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No SEC team In Top 2 In BCS Standings After Iron Bowl

There is no SEC team in the Top 2 in the BCS Standings after Auburn’s victory over Alabama, folks.

Florida State – who beat Florida senseless – is No.1 and Ohio State – who survived a excremental decision by Michigan coach Brady Hoke to go for it on 4th down – is No.2. Auburn in No.3, Alabama is No.4 and Missouri is No.5.

If Auburn beats Missouri in the SEC Championship Game and Ohio State loses to Michigan State, the SEC can be ensured of a SEC team in the National Championship. If not, then…..

Here are the standings:

1) Florida State – .995

2) Ohio State – .950

3) Auburn – .923

4) Alabama – .854

5) Missouri – .843

Our question: When the No.3 and No.5 teams meet in the BCS on Saturday, does the winner hop Ohio State?

Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer, What Happened, Alabama?

Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer……” You know the chant. If your team has played Alabama, you’ve heard it. It’s the chant that’s crowed by Alabama fans when their team takes home games, Championships and Crystal Balls.

It’s chanted when they beat you. It’s a reminder that Alabama’s beaten you, and they’ve beaten the hell out of you.

Well at Jordan-Hare Stadium – and against Auburn, their most hated rival whatever the season – it was a little different.

Heeeeeeeeey Bama! Heeeeeeeeeey Bama! We just beat the hell outta you! Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer Go To Hell, Alabama!” screamed 80,000 crazed Auburn fans after they’d witnessed Chris Davis take a last-second 57-yard field goal attempt from Alabama kicker Aaron Griffith back 100-or-so yards to the house for an Auburn score that left a country – or at least this writer – screaming: “Oh my God! Oh my God! Oh my God!” over and over again. To quote the great Jack Buck, I didn’t believe what I just saw.

Nick Saban, the orchestrator of a lot of Auburn fans’ misery over the years, looked aghast. So did the Auburn sideline. The faces of the Alabama fans in the crowd didn’t look as though they’d lost a game. They looked as though they’d lost a child, a spouse or a parent. Hell, even CBS’ Special Alabama Cheerleaders Uncle Verne and Gary Danielson sounded as though they were going to cry.

Truth be told, the game shouldn’t have even been this close. Alabama didn’t miss one field goal. They missed three field goals even before the 56-yarder. Cade Foster had a case of the LSU-2011s, in which Alabama kickers – when it seems easier to put the pigskin through the posts – missed and LSU stole a victory in Tuscaloosa.

But it wasn’t that. AJ “Heisman Sports Illustrated NFL First Round National Champion” McCarron started badly. Amari Cooper and other receivers dropped pretty easy first down chances. They were bad on special teams. TJ Yeldon couldn’t get it going at the running back position. Saban’s machine looked as though it was short-circuiting. The weight of the day – a day in which the loser of the Iron Bowl would not pass ‘Go’, not collect $200, and not hit the jackpot of the SEC Championship Game and possible National Championship Game – seemed too much.

Auburn struck first. 7-0. Nick Marshall. Then Alabama struck back, counter-punching with three straight touchdowns to make it 21-7. At that point, Auburn was on the floor, reeling. Jordan-Hare was silent. The crowd were probably beginning to discuss what time to hit the exits to get beer. With 1.40 left in the half, Tre Mason scored, and Uncle Verne reminded us that his dad used to be in a ‘rap group’ (De La Soul, for your information).

Then in the second half, Auburn roared back. 21-21. Then, in the fourth quarter, Alabama delivered a rocking hard punch of its own. They were inside their own 1. The only way backwards was safety-land. Or worse. Then AJ Heisman Jesus McCarron stood up in the pocket, saw a safety cheat a little, and throw a 99-yard touchdown to Amari Cooper, which sucked the wind out of the stadium once again.

Alabama was celebrating. It was over, people. But no. Auburn came roaring back. Nick Marshall hit Sammie Coates with a 39-yard pass to make it 28-28. Jordan-Hare went batshit crazy again.

