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Sports Then and Now



College Classic Rewind: LSU Defeats ‘Bama in Inaugural “Saban Bowl” 55

Posted on November 01, 2011 by A.J. Foss

This Saturday, #1 LSU travels to Tuscaloosa to face off with #2 Alabama in the latest “Game of the Century”.

This showdown between the Tigers and the Crimson Tide is the latest chapter in a SEC rivalry where the intensity has risen since Nick Saban became the head coach at Alabama.

From 2000-2004, Saban was the head coach at LSU where he compiled a 48-16 record, won two SEC Championships, and the 2003 BCS National Championship in his five seasons at Baton Rouge.

Saban left LSU following the 2004 season to become the head coach of the NFL’s Miami Dolphins while Les Miles moved from Oklahoma State to become the LSU head coach.

During the next two years, Miles would lead LSU to back-to-back 11-win seasons while Saban would struggle in Miami as he compiled a 15-17 record during that same time.

Almost immediately after the 2006 NFL season ended, Saban left Miami to become the Tide’s head coach, which in the minds of LSU fans was seen as an act of betrayal since ‘Bama played in the same division as LSU, the SEC West.

So when ‘Bama hosted LSU on the first Saturday in November 2007, it was an emotionally-charged game for the Tigers as the fan base demanded a victory over Saban and the Tide.

Alabama entered the game as the #17 team with a 6-2 record, and were 4-1 in the SEC, tying them with #3 LSU who were 7-1 but also had a 4-1 SEC record. Read the rest of this entry →

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    • Hall of Famer Tony Oliva
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      After waiting for 45 years after his retirement, the Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month is finally taking his rightful place as a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame.

      Before injuries cut short his Hall of Fame worthy career, Tony Oliva was one of the best hitters in baseball and combined with Hall of Famers Rod Carew and Harmen Killebrew to make the Minnesota Twins a perennial American League contender during the late 1960s.

      Discovered on the baseball fields of Cuba by a Minnesota Twin scout, Oliva came to the United States in 1961 and within three years the American League Rookie of the Year. There have been many great MLB players from Cuba, including a new generation of stars today, but it is hard to argue that there has been a better player from the island in MLB than Oliva.

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