LSU-Bama will go down to wire

How the Tigers will stay close with the Tide, and more bold predictions

Updated: November 1, 2012, 12:33 PM ET
By Phil Steele | Special to ESPN Insider
HillBrett Davis/US PresswireJeremy Hill could be a difference-maker for LSU against Alabama.

I was 2-2 in my bold predictions last week, and while Florida let me down for the first time this season, Ohio State beat Penn State to move my toss-up game record to 7-2.

Here are this week's bold predictions.

1. LSU will give Alabama all that it can handle
All year long we have heard from a majority of analysts that the defending national champion Alabama Crimson Tide are the clear-cut No. 1 team in the country and that no one else is close. While the Tide clearly deserve their ranking to date, this week they face their first legitimate test of the season, particularly at the line of scrimmage, as they travel to play the LSU Tigers in a rematch of last season's national title game.

While no one outside of Baton Rouge is giving the Tigers a chance (Las Vegas has listed Alabama as a 9.5-point favorite), I think the Tigers will keep it very close and this one will come down to the wire much like last year's game in Tuscaloosa, in which then-No. 1 LSU upset No. 2 Alabama 9-6 in overtime.

Phil Steele

ESPN Insider