Then the bizarro happened. Alabama was driving and we all thought: “This one’s over. Free football. Take a knee, go to overtime, we can all win”. But Coach Saban, despite the fact that he had AJ Superman and the other offensive weapons as well as a stout defense, did something totally freaking illogical. He decided to try and nail a 56-yard field goal with a kicker who HAD HAD ONLY TWO TRIES IN HIS ENTIRE COLLEGE CAREER…..AND MISSED ONE OF THEM.

The rest was history.

Remember this: If Saban had nailed that kick, we would be talking about the Superballs of Nick Saban. We would have been talking about Iron Balls in an Iron Bowl. Instead, Auburn celebrated, and are going to Atlanta.

Oh, and they are playing Missouri for a title. Like the crazy season it’s been, we didn’t see that coming, either.

 

 

 

 

Who’s Going To Win The Iron Bowl? SEC ‘Rivalry Week’ Predictions

If you hadn’t noticed, this week in the SEC has its fair share of antagonism.

And we love it. On all three days of the Thanksgiving Holiday. And you know what? We’re thankful for it!

We love Alabama fans screwing with Auburn fans, and vice-versa. With both proving equally touchy.

We love Ole Miss and Mississippi State fans screwing with each other. With both proving equally touchy.

We love South Carolina and Clemson fans screwing with each other. Or more’s the case, Steve Spurrier screwing with Dabo Swinney, and Swinney desperately trying to rise above it. Which he’s failing to do.

We love Florida and Florida State screwing with each other, with Florida students, despite their school’s record, thanking God that they don’t have to go to the ‘SECOND SCHOOL IN THE STATE’

And Georgia fans just call Georgia Tech fans nerds. You know, as the Georgia Tech fans are whizzing past ’em in their Ferraris.

The SEC itself is trying to create a ‘new rivalry’ between LSU and Arkansas (‘The Battle For The Golden Boot’ has been played (deep voice) every year since 1996 but one of the more interesting games may be in Lexington, KY where Kentucky entertain Tennessee. Kentucky still needs a SEC win. 

Oh, and if it’s interesting (and cold) you want, go to Columbia…..Missouri, where it’ll be a balmy 44.6 F for the Texas A&M players (colder at night) where Missouri has to win its game against Texas A&M to go to the SEC Championship Game.

And while you were sleeping, there’s the battle of the rich schools when Vanderbilt go to play Wake Forest. They won’t be extending this to 2014, because it’s not a rivalry game anymore (The SEC wants a ‘Tennessee rivalry game between Vandy and Tennessee’ next year).

After that short introduction….

THURSDAY

OLE MISS AT MISSISSIPPI STATE

After the beating that was put on them last time the two teams played each other as well as the resurgence of Ole Miss, Mississippi State must be feeling a little like little sister at the moment. And despite beating Arkansas last week to gain its second SEC victory of the year, Mississippi State simply HAS to beat its hated inter-state rival to claim bowl eligibility. Ole Miss is already there at 7-4, but they were completely outclassed at home to Missouri last week. Both sides will be looking forward to this one in an atmosphere that’s going to be very, very loud. If you don’t like cowbells, do not watch this game. You’ll get a headache.

BOTTOM LINE: Ole Miss by a touchdown in an unexpectedly great SEC game.

FRIDAY

ARKANSAS AT LSU

Congratulations to LSU fans who finally saw their team play 60 minutes of football this season after a fantastically complete victory over Texas A&M. Sure, the Tigers benefited from the fact that that powers-that-be-in the Aggies co-ordination team didn’t want to run the ball at them, but they harassed Johnny Manziel into his worst night of his season, and maybe wrestled the Heisman Trophy away from him. On the other side of the ball, Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham STILL look like the best wide receiving duo in the nation, and Zach Mettenberger looks like a NFL QB. We expect them to prosper against Arkansas – even though early on, Razorbacks running back Alex Collins is going to cause them some problems.

BOTTOM LINE: Vegas’ 24.5 prediction a little high for our liking. We’ll take LSU to win, but only by 21. So in other words, less than the spread.

SATURDAY

ALABAMA AT AUBURN

Here’s one thing for certain: It sure is going to be LOUD in Jordan-Hare Stadium this weekend. LOUD because it’s Alabama/Auburn, and LOUD because if Auburn wins, it goes to the SEC Championship Game. Mind, if Alabama wins, the Crimson Tide go to the SEC Championship Game. No pressure, then. Can Nick Marshall and Auburn’s fast-paced offense catch ‘Bama cold? Can Bama’s relentless rushing attack and the Best Quarterback Ever (AJ McCarron) secure victory? These questions – and more- will be answered on Saturday afternoon.

