NEW ORLEANS — At least two prominent national media pundits (and probably more) did not hold back this week when announcing that Alabama would beat LSU.

And while it certainly is not indefensible to have picked Nick Saban and company to continue dominance in a series they have totally dominated, at least two pundits - FOX Sports' Colin Cowherd and ESPN's Stephen A. Smith - decided to rub it in with their choices.

Granted, both men get paid handsomely to come up with strong opinions and they will both get them wrong sometimes. To both men's credit, they did own up and heap praise on LSU after the 46-41 win over the Tide.

Early in the week though, neither man gave the Tigers much of a chance.

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"(Nick Saban) is going to roll Saturday," said Cowherd on his show this week. "This is not a rivalry. This is hammer meets nail." Cowherd then talked about how LSU had been shut out in the last two meetings with Alabama in Baton Rouge.  "If Tua plays, Bama wins by two touchdowns."

Cowherd, though, did give LSU and Ed Orgeron credit in the win on twitter afterward, noting the smashing that LSU's offense put on Bama's D.

He also praised Orgeron.

But Cowherd wasn't alone in his strong prediction of Alabama over LSU. ESPN's Stephen A. also had the same take. Both had it for the same reasons. Both saw an improved LSU team, but both thought Bama and Saban would outsmart the Tigers.

"Did he go against Alabama," said Smith mockingly of LSU's Joe Burrow. "No he has not. This is the big time... He may not be ready... Roll with the Tide."

Smith was advising his colleagues on how to pick the game.

During the game he tweeted his shock at what was going on, and, as it became apparent that LSU would win, he tweeted his respect.