- No. 2 Alabama has opened as 6-point favorites over No. 1 LSU in Week 11
- Crimson Tide QB Tua Tagovailoa (ankle) is questionable to play
- Read below to see how this line will shift heading into Week 11
No. 2 Alabama has opened as 6-point favorites over No. 1 LSU in the NCAAF Week 11 odds. Crimson Tide starting QB Tua Tagovailoa is being labeled a game-time decision after he injured his ankle in Week 8.
How will Tagovailoa’s injury impact the line movement and how should you bet?
Alabama vs LSU Odds
|No. 1 LSU||+6.0 (-110)|
|No. 2 Alabama||-6.0 (-110)|
Odds from Nov. 3.
Alabama Opens as 6-Point Favorite
Despite being the lower ranked team, No. 2 Alabama has opened as six-point favorites over No. 1 LSU in Week 11. Both teams are 8-0 on the season and coming off bye weeks.
LSU has already beat three ranked teams this season in Texas, Florida and Auburn, while Alabama has faced an easier schedule and only had to beat one ranked team in Texas A&M.
Strength of Schedule for all undefeated teams….
Appy St- 131st
— Jeremiah (@SYRmotsag) October 27, 2019
The Crimson Tide are favored in this game due to their home-field advantage, slight defensive edge and history with LSU.
Alabama ranks 19th in the nation in total defense, while LSU ranks 24th. Alabama also has a nation-leading plus-13 turnover margin this season, while LSU ranks outside the top-30 with a plus-4 margin.
The Crimson Tide have beat the Tigers eight straight times, including a 29-0 victory in Baton Rouge last season. Alabama’s top three players Tagovailoa, WR Jerry Jeudy and RB Najee Harris all played important roles in that victory, while the defense shut down LSU QB Joe Burrow.
Tua Tagovailoa Nursing Ankle Injury
The Crimson Tide would likely be favored by more in this game if star QB Tua Tagovailoa didn’t suffer an ankle injury in Week 8 against Tennessee. The fact Alabama is even favored at all in this game indicates oddsmakers expect Tagovailoa to play against LSU.
Tagovailoa underwent a tightrope procedure on his right ankle after the Tennessee game and didn’t play in Week 9 against Arkansas. The latest update from coach Nick Saban is that Tagovailoa will be a game-time decision for LSU.
Tua Tagovailoa will return for practice on Wednesday, yet Nick Saban is not sure about his return for Alabama's matchup against No. 1 LSU. https://t.co/roXxG7z8up
— ESPN College Football (@ESPNCFB) October 29, 2019
Tagovailoa underwent the same procedure on his other ankle last season and returned 28 days later to face Oklahoma in the CFP semifinal. His return this season would be just 20 days removed from the surgery.
Oddsmakers have likely taken into consideration Tagovailoa’s great performance against the Sooners last season. Despite telling media he was only at around 80% for the CFP semifinal, Tagovailoa still went off for 388 yards and four TDs to lead Alabama to victory.
Joe Burrow Leads Prolific LSU Offense
LSU starting QB Joe Burrow is the favorite in the Heisman odds and leading a Tigers offense that is ranked third in the country. LSU’s offense is averaging 535.9 yards per game and has performed against Florida and Auburn, two teams with better defenses than Alabama.
Burrow has been excellent in every game this season and ranks third in the nation with a 204.5 pass efficiency rating. He’s thrown 32 TD passes with just four interceptions and has been protected well by LSU’s offensive line.
Neither LSU or Alabama have an elite run game, so this matchup is likely going to be won in the air. With how consistently good Burrow and the LSU offense has been, in addition to Tua’s injury, I’m reluctant to bet against the Tigers.
Burrow and LSU have met every challenge they’ve been faced with this season. They’ve faced a much tougher schedule than Alabama and proven they can perform against elite defensive teams like Florida and Auburn.
The Crimson Tide have a history of beating the Tigers, but this LSU team is nothing like LSU teams we have seen in recent years.
Tagovailoa is likely worth 3-5 points to this spread. If it gets announced he’s playing, Alabama could become double-digit favorites. If not, I expect the line to settle around Alabama being a touchdown favorite.
Wait for the line to shift more in Alabama’s favor and bet the Tigers.