BOTTOM LINE: Alabama’s a 10.5-point favorite with Vegas. We’re going for Alabama by 14. But it’s going to be close until the final couple of Alabama drives.

TEXAS A&M AT MISSOURI

We talked a lot about Johnny Football coming to Baton Rouge last weekend, but he was outschemed by LSU’s defensive co-ordinator, John Chavis. Let’s not think for one moment (he says, putting on his Khan voice in ‘Star Wars’) that Dave Steckel hasn’t look at the tapes (repeatedly) and is thinking up something similar for Johnny. That means that Kevin Sumlin’s going to have to use the rush game better, and trust in everyone else offensively – not just No.2. On the other side of the ball, the Texas A&M ‘D’, which struggled to stop Jeremy Hill last week, is going to have similar problems with Henry Josey, and Mizzou’s big receiver L’Damian Washington and Dorial Green-Beckham are going to cause A&M’s secondary a handful, too.

BOTTOM LINE: Missouri’s a 4.5-point favorite. We love Missouri to beat the spread and win by at least a touchdown. A&M’s got the firepower, but it ain’t got the stop-power.

CLEMSON AT SOUTH CAROLINA

One of the games of the week that’s making us incredibly indecisive, for a number of reasons. Connor Shaw (USC) can’t stop winning games for the ‘Cocks. Mike Davis is a hell of a running back – and we all saw what good running backs did to Clemson’s defense. But on the other side of the ball, it’s been difficult to deal with Tajh Boyd, Sammy Watkins and a host of other Tigers firepower, Clemson has a ‘SEC’ offense. Plus, Clemson’s already 1-0 against SEC teams, although the friendly confines of Death Valley are probably a little different to the screaming hordes of Williams-Brice, where families are known to fight over their allegiances at the Thanksgiving table.

BOTTOM LINE: If we’re honest, it’s too close to call. If we’re pushed, we’re taking Clemson, because we feel South Carolina’s five-point favorite standing is a little too high.

A GAME THAT’S GOING TO BE CLOSER THAN YOU THINK….

GEORGIA AT GEORGIA TECH

The SEC Football Blog has a buddy called Mack. Mack really, really, really, really, really, really, really hates Georgia Tech. He really does. In fact, I don’t know a lot of self-loathing Georgia Tech fans who hate their team more than Mack does. Every week on Facebook we’re hit by the wrongs that have been put on him by the Yellowjackets, and he starts everything with the word: “Nerds”. You know, like Nerds  don’t eventually take over the earth or anything. Anyway, there’s an expectation from Mack that Georgia fans will take over Bobby-Dodd Stadium (true) and that his team will win by 60 (false). Now, this blog just wanted to give Mack a big hug, and tell him how truly sorry we are for him and his goddawful injury stack of a season, which last week saw off quarterback Aaron Murray for the rest of the year. Murray’s groom Hutson Mason will take over, and he’s going to be OK, if a little rusty. The Bulldogs are going to rely a lot on running back Todd Gurley and the lengthy stable of Georgia running backs, but there will also be a play or two for the likes of Bennett and Wooten to make their mark. They’ll be going up against a defense that is more solid that it’s given credit for….even if it did get socked at Clemson two weeks ago. Georgia’s defense isn’t great, either.

BOTTOM LINE: Georgia Tech has a great running attack and Georgia is hopeless against the run. Georgia’s a 3.5-point favorite…and we think Georgia wins by five in a finger-biting game for Mack and nerds concerned.

GAMES THAT AREN’T GOING TO BE THAT CLOSE

VANDERBILT AT WAKE FOREST

Last time out Vanderbilt squeaked by awful Tennessee and Wake Forest only just lost to ACC Championship contender Duke (yes, Duke!), and we’re anticipating better from the Commodores this time round.

BOTTOM LINE: Vandy’s a 14-point favorite in this one, but we’re going the whole hog and saying: “Vandy by 21”. Don’t have us wrong on your next-to-final game, James Franklin.

