SEC football is most certainly happening in Tuscaloosa, as two very good offenses have been bested by excellent defenses early Saturday night.
Alabama showed its strength on the line early, with the big men up front opening up lanes for T.J. Yeldon. When you give Yeldon lanes, he will take advantage, and he opened the game with runs of 13 and eight yards on the first two plays. The Tide offense continued to move on the next play, as A.J. McCarron found Kevin Norwood for an eight-yard gain, but LSU's defense stepped up and forced a punt.
LSU's next drive started with promise and ended with heartbreak. The Tigers moved down the field thanks to strong running from Jeremy Hill, and Zach Mettenberger took advantage with a beautiful play-action pass to Jarvis Landry, taking LSU into Alabama territory.
Terrence Magee brought the Tigers to the Tide's eight-yard line on rushes of 13, 10 and five yards, and J.C. Copeland received the carry and looked free for the end zone. Alabama linebacker Tana Patrick disagreed, stripping the ball and forcing a turnover in an absolutely huge play.
Alabama punted the ball on their next possession, and LSU gave the ball away on a miscommunication between the center and quarterback. Mettenberger stepped forward to give instructions to the offensive line, and junior center Elliott Porter mistook that as a call for the ball on the silent snap. The ball bounced off the quarterback's chest, and Alabama recovered in Tiger territory.
The Tide were unable to get much going on the ensuing drive, but Cade Foster's 43-yard field goal gave them a 3-0 lead.
LSU got a big return from Odell Beckham on the kickoff, giving them possession at their own 43. The Tigers moved down the field quickly, thanks especially to a 17-yard completion from Mettenberger to Beckham, and are near the goal line with the quarter over.
The result of the opening quarter has to be a bit disappointing for Alabama, as it managed to force two turnovers but could only turn those into three points.