Is Saturday’s LSU-vs.-Alabama battle in the SEC the real national championship game, just two months early? Oddsmakers say yes, posting odds this week that favor the winner of the Tigers-Crimson Tide game also winning the BCS title in January.
"Whoever wins is a -200 fave to finish off the season at No. 1, according to Bodog’s line anyway," said Mike Pickett of OddsShark.com. "The SEC has won five straight national crowns and with these teams at 1-2 in the rankings, it’s hard to imagine any other conference pushing into the discussion."
While it’s possible for Saturday’s loser to climb back to the top and earn a spot in the BCS title game, oddsmakers don’t believe that will happen and posted underdog odds based on that scenario.
"Stanford and Oklahoma State are viable candidates as undefeated teams. So is Oklahoma despite that awful loss last weekend, and even Boise State will get votes if it runs the table again," said Pickett.
The line on ‘will LSU and Alabama play again the BCS title game’ is +200, or roughly 2/1 odds for the ‘no’ response. The game itself presents plenty of intrigue and a home line of -4.5 favoring Alabama. And, in digging into the stats, the Tide lead LSU in all 10 key categories outlined in the Odds Shark Smart Chart.
Despite that, about 61 percent of the voting public at OddsShark.com is betting the underdog Tigers, perhaps owing in part to the 5-2 SU run since 1997 for LSU at Alabama.
However, the Tide is a money-making 8-1 ATS in their past 9 games as a favorite and LSU has lost six of their past nine games SU as an underdog. Alabama is also 11-3 ATS in their past 14 home games. LSU is 6-2-1 ATS in nine recent road games and 3-0 ATS in 2011.
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