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Hobbs: Don't count the Tigers, Miles out

Last Modified: Friday, November 02, 2012 12:02 AM

By Scooter Hobbs / American Press

Oh, for those good, ol’ carefree days of yore when LSU-Alabama was merely No. 1 vs. No. 2, the Game/Rematch of the Century, and a national championship semifinal/final.

This thing coming up Saturday in Tiger Stadium is something entirely different.

Frankly, I haven’t figured it out yet.

LSU, it seems, is not just playing the No. 1 team in the country. That’s old hat for the Mad Hatter. But Alabama seems to have morphed into something way beyond that.

You need new high-powered adjectives.

No, it seems like the Tigers are playing this mythical beast that devours everything in its path, does it without malice and very little emotion, just quietly and efficiently while fighting nothing more threatening than boredom with its chores.

This is crazy.

LSU has some pretty good players, too, and a good thing for the Tigers. But Bama and its diabolical leader, Nick Saban, is the cold, methodical assassin who is going to get you no matter what preventative steps you take.

It’s not a football game anymore, it’s a James Bond movie. The world as we know it (college football) is at stake and teetering in the balance.

Alabama isn’t a football team, it’s that dastardly machine that eats junked automobiles, slowly grinding and gnawing and squeezing them into little squares of recyclable metal.

There is panic in the streets and most of the bayous.

How did things get so out of whack in one short year?

Now, it turns out somebody seems to think LSU has a chance or the school wouldn’t have had to issue (at last count) 920 media credentials from all corners of the nation. That’s beyond the borders.

But, in Louisiana, talking to LSU fans you get the sense they’re all waiting on some supernatural catastrophe to hit the state’s flagship football team.

And disasters attract overkill media coverage, too.

When Alabama lands in Baton Rouge on Friday, I expect for all TV channels to break in with one of those government-sponsored, hunker-down news conferences, complete with law enforcement standing somberly in the background and somebody frantically doing the sign language to translate the governor’s run-for-your-lives message of impending doom.

If you haven’t left by now, it’s probably too late to escape Saban’s “process.” If you see the Tide coming, write your Social Security number and next of kin on your leg and … wait a minute.

Folks, it’s just a football team — a very good one, but just a football team.

It’s not a meteor about to crash onto Tiger Stadium.

Yet South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier, who should know better, got so caught up in the hoopla the other day that he was spouting off about how Alabama could beat two or three NFL teams.

It couldn’t, but that’s not the point.

Spurrier sounded serious, not just being typically smart-alecky. Former Auburn coach Pat Dye grumbled something about it being the best football team he’s ever seen by far. Others have sent preemptive condolences to LSU as well.

Based on what I’m hearing this week from LSU fans — normally a cocky lot themselves — they’re just hoping to get out of it alive with a little pride still intact while begging the Tide to spare the good silver and not ransack the place beyond repair.

Meanwhile, in Alabama there is talk, purely as a scientific experiment, of taking a random Tide fan and letting him mention the name “Nick Saban” in the same breath and sentence with “Bear Bryant,” under the once-unthinkable theory that the fan might not be zapped dead on the spot by lightning.

No wonder Saban doesn’t seem overly concerned about Tiger Stadium relative to the dreaded cauldron effect. If this week’s in-state scuttlebutt is any indication, all 92,500 or so will be screaming and fleeing for the exits the minute Alabama Godzilla-tromps out onto the field.

Try not to clog up the evacuation routes. Contraflow can work for all of us. Show some chivalry— women and children first.

(But if you see Shaq Daddy running with the shrieking mob, by all means feel free to panic and fall in behind).

This is the most dangerous, frightening football team ever to come to Tiger Stadium and ... remain calm.

Folks, it’s just a football team — a rather boring one at that.

The general feeling seems to be that Alabama will win — possibly even obliterate —because the Tide is the greatest, best-coached collection talent ever and LSU isn’t going to learn to throw the ball overnight, even with an extra week, at least not against this defense.

If LSU players are listening to their own fans this week, they might as well not show up.

The Tigers’ remote chances, best I can tell, are based on the hopeful notion that, well, it IS Les Miles we’re talking about here, and nuttier and downright weirder things have happened once he starts chowing down on Tiger Stadium’s Bermuda turf.

And LSU might win. Could win. Maybe. Sort of have a chance.

It’s possible. Don’t ask me how. It would probably be something we never thought of.

But, rest assured, it is possible.

Just to be safe, however, batten down the hatches anyway.

•••

Scooter Hobbs covers LSU athletics. Email him at shobbs@americanpress.com

Posted By: Stephanie McCullor On: 1/18/2013

Title: You can't make this stuff up

Witty and clever.....especially the reference to his apostrophe and the moon landing,really enjoy your column! LOL good way to start my day........!

Posted By: Barry Flippo On: 11/2/2012

Title: Funny Stuuf!

Mr. Hobbs sir....that is a really good read! Full disclosure here, I am a Bama fan......I am hoping for a win Saturday but I am not taking it for granted. I have been to Tiger Stadium in the past and I know how difficult it can be to get out of there with a win. I was there for the slog-bowl in '78.......3-0. That was NASTY! I just hope all of the fans can be safe, keep in perspective, and let the chips fall where they may. Bama may win....but LSU might win also. BOTH of our teams are INCREDIBLE representatives for our league! I wish you all the very best.....after Saturday night, of course! Roll Tide!

Posted By: Kenny On: 11/2/2012

Title: Thank you, Mr. Hobbs.

Great article! The usual stories have become a bore. For once this week, I've been entertained by a creative storyline instead of a list of numbers from years past. I'm ready for a good showing from LSU and some evidence that Alabama is the best in the land.

Posted By: Mark Carroll On: 11/2/2012

Title: dont count tigers out

Don't count the Tigers out, man You better count on them winning. Alabama hasn't played any team this year that has the talent of LSU, as long as they're coached right and don't self destruct, Saban will need his boys help to carry this huge loss back to alabama.

Posted By: TexBam On: 11/2/2012

Title: You're Right!

I'm a huge Bama fan and I think they will take care of LSU tomorrow night. But I totally agree the game and it's possible outcome have been way over exposed. While the Tide is a very good football team, so are the Tigers. There are many SEC haters out there, but the SEC family knows siblings can whip other siblings on any given day. Let's keep this thing in perspective and enjoy the day without trying to win a Pulitzer, withoutselling airtime, and without downplaying the talent of the opposition by trolling on message boards. Roll Tide!

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