The No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide (10-1, 6-1 SEC) will look to regain a foothold on the BCS standings when they take on the Auburn Tigers (3-8, 0-7 SEC) in NCAA football action.
Just hours before the Iron Bowl became meaningful on a national scale, Crimson Tide center Barrett Jones summed up the matchup's significance to ESPN.
"It's the West, it's all our hopes and dreams, and also, it's Auburn."
A win over the Tigers would place Alabama in the Southeastern Conference championship game against No. 3 Georgia, with the winner most likely playing in Miami for the BCS title. All of their previosuly broken pieces seemed to fall into place just a mere hours after the Crimson Tide had prevailed over the ailing Western Carolina by a 49-0 blowout.
Last Saturday's losses suffered by Oregon and Kansas State halted Alabama's weeklong position outside of the BCS title picture, which was the result of a loss to No. 9 Texas A&M. The Iron Bowl will again encompass the highest of stakes, even though Auburn is slated to be blown out by Nick Saban's program.
Nonetheless, the Crimson Tide won the national championship in both 2009 and 2011 while Auburn did it in 2010.
Interestingly enough, the Crimson Tide were ranked No. 1 heading into the 2008 Iron Bowl but ended up losing to Florida in the SEC championship matchup and to Utah in the Sugar Bowl.
The Tigers will try to prevent themselves from going winless in the SEC for the very first time since they went 0-6 during Doug Barfield's last season in 1980. While Auburn will clearly do their best to put up a fight against powerhouse Alabama, they're currently listed as 34-point underdogs on Sunday.
CLICK HERE to watch the Alabama Crimson Tide take on the Auburn Tigers via free live stream. Coverage of the NCAA football matchup is set to begin at 2:30 PM CST on Saturday, Nov. 24.