GAMES THAT REALLY, REALLY AREN’T GOING TO BE CLOSE

FLORIDA STATE AT FLORIDA

Florida just lost to Georgia Southern. Florida State can’t seem to lose to anybody. Florida’s offense is horrific and makes mistakes. Florida State’s defense eats mistakes. Florida State’s offense clicks like a Maserati. Florida’s defense is rusty, hurt and praying to the Lord Football Jesus that this season ends quickly (it will, by the way Gators, in 60 minutes).

This is going to be horrible.

BOTTOM LINE: Florida State by 40. No-one in Vegas seems to be willing to take bets on it.

 

 

21 Things We Are Thankful For In The SEC

As it’s Thanksgiving time, we thought we’d go around and tell everyone what we’re thankful here in the SEC. And we’ve remembered every team. Yes, even you, Arkansas.

1) We’re thankful for processes. And the fact that life, for Nick Saban, is a process. Even leaping into AJ McCarron’s arms. His smile? Weirdest thing we’ve ever seen. Anyway, processes has brought Nicholas Lou Saban FOUR National titles. That’s pretty good going.

2) We’re thankful for heartbreak and drama. We in the SEC deliver a lot of that to ourselves (Georgia/Auburn; LSU/Georgia; Ole Miss/Vandy; Georgia/Tennessee; South Carolina/Tennessee; The Winner of the Alabama/Auburn game), and a lot to other people (see our National Championship Game opponents in the last seven years). WARNING: Heartbreak and drama do not have to co-exist with being a Georgia Bulldogs fan…..although it helps.

3) We’re thankful for Jadeveon Clowney: Because he’s a hell of a lot of fun to watch….even when he’s running at 75% and the play’s not going anywhere near him. He’s a man-giant!

4) We’re thankful for CLANG! CLANG! CLANG! CLANG! CLANG! I’m done with a headache in Starkville.

5) We’re thankful for Jesus. Or at least Hugh Freeze is. Speaking of Hugh, we’re grateful for Les, Mark, Dan, Steve, Will, Gary, Gus, Bret and Butch. We love you, our SEC coaches.

6) We’re thankful for Mike, Uga, Bully, Sir Big Spur, Reveille (Texas A&M fans really believe in Reveille’s legend, folks!), War Eagle, Smokey and Tusk. Our live mascots >>>> Your stuffed mascots. Anyone want to fight with Mike The Tiger?

7) We’re thankful for the times when people walk on the railtracks behind Sanford, go and have a beer with the Vol Navy, tailgate in the campus of Louisiana State University or The Grove at Ole Miss. We’re thankful for shots before 9am, and arriving two days before the game. We’re thankful for RVs, new friendships and new fun. It wouldn’t be SEC tailgating without drinking on the premises now, would it?

8)  We’re thankful for Johnny Football. God, we are so thankful for Johnny Football.

9) Georgia fans are thankful for Gurshall, Murray. LSU fans are thankfully for Jarvis and Odell. Bama fans are thankful for TJ and AJ the Brothers. Missouri’s thankful for DG-B and 5th year seniors.

10) We’re thankful for the 12th Man. That place is LOUD.

11) We’re thankful for cold. Well, we’re not, but SEC fans are soon going to realize what it’s like to be cold now Missouri’s in the SEC. OK– rephrase that. We’re thankful for the different temperatures.

12) In the same way, we’re thankful for the sweaty oven known as The Swamp on a hot early September’s day. If you haven’t experienced swimming in your clothes, go to The Swamp on a hot early September’s day.

13) We’re thankful for the Chomp! Chomp! Chomp! of the Florida Gators fans. We always know when you’re coming. And we always know when you’re leaving because the opposition fans are doing it right backatcha (see Florida, Georgia, LSU for details). Saying that, we’re also grateful for jorts.

14) We’re thankful for College Gameday, because they always seem to want to visit us and give our SEC schools some new publicity. Is it our pretty campuses? Our Top football teams? Our great action? All of the above? Welcome back Chris, David, Desmond, Kirk and Lee. Welcome. As long as you’re wearing our team’s headgear.

