Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
Ho-hum. Alabama did it again.
All that hype, all that deserved praise for LSU, yet the Crimson Tide entered a raucous Death Valley environment and overwhelmed their SEC counterparts with a 29-0 beatdown.
Nick Saban‘s squad prevented the Tigers from reaching the red zone until the fourth quarter and outgained them 576-196.
Bama improved to 9-0 and clinched the SEC West. The Tide won their eighth straight meeting in the series, a stretch that features three shutouts—including two straight in Baton Rouge.
All this happened against the No. 3 team in the nation. Aren’t we bored?
If you are, well, that’s understandable. It’s like Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant and the Golden State Warriors in the NBA right now. You know what’s happening. You know how this story ends. Though we’ll keep watching, we’re just waiting on the inevitable.
Alabama still has to play Mississippi State and Auburn with lower-division Citadel sandwiched between to close the regular season. Nevertheless, the Crimson Tide will probably be three-touchdown favorites or better in each of those matchups.
According to ESPN insider Phil Steele, one oddsmaker set the opening line for the SEC Championship Game between Alabama and Georgia at -13.5 in favor of the Tide. So much for a competitive title clash in the sport’s best league.
Perhaps you’re searching for the fast-forward button. And it’s silly to suggest: “No, friend. Sit back and soak up every moment of this greatness.” If you’re on the opposite side of the fence already, that’s not changing after another domination.
Still, this is peak excellence in college football.
Love it or hate it, this is a marvel to watch.
Saban has continually raised the bar in a sport that has celebrated several dynasties but discarded them far faster than the Crimson Tide have allowed. For more than a decade, Alabama has been the biggest game of the season for every opponent. Yet that emotional boost rarely amounts to anything after the opening whistle.
Don’t like it? Get better.
That’s not a simple task, clearly. LSU coach Ed Orgeron told reporters as much after the shutout loss, pointing out the Tigers’ need for—to put it bluntly—better players to compete with the Tide.
Brett Martel @brettmartel
#LSU’s Orgeron: “Alabama overpowered us. When you max-protect and you’re doing everything you can and their beating you, you’ve got to look at personnel. I don’t think it was scheme at all.” He says LSU needs to recruit more linemen as good as ‘Bama’s on both sides.
The only team with a roster that can compare to Alabama’s is Clemson—or, you know, the LeBron James-led Cleveland Cavaliers. The Cavs snagged one from Golden State—like Clemson did Bama—but just one.
We shouldn’t be complaining about programs striving for greater heights than we’ve ever seen, though. This involves better recruiting, better player development. The target, however, isn’t simply greatness. No, it’s historical excellence.
Largely thanks to star quarterback Tua Tagovailoa—who attempted his first fourth-quarter pass of the season Saturday, and he threw just one—Alabama is in the conversation for best team in college football history.
The Crimson Tide have never enjoyed this level of production on offense. Tagovailoa, who has accounted for 30 touchdowns in nine games compared to a single interception in nearly 200 attempts, is turning this into a record-breaking campaign.
And Saturday’s throwback performance from a still-elite-but-not-perfect defense solidified that thought in a campaign full of blowouts.
Jeffrey Wright @JWright929espn
The two best college teams of the modern era are 2001 Miami and 2004 USC. Miami played two games within 11 points, and USC played five games with 11 points. Alabama still hasn’t played a game within 22 points this year.
Now imagine beating that team.
Sure, even the theoretical options may seem limited. Notre Dame or Michigan? Doubt it. Ohio State, Oklahoma or West Virginia, any of you have enough defense? Georgia almost feels like a stretch. Clemson is the best hope, given its immense talent and past matchups with Alabama.
If it happens, though, the underdog immediately lays a claim to one of the greatest upsets in college football history.
And the alternative is watching a legendary team thrive.
We understand the prevalence of Alabama fatigue. But like it or not, this era of Crimson Tide football is leaving a remarkable imprint the sport will remember for a long, long time.
Even if it seems a little boring right now.
Follow Bleacher Report writer David Kenyon on Twitter @Kenyon19_BR.