgia (minus 10) at Kentucky
Season of unmet expectations for Bulldogs ... GEORGIA 28-10.
San Diego State (plus 36 1/2) at No. 17 BYU
No late-game drama this week for Cougars ... BYU 55-14.
Purdue (plus 10) at No. 18 Michigan State
Spartans still in Rose Bowl running ... MICHIGAN STATE 37-24.
No. 22 Georgia Tech (plus 4 1/2) at No. 19 North Carolina
Yellow Jackets have won nine of last 10 meetings ... GEORGIA TECH 27-24.
Cincinnati (plus 7 1/2) at No. 20 West Virginia
Mountaineers come back strong after slow start ... WEST VIRGINIA 34-24.
Clemson (plus 6) at No. 24 Florida State
Bowden Bowl called off ... FLORIDA STATE 27-17.
isville (plus 6) at No. 25 Pittsburgh
Pitt's LeSean McCoy has five straight 100-yard games ... PITT 28-14.
---
Last week: 15-3 (straight); 8-10 (vs. points).
Season: 146-42 (straight); 90-83 (vs. points).

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