The 2011 college football season comes to an end on Monday night with the 2012 BCS National Championship Game between the No. 1 LSU Tigers and the No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide. It will be a rematch of their Nov. 5 contest, which the Tigers won in overtime, 9-6.
For Alabama's offensive coordinator, Jim McElwain, this will be his goodbye to the program, as he leaves after the game to be the Colorado St. Rams' new head coach. He has been wearing both hats since he was hired on Dec. 13. McElwain has directed an offense that is No. 71 in passing yards (213.6) and No. 14 in rushing yards (219.8). The latter comes through the skill of Trent Richardson, a Heisman Trophy finalist who ran for 1,583 yards and 20 touchdowns entering the game.
However, this game is expected to be dominated by the defenses. Alabama allows a NCAA-low of 8.8 points per game while LSU is at No. 2 with 10.5. Given the earlier result during the 2011 game, the BCS title game might have trouble breaking 20 total combined points, possibly reminiscent of the 2011 Orange Bowl between Oklahoma and Florida State. The Sooners won, 13-2.
No matter the outcome, the SEC will hold the BCS title for a sixth straight year and for the eighth time overall since the BCS started in the 1998 season.
Game date, time: 6:30 p.m. MT, Monday, Jan. 9, 2012
Location: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, La.
TV channel: ESPN/ESPN3
Odds: LSU favored by 1 point on some lines, Alabama by 2 points on others
For more on the BCS National Championship Game, visit Alabama blog Roll Bama Roll and LSU blog And The Valley Shook. For more on Jim McElwain and the Colorado State Rams, stick with SB Nation Denver and head over to the Mountain West Connection.