ESPN BCS analyst Brad Edwards said he would like to get a first-hand glimpse of Saturday’s LSU-Alabama game from inside Tiger Stadium.
He said that probably will only happen if USC is threatening to knock off Oregon, which kicks off an hour before the Tigers and Crimson Tide get going at 7 p.m. Otherwise he’ll be keeping track of both games from the ESPN “College Game Day” radio show set outside Walk-On’s on Burbank Drive.
LSU fans love to cheer the Trojans’ demise, most famously when USC fell to 41-point underdog Stanford, touching off the biggest roar during the Tigers’ dramatic 2007 win over Florida.
But after an upset of the Crimson Tide, Edwards said LSU’s best hope to reach the BCS National Championship Game this season is for an assist or two from USC.
“There’s no doubt USC getting on a hot streak is the best thing that can happen for LSU,” Edwards said. “If (LSU wins out), they need two of the three in front of them to lose.
“USC can take out two of them. That (LSU’s) best-case scenario.”
Even if 7-1 LSU, No. 5 in the BCS standings, can take care of No. 1 Alabama, the Tigers still need two of the other three unbeaten teams in front of them (No. 2 Kansas State, No. 3 Notre Dame, No. 4 Oregon) to lose.
The Trojans face Oregon and Notre Dame at home (the Irish visit Los Angeles on Nov. 24).
Edwards does not see a one-loss Southeastern Conference champion getting past unbeaten Oregon, Kansas State or Notre Dame to reach the BCS title game.
“I don’t see any of those three teams as a fraud,” Edwards said.
As for the LSU-Alabama game, Edwards said he believes the Tigers have a shot.
“LSU has got the athletes to make the plays and force turnovers,” he said. “Nothing is certain. You would think if Alabama does a good job protecting the ball it would be really tough for LSU, but there is no given.”
ESPN Radio’s “College Game Day” show will broadcast from Walk-On’s from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday. The “College Game Day” TV show will broadcast from 8-11 a.m. at the LSU Parade Grounds.
Jones to be guest picker
Olympic hurdler and former LSU All-American Lolo Jones will be the guest picker on the “College Game Day” TV program Saturday.
Jones, who finished fourth in the 100-meter hurdles in London this summer, recently qualified for a shot at making the 2014 U.S. Olympic bobsled team.
LSU’s Bama-bred Tiger
Zach Mettenberger, Connor Neighbors’ roommate, jokingly called the sophomore fullback the “black sheep” of his family on Monday.
It would be easy to make that distinction.
Neighbors brother Wesley, their father Wes and their grandfather Billy Neighbors all played football for Alabama.
Wesley was a defensive back for the Crimson Tide last season. Wes played center from 1983-86. And Billy, who died earlier this year, captained Bear Bryant’s first national championship squad in 1961.
Alabama offered Connor Neighbors (5-foot-10, 223 pounds) the chance to walk on and accept a Bryant scholarship, though he said it would have required him to sit out two seasons of football.
So the Huntsville, Ala., native came to LSU, where he is finally starting to see significant playing time after getting into just five games over the past two seasons.
Neighbors has just one carry for 5 yards (versus South Carolina) but has seen action in every game.
“That’s been very exciting for me, waiting for my name to be called and doing what I need to do to help the team out,” Neighbors said.
As for that “black sheep” line, Neighbors said: “I just chose a different path. I’m glad I came down here. I’ve been through a lot and grown up as a man.”
By the numbers
9 1/2: Point spread by which Alabama is favored over LSU. The last time the Tigers were a bigger underdog at home was when Tennessee was favored by 10 in 2000. LSU won 38-31 in overtime.
$195: Cheapest ticket for LSU-Alabama game available Thursday afternoon on StubHub.com.
.733: The overall career winning percentage for LSU’s Les Miles (110-40) and Alabama’s Nick Saban (149-54-1).
950: The approximate number of credentials LSU expects to approve for this game, likely the most in school history, said LSU spokesman Kent Lowe.
$2,000: Most expensive LSU-Alabama ticket on StubHub.com Thursday.
The Crimson Tide leads the overall series 46-25-5, including a 25-8-2 edge in games played in Baton Rouge.
However, the series is tied 15-15-1 since 1982, with LSU holding a 9-4 advantage since 2000.
The road team has dominated this series the past three decades, holding a 22-8-1 edge overall.