|Nick Saban is using last week's upsets of Top 5 teams to keep the Tide focused against Mizzou. (US Presswire)|
Kickoff: 3:30 p.m. ET (CBS)
Spread: Alabama by 21.5
Watchability: The consensus No. 1 team in the AP poll, rested Alabama shouldn't have any trouble dispatching depleted Missouri. But coach Nick Saban is reminding his players that three of the nation's Top 5 teams just got beat Saturday. "There's a lot of parity in college football," Saban said. "The only thing predictable about college football is its unpredictability." Mizzou is coming off a 19-15 home loss to Vandy, which entered 1-12 in its last 13 SEC road games. "The mood kind of (stinks)," wideout T.J. Moe told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "It's one of those where you sulk in it for a day or two, and not just an hour or two. But you get over it and get an opportunity like this. Someone does it every year, knocks off the No. 1 team."
Shining stars: Alabama: AJ McCarron. The junior has thrown 12 TDs without an INT this season and has thrown 206 straight passes dating to last season without a pick, breaking Brody Croyle's school record of 190. Freshman Amari Cooper is his favorite target, with 17 catches for 222 yards and three scores. Missouri: Kendial Lawrence. With star QB James Franklin out with a sprained knee, redshirt freshman QB Corbin Berkstresser will need a huge game from Lawrence to have any measure of success. Lawrence ranks ninth in the SEC with 81.2 rushing yards per game. He's averaging 5.7 yards per carry and has scored five TDs.
Who could steal the show: Alabama: Dee Milliner. The junior corner could take advantage of Berkstresser's inexperience. He has two INTs, nine pass breakups, 14 tackles and leads the nation with 2.75 passes defended per game. Missouri: E.J. Gaines. Also a junior corner, Gaines leads all SEC defensive backs with seven tackles for loss. He's made 38 tackles and broken up five passes.
You going? Ranking the road trip: Faurot Field was electric for Mizzou's SEC debut against Georgia, and this game sold out months ago. But with the Tigers winless in conference play and likely to get flattened, the stadium could empty early.
Magic number for Alabama: 22. Alabama is perfect on its 22 red-zone trips. The Tide have scored 16 TDs and six field goals. Oklahoma State and Buffalo are the only other teams that have cashed in every red-zone chance.
The game comes down to: Mizzou gets freshman WR Dorial Green-Beckham back from suspension, but the Tigers are starting a shaky quarterback behind an even shakier offensive line. Alabama leads the nation in points allowed (7.0), total defense (191.6) and turnover margin (plus-12).
Prediction: Alabama 38, Missouri 10
For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis from SEC bloggers Daniel Lewis and Larry Hartstein, follow @CBSSportsSEC.