15) We’re thankful for pom-poms – or as we in the SEC call it – ‘shakers’. Nooooooo…..shakers aren’t terrible. They are awesome. Especially when in the SEC. Or at Penn State. Don’t worry Texas A&M, you’ll have ’em some day.

16)  We’re grateful for Kentucky. Because otherwise, there would be no ‘Bluegrass Miracle’. And when Kentucky wins a SEC game, we all kinda rejoice, because it means the conference is a little more even. Oh, and we’re grateful that generally, their basketball team’s damn good.

17) We’re thankful for Bobby Petrino. Because since he decided to go motorcycling with that young gal of his, Arkansas Football has been the gift that’s kept on giving. A lot of Wisconsin fans want to be thankful to Bret Bielema for leaving, too.

18) We’re thankful for legends like Tebow, Herschel, Peyton, Archie and Eli. And a whole lot more.

19) We’re thankful to Atlanta for hosting our bowl games, our opening games of the year, and our SEC Championship Game, and for supplying us with endless Coca-Cola (NOT Pepsi) and generally being great supporters of the SEC (as it should be).

20) We’re thankful for great, crazy SEC podcasts, like the one from AL.com from WarBlogle/CollegeAndMagnolia (Auburn) and Hunter (Alabama), the latter who finished every sentence of his Bama/Burn podcast with ‘Roll Tide’ (hosted by Matt Scailici); the Around Aggieland Podcast by Derek Aggie and Hunter (what is is about Hunters at the SEC?), which is freakin’ amazing, the Shutdown Fullcast, which is really a SEC podcast masking as a SEC podcast. I’m surprised that it hasn’t gone silent bearing in mind that they are all Gators fans who hosts it (Spencer Hall (Every Day Should Be Saturday), Jason Kirk and Celebrity Hot Tub, all of whom spend the show giggling their butts off like schoolchildren (AND IT’S AWESOME), and The Dawg Gone Podcast, featuring host Ludakit, who’s batcrap-crazy about his Dawgs. Or maybe just batcrap crazy. And finally, we mention the Solid Verbal guys, which is pretty well-rounded about college football but good if you might be heading to Vegas. Despite the fact that the host are Notre Dame and Oregon fans, we’d like to assure you now that you do an OK job.

21) We’re thankful we’re from the South, home of Oxford and oxfords, belles and smells, liquor and beer, and a great weekend of warm welcome and happiness…..as long as you’re rooting for the same team as us.

 

 

Johnny Football’d: Texas A&M falls in Week 13 SEC Power Rankings

We had looked forward SO MUCH to seeing LSU play Texas A&M. Well, we didn’t figure the LSU would actually play some defense and Texas A&M would deign not to run the ball with anyone apart from Johnny Manziel. It didn’t work out. Mind you, A&M’s defense stayed the same…. and LSU won pretty convincingly in a wet, horrible, swamp-like Baton Rouge.

Meanwhile, in The Swamp, Florida lost to Georgia Southern – a loss which not only embarrasses the conference but also could see Will Muschamp & Co out of a job.

So, here are your SEC Power Rankings for Week 13. And yes, we’re aware that this is a big week for the SEC…..

1. ALABAMA Hatred: Auburn, Auburn fans, and anything that has a War Eagle Tiger. Also dislikes Tennessee greatly. What the 2013 team is like: Damned Good. Best in the country.

2. AUBURN Hatred: Alabama, Alabama fans, and anything that has a weird elephant on it. Dislikes Georgia greatly, too. But not as much as Alabama. What the 2013 team is like: Fast-paced, fun to watch, not that great defensively. But coached by a whizz. d

3. MISSOURI Hatred: Kansas. They might not play ’em anymore, but it’s still Kansas. What the 2013 team is like: Great D, fast running backs, able QB, and two very, very good wide receivers.

4. LSU Hatred: Everybody. Maybe Alabama, Auburn and Florida more than others. What the 2013 team is like: Young defensively, a lot of talent offensively. Also have two very, very good wide receivers.

5. SOUTH CAROLINA Hatred: Nothing comes close to the hatred the Gamecocks feel for Clemson. What the 2013 team is like: Used to depend on a superstar. He’s been injured a lot. Now depend on a running back called Mike. You know, because everyone wants to be like Mike.

