Alabama may have plenty of concerns with its strength of schedule argument, but the Crimson Tide did play arguably the nation’s best team in the country just earlier this month. But according to Alabama head coach Nick Saban, the best is still to come for the Crimson Tide this weekend when Alabama faces rival Auburn in the latest iteration of the Iron Bowl. As coaches tend to do, Saban was hyping up the strength and quality of his upcoming opponent, although he may have gone just a tad too far with his praise of his upcoming opponent.
Sure, a throwaway line form a coach leading up to the next game may be just that, a throwaway line. It doesn’t really require any real in-depth analysis to prove or disprove the meaning behind the words. Saban is simply just keeping the focus for his team on the task at hand. Alabama needs to beat Auburn to remain in contention for the College Football Playoff, as an 11-1 Alabama will most certainly remain in the mix even if it may need just a little bit of help from outside the SEC (and maybe some help within the SEC in the SEC Championship Game) to keep its perfect streak of playoff appearances going.
… Auburn is clearly not the best team Alabama has faced this season. Second best, sure. But best? Nope. That would be the other Tigers residing in the SEC West, the ones from Baton Rouge.
LSU is the No. 1 team in the College Football Playoff (although we will see Tuesday night if they remain No. 1 in the next-to-last batch of playoff rankings for the season before the ultimate decisions are made). LSU not only dispatched of Auburn in late October, 23-20, but traveled to Tuscaloosa and left town with a 46-41 victory to take a firm grip on the SEC West race before officially clinching the division crown this past weekend.