College Football Picks:Alabama-Birmingham vs. LSU Tigers

Willie Bee

Friday, September 6, 2013 1:55 PM UTC

Friday, Sep. 6, 2013 1:55 PM UTC

LSU comes off a big win over TCU and now gets to play in front of the home fans against Alabama-Birmingham.  SBR has a preview and free pick for the mismatch.

Oh, to be in Baton Rouge now that the college football betting season is underway.

There are some huge games this weekend, matchups that will most definitely play at least some part in determining the eventual two crews who meet in the BCS Championship. Games like Florida at Miami, the South Carolina Gamecocks and Georgia Bulldogs in Athens, and the Fighting Irish on the road to meet the Wolverines. But send me to Bayou Country, please, for the not so crucial contest between the LSU Tigers and UAB Blazers. 

Why on earth would anyone want to go to this mismatch with such a huge College Football odds spread, you ask? Well, as my good friend DeWayne Boudreaux would say, "Let me told you."

The short answer is to pass a good time with those wild, crazy and good folks down in the southern part of the state. And what better way to enjoy the trip than when the home fans are guaranteed to be happy, happy, happy? Yes, I said guaranteed, double throw-down lock, I'll kiss your ass on the corner of Tin Alley and University Boulevard in Birmingham plus give you 30 minutes to draw a crowd if the Blazers pull off the upset. 

You'll have to read on to find out if I think the LSU Tigers will cover the monster number, which is 34.5 points to back Louisiana State after opening a half higher. Another sports betting option for Saturday night's (7 PM ET) contest at Tiger Stadium is 61.5 for a scoreboard hurdle, up a point from the starting bell on the Week 2 college football odds board. 


Are Tigers In For Letdown After Beating TCU?

No. I expected Les Miles and his bunch to beat Texas Christian last week, but what I didn't expect was for the game to soar way past what was a fairly low total by college football standards. Heck, the number moved south from when I bet it at 50, and the 37-27 final score still had plenty to spare to get across that line.

What I really expected happened for the most part. LSU won the game with a ball-hogging ground attack behind Terrence Magee, Alfred Blue and Kenny Hilliard that wore on Horned Frog defenders while Zach Mettenberger was just efficient enough to keep some critical drives going. The Tigers failed to really stretch the field with deep routes, something I expect will change at some point on Saturday. 

Don't put all of TCU's 27 points on the Louisiana State defense. Fourteen of those came off a kickoff return and Blue fumble inside the Tigers' 10-yard-line, and both Horned Frog QBs -- Casey Pachall and Trevone Boykin -- were constantly taken out of their comfort zone, to put it mildly in some cases. 

Can Alabama-Birmingham Repeat Upset In Baton Rouge?

No. Weren't you listening to what I said earlier? 

UAB's upset in 2000 was indeed a shocker, coming in just the Blazers' fifth season at the Division 1-A level. It was also very early in Nick Saban's first year at LSU with the Tigers coming off a loss to Auburn and looking ahead to a game against Tennessee. It was, quite possibly, the ugliest game in LSU history with Josh Booty getting picked four times to go with five fumbles by the Tigers, three of those lost. LSU finally got things together that season to finish 8-4 and beat Georgia Tech in the Peach Bowl, since renamed for that homophobic fried chicken on a biscuit outfit that tricked a lot of ignorant followers of Mike Huckabee in the Summer of 2012. But I digress. 

This is a far different LSU team, and it's UAB who is working under a head coach who is only in his second season and trying to turn around a program that hasn't had a winning season since 2004. Garrick McGee, a former offensive coordinator at Arkansas, is also trying to get his team back up after blowing a 2-TD lead at Troy last week before losing in overtime, 34-31. The Blazers showed plenty of life on offense as Austin Brown threw for more than 300 yards and three touchdowns, but the Blazers were riddled on defense with the Trojans churning out nearly 500 yards on the evening.

The Tigers won't get caught looking ahead to next least, they shouldn't. After beating the Horned Frogs, Miles has two glorified scrimmages against UAB this Saturday and Kent State in Week 3. Just how long Miles keeps his foot on the gas will determine whether or not the Tigers get the cover, and I think he'll keep it on long enough. LSU takes it, 48-10. 

My free pick: LSU -34.5 (-110) at Bet365
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