LSU Tigers @ Alabama Crimson Tide (-3.5, 148.5)
January 19, 2022
7:00pm EST on ESPN2
The most intriguing SEC matchup today takes place when the LSU Tigers visit the Alabama Crimson Tide @ Coleman Coliseum (Tip-off: 7:00pm ET / 4:00pm PT). Alabama (11-6, 2-3 in SEC play) comes in trying to correct a 3-game skid, where all losses were by 6 points or less. LSU (15-2, 3-2 in SEC play) is coming off one of their only 2 losses on the year when they dropped a home game by 7 points to unranked Arkansas on Saturday. Both teams look to correct this as they battle with somewhat opposing styles of play.
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Alabama has had an interesting year thus far, riding from a preseason rank of #14 in the country all the way up to #6 after beating a star-studded 3rd ranked Gonzaga team, back down to an unranked team entering this contest. Coach Nate Oats has a really talented group, especially on the offensive end. They play at a fast pace and most games end up in a shootout. Alabama is 13th in the country averaging 81.8PPG, but is a dismal 310th in the country allowing 74.6PPG on defense. The opposing style of play is found with LSU who ranks 7th in the country in team defense allowing only 57.0PPG and is #1 in the country in opposing FG%. The Alabama offense vs this LSU defense will be fun to watch.
Let’s talk betting lines. With the Crimson Tide on a slide lately, the public is likely to see them favored by 3.5 points and like LSU at surface level with their overall record. However, we find Alabama at a bargain deal at this point in the season. They’ve played an incredibly tough schedule (3rd toughest in the nation)and have proven they can beat anybody on a given night. They are 2-7-1 ATS in their last 10 games where LSU is an astounding 13-4 ATS on the year. Water always finds its level. These opposite trends WILL change. In 27 previous matchups between these two schools, the favorite is 20-6-1 ATS. Alabama is 7-1 at home and plays very well in front of their home crowd. When Alabama is rolling with their guard play, few teams can stop them. LSU turns the ball over 14.5 times/game and we look to see Alabama get out in transition off these turnovers to take advantage before LSU can set up their half-court defense.
Lastly, LSU’s third leading scorer and best distributor (Xaiver Pinson, 10.9PPG, 4.6 APG) is listed as questionable for tonight’s game. He is likely to sit this one out due to an MCL sprain. In the 2 games he’s missed thus far, their offense has averaged 14 points less than what they score on the year. His absence will be a big factor in this matchup. Let’s take advantage of this line.