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Jan. 09, 2012
Jan. 09, 2012

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Jan. 9, 2012

LEADING OFF
Inside: THE WEEK IN SPORTS
BCS CHAMPIONSHIP PREVIEW
  • SI asked three SEC assistant coaches to break down the first LSU-Alabama game and analyze how the rematch will play out. Their conclusions? Another low-scoring affair, with a surprise ending

  • COMPILED BY Gene Menez

    FROM LSU COACH LES MILES'S RECORD IN GAMES DECIDED BY SEVEN POINTS OR FEWER TO HOW MANY THREE-AND-OUTS ALABAMA'S DEFENSE HAS FORCED THIS SEASON, HERE's EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE BCS CHAMPIONSHIP TEAMS

TOM BRADY
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Head-to-Head

FROM LSU COACH LES MILES'S RECORD IN GAMES DECIDED BY SEVEN POINTS OR FEWER TO HOW MANY THREE-AND-OUTS ALABAMA'S DEFENSE HAS FORCED THIS SEASON, HERE's EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE BCS CHAMPIONSHIP TEAMS

COMPILED BY Gene Menez

[LSU]

This is an article from the Jan. 9, 2012 issue

Of the 122 players on the roster, 79 (64.8%) come from Louisiana. Here's where the rest of the team calls home:

Texas (13); Georgia (7); Alabama and Florida (6); Mississippi (4); Tennessee (2); Australia, Maryland, Michigan, Ohio and South Carolina (1)

FRESHMEN 47 SOPHOMORES 38 JUNIORS 13 SENIORS 24

[ALABAMA]

Of the 119 players on the roster, 59 (49.6%) come from Alabama.

Here's where rest of the team calls home:

Georgia (15); Tennessee (9); Florida (8); Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina and Texas (4); Ohio and South Carolina (3); California and Maryland (2); Australia and Virginia (1)

FRESHMEN 39 SOPHOMORES 28 JUNIORS 28 SENIORS 24

OFFENSES

YARDS PER GAME

Alabama 433.4 (30th nationally) LSU 375.3 (75th)

POINTS PER GAME

Alabama 36.0 (16th) LSU 38.5 (12th)

RUSHING YARDS PER GAME

Alabama 219.8 (15th) LSU 215.2 (17th)

PASSING YARDS PER GAME

Alabama 213.6 (72nd) LSU 160.2 (105th)

SACKS ALLOWED

Alabama 15 LSU 14

TURNOVERS LOST

Alabama 12 LSU 8

THIRD-DOWN CONVERSIONS

Alabama 75 of 153 LSU 74 of 158

FOURTH-DOWN CONVERSIONS

Alabama 7 of 11 LSU 4 of 5

RED ZONE SCORES

Alabama 48 of 55 LSU 57 of 61

RED ZONE TOUCHDOWNS

Alabama 32 LSU 44

SCORING BY QUARTERS

Alabama 96 101 130 105 0 432

LSU 82 151 135 129 3 500

DEFENSES

YARDS PER GAME

Alabama 191.3 (1st nationally) LSU 252.1 (2nd)

POINTS PER GAME

Alabama 8.8 (1st) LSU 10.5 (2nd)

RUSHING YARDS PER GAME

Alabama 74.9 (1st) LSU 85.5 (3rd)

PASSING YARDS PER GAME

Alabama 116.3 (1st) LSU 166.6 (9th)

SACKS

Alabama 26 LSU 37

TURNOVERS FORCED

Alabama 18 LSU 30

OPPONENTS' SCORING BY QUARTERS

Alabama 37 20 28 18 3 106

LSU 29 47 33 28 0 137

SPECIAL TEAMS

FIELD GOALS

Alabama 18 of 29 LSU 16 of 18

AVERAGE NET PUNT

Alabama 36.4 yards (62nd) LSU 41.6 yards (3rd)

AVERAGE PUNT RETURN

Alabama 12.2 yards (17th) LSU 13.8 yards (10th)

AVERAGE KICKOFF RETURN

Alabama 23.7 yards (24th) LSU 22.0 yards (53rd)

LSU FACTS

PASSING

Jarrett Lee

104 of 167 (62.3%), 1,306 yards

Jordan Jefferson

50 of 83 (60.2%), 684 yards

RUSHING

Michael Ford

755 yards, 6.1 per carry

Spencer Ware

700 yards, 4.0 per carry

Alfred Blue

539 yards, 6.9 per carry

RECEIVING

Rueben Randle, WR

904 yards, 18.1 per catch

Odell Beckham Jr., WR

437 yards, 12.1 per catch

Russell Shepard, WR

190 yards, 13.6 per catch

18

LSU has 18 fourth-quarter or overtime comeback wins in the last six years.

TACKLES

Tyrann Mathieu, CB 70

Brandon Taylor, SS 67

Eric Reid, FS 65

Ryan Baker, LB 58

Kevin Minter, LB 56

Bennie Logan, DT 51

Michael Brockers, DT 47

Morris Claiborne, CB 46

Sam Montgomery, DE 44

Barkevious Mingo, DE 41

Tharold Simon, CB 40

Others 318

Four running backs have at least seven rushing touchdowns: Kenny Hilliard and Spencer Ware, with eight; and Alfred Blue and Michael Ford with seven.

Coach Les Miles, 58, is 75--17 (.815) in seven seasons at LSU.

Since coming to Baton Rouge, Miles is 5--1 in bowl games and 2--0 in BCS bowls.

His record with the Tigers in games decided by seven points or fewer is 23--8 (.742).

