Alabama vs. LSU Kickoff set for 7:30pm CT Broadcast: ESPN
THE GAME: The Alabama Crimson Tide will face the LSU Tigers in the 2012 BCS National Championship Game on Monday, January 9, 2012, at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, La. The Tide will be making its second appearance in the BCS National Championship Game, while the Tigers are making the trip for the third time. Most recently, Alabama defeated Texas, 37-21, in the 2010 contest, while LSU was a 38-24 winner over Ohio State in the 2008 game also played in New Orleans. The game will be televised on ESPN with Brent Musburger on play-by-play, Kirk Herbstreit as the color analyst and Erin Andrews reporting from the sideline. Eli Gold and Phil Savage will handle the radio call on the Crimson Tide Sports Network, with Chris Stewart serving as sideline reporter.
HEAD COACH NICK SABAN: Alabama head coach Nick Saban (Kent State, 1973) is in his fifth season with the Crimson Tide. Named the school's 27th head coach on January 3, 2007, Saban has compiled a 49-12 record (54-12 not including five vacated wins in 2007) at Alabama while leading the Tide to two SEC Western Division championships, one conference title and one national championship. Saban holds a career record of 140-54-1 (145-54-1) as a collegiate head coach, while also serving at Toledo, Michigan State and LSU. Saban won his first national championship as head coach of the LSU Tigers in 2003, guiding the Tigers to a 13-1 record that season. Overall, Saban has coached four conference championship teams (1990 Mid-American, 2001 SEC, 2003 SEC and 2009 SEC) and now his 12th of 15 teams will be playing in a postseason bowl game with the Tide appearing in a bowl game each year under Saban's direction. Saban is also the only active coach to win two BCS National Championships and the first to accomplish the feat at two different schools.
RANKINGS: In the latest polls released on December 4, Alabama stands at No. 2 in the Associated Press rankings and the USA Today Coaches' poll, as well as the Harris Poll and the Bowl Championship Series standings. LSU is first on all four surveys.
LSU SERIES: This will be the 76th meeting between the Crimson Tide and Tigers and the second of the season. The Tide and Tigers met earlier this season, on November 5 in Tuscaloosa, with LSU taking a 9-6 verdict over Alabama in a game that needed an overtime period to decide a victor. Overall, the Tide leads the Tigers in the series 45-25-5 with the two teams splitting the last four meetings, including a 27-21 overtime victory in 2008 and a 24-15 win in 2009.
ONE OF THE WINNINGEST CLASSES OF ALL TIME: Alabama's 2011 senior class has won a school-record 47 games over the past four seasons while losing only six contests. The 47 wins is among the most in college football history and the second-best four-year total in Southeastern Conference history (Florida won 48 games from 2006-09). Nebraska holds the record for senior class wins among BCS schools with the 1997 class posting a 49-2 record with three national championships. Oklahoma (2003), USC (2005 & 2006) and Florida (2009) accumulated 48 wins. Oklahoma's 2004 senior class was 47-7 with Miami next, going 46-4 from 2000-03. Alabama's 1994 senior class won 45 games, although officially that total is 37 because of NCAA sanctions. The previous Alabama record was 44 wins for the 1980 senior class that captured national titles in 1978 and 1979. Among non-BCS schools, Boise State's 2009 senior class shares the record with a 49-4 mark, while the Broncos' 2010 senior class was 48-5. The 2011 class stands at 49-3. TCU's current senior class has 46 wins over the last four years.