The Tigers have nine touchdowns on either defense or special teams.

Defensive backs have accounted for five touchdowns: Ron Brooks and Tyrann Mathieu (two each) and Morris Claiborne (one).

LSU has won 12 of its 13 games by double digits, and trailed at the end of just four of 52 quarters.

The Tigers are 24--2 since the start of the 2010 season.

LSU has scored 40 or more points nine times this season.

The Tigers are 51--4 in night games under coach Les Miles.

Defensive end Sam Montgomery, who tops the team in sacks (nine) and is second in tackles for loss (13), helps LSU lead the SEC in both categories.

Morris Claiborne and Tyrann Mathieu are the first cornerback teammates to be first-team AP All-Americas.

Freshmen and sophomores take up 12 spots on the defense's two-deep.

Over the last two years, LSU has converted 15 of 17 fourth downs.

The Tigers have won eight games or more for 12 straight years.

The longest rush against the defense this year is 29 yards (by Michael Dyer of Auburn).

LSU'S FIRST-TEAM ALL-AMERICAS

Brad Wing

Punter

Morris Claiborne

Cornerback

Tyrann Mathieu

Cornerback

The offensive line, featuring two seniors, has a combined 139 starts, including 39 from senior center and Rimington Trophy finalist William Vlachos.

Coach Nick Saban, 60, is 49--12 (.803) in five seasons in Tuscaloosa.

At Alabama, Saban is 6--4 when he has extra time to prepare—after byes and in bowl games.

Under Saban, the Tide has held opponents to fewer than 100 rushing yards 41 times.

63

The Tide has been in the AP poll for 63 straight weeks, the nation's longest streak.

Trent Richardson averaged 198.4 yards of total offense in five games against Top 25 teams in 2011.

Richardson has lost one fumble in 614 career touches.

Alabama is making an NCAA-record 59th bowl appearance.

The Tide's senior class has gone 47--6.

Opponents crossed midfield against 'Bama only 39 times in 2011, for an average of 3.3 times per game.

Alabama opponents converted just 25.0% (43 of 172) of their third-down attempts.

Eight Tide players have made an interception this season, led by Dee Milliner, who has three.

The defense surrendered 12 touchdowns, the fewest in the nation.

The Tide D led the FBS in first downs allowed (10.5 per game).

Alabama has six drives of 90 yards or longer (second in the country).

The defense has forced opponents into 73 three-and-outs in 147 possessions this season.

All-America junior Barrett Jones has started nine games at left tackle this year but has also played snaps at left guard, center and right tackle.

ALABAMA'S FIRST-TEAM ALL-AMERICAS

Barrett Jones

Left tackle

Trent Richardson

Running back

Mark Barron

Free safety

Dont'a Hightower

Linebacker

'BAMA FACTS

PASSING

AJ McCarron

196 of 294 (66.7%), 2,400 yards

Phillip Sims

18 of 28 (64.3%), 163 yards

RECEIVING

Marquis Maze, WR

627 yards, 11.2 per catch

Trent Richardson, RB

327 yards, 12.1 per catch

Brad Smelley, TE

317 yards, 11.7 per catch

Darius Hanks, WR

270 yards, 12.9 per catch

RUSHING

Trent Richardson

1,583 yards, 6.0 per carry

Eddie Lacy

631 yards, 7.5 per carry

Jalston Fowler

385 yards, 6.9 per carry

Alabama has won 10 games or more for four straight seasons.

TACKLES

Dont'a Hightower, LB 81

Mark Barron, FS 66

Courtney Upshaw, LB 45

Nico Johnson, LB 43

DeQuan Menzie, CB 37

Robert Lester, SS 36

C.J. Mosley, LB 36

Vinnie Sunseri, FS 31

Damion Square, DL 30

Dre Kirkpatrick, CB 26

DeMarcus Milliner, CB 26

Others 247

PHOTOJOHN BIEVER (BROOKS)PHOTOJOHN BIEVER (FORD)PHOTOJOHN BIEVER (JEFFERSON)PHOTOJOHN BIEVER (MATHIEU)PHOTODAMIAN STROHMEYER (CLAIBORNE)PHOTODAMIAN STROHMEYER (MILES)PHOTODAMIAN STROHMEYER (MONTGOMERY)PHOTODAMIAN STROHMEYER (RANDLE)PHOTOAL TIELEMANS (WARE)Spencer Ware Running backPHOTOAL TIELEMANS (WING)PHOTOBILL FRAKES (TAYLOR)PHOTOGREG NELSON (HILLIARD)TWO PHOTOSCHAD MATTHEW CARLSON (HELMET, 2)PHOTOJOHN BIEVER (BARRON)PHOTOJOHN BIEVER (JONES)PHOTOJOHN BIEVER (LACY)PHOTOJOHN BIEVER (MCCARRON)PHOTOJOHN BIEVER (RICHARDSON ACTION)PHOTODAMIAN STROHMEYER (MAZE)PHOTODAMIAN STROHMEYER (RICHARDSON)PHOTOAL TIELEMANS (SABAN)PHOTOAL TIELEMANS (UPSHAW)PHOTOMARVIN GENTRY/US PRESSWIRE (CHAPMAN)Josh Chapman NosetacklePHOTOMARVIN GENTRY/US PRESSWIRE (VLACHOS)PHOTOKEVIN C. COX/GETTY IMAGES (MILLINER)PHOTOKELLY LAMBERT/US PRESSWIRE (HIGHTOWER)TWO PHOTOS