6. TEXAS A&M Hatred: Texas. It will ALWAYS be Texas. What the 2013 team is like: Love Johnny Football. Love Mike Evans. HATE the defense.

7. OLE MISS Hatred: LSU, Mississippi State. What the 2013 team is like: It’s young, but talented. The Missouri game on Saturday proved how long a way they’ve got to go.

8.GEORGIA Hatred: Florida. And Tennessee. And themselves when they are losing. What the 2013 team is like: Injured. Very. injured. But good if not, you know, injured.

9. VANDERBILT Hatred: Tennessee. What the 2013 team is like: It’s coached by a great guy. It’s got a future NFL wide receiver. But they aren’t going to compete for the SEC this year or any year in the near future.

10. MISSISSIPPI STATE Hatred: Ole Miss. What the 2013 team is like: It’s really not that good. But it can beat Kentucky. So it’s better than Kentucky.

11. FLORIDA Hatred: Georgia, Tennessee and LSU What the 2013 team is like: It got injured, and then it lost to Georgia Southern.

12. TENNESSEE Hatred: Florida, Alabama, Georgia What the 2013 team is like: It’s young. It depended on a great offensive line this year, and it didn’t turn out to be that good. Marquez North IS good.

13. KENTUCKY Hatred: Tennessee What the 2013 team is like: It 0-fer in the conference. That’s what it’s like. They’ve been better defensively this season, though.

14. ARKANSAS Hatred: Texas and Texas A&M and they are trying to create a new(ish) one with LSU What the 2013 team is like: Terrible. Which for Wisconsin fans, is karma.

Johnny Football Comes to Baton Rouge: SEC Week 13 Previews

The end of the college football season is upon us, but we’re still nowhere near deciding who’s going to go to the National Championship Game: Alabama, Ohio State, Florida State, or upstart Baylor.

 

But while College Gameday and the country’s talking about Baylor’s trip to Oklahoma State (by the way, we’re taking Baylor, but under the 10 point spread), the best of us should be emotionally exhausted with the scorefest in Baton Rouge when Johnny Football comes to visit LSU.

Here’s our predictions 

Texas A&M at LSU

THIS is going to be one heck of a game. We’ve got one of the best quarterbacks ever to play college football (Johnny Manziel), a future NFL first round quarterback (Zach Mettenberger), three NFL-ready wide receivers (LSU’s Odell Beckham Jr and Jarvis Landry, and A&M’s Mike Evans), one of the best running backs in college football (LSU’s Jeremy Hill), and two of the most unpredictable offensive coaches you’ll ever see in LSU’s Les Miles and his counterpart Kevin Sumlin. It’s going to be awesome.

And if you love defensive football, you might want to avoid this one. Because at the moment, both sides can’t play it. But then CAN score points. And with this game in the late afternoon at Tiger Stadium, it’s going to be noisy.

BOTTOM LINE: LSU is a 4-1/2 point favorite. We’re going to take LSU, because we think they’ve got a LITTLE more defensively. And we think they’ll win by a touchdown in a high-scoring classic.

Missouri at Mississippi

The maths is pretty simple: If Missouri wins its next two games, it’s going to Atlanta to play in the SEC Championship Game against the winner of the Alabama-Auburn game, which happens over next week’s Thanksgiving Break. Unfortunately, the games are tricky: a road trip to upset-minded Ole Miss and a home game against Johnny Manziel and Texas A&M at home.

Anyway, Missouri has the weapons: It’s got quarterback James Franklin returning from injury, and two exceptional wide receivers in L’Damian Washington and Dorial Green-Beckham, as well as one of this year’s best pass rushers in Michael Sam.

Ole Miss, on the other hand, is on fire after beating LSU a few weeks ago, and quarterback Bo Wallace and his own wide receiving trio of Donte Moncrief, Laquan Treadwell and Ja-Mes Logan, as well as rushing star Jeff Scott, can put up points with anybody.

BOTTOM LINE: Missouri’s a 2-1/2 point favorite. We’re going with Missouri to beat the spread in another tight game. By a field goal.

Mississippi State at Arkansas

There’s nothing to split between these two sides…..because both sides are really, really poor. Arkansas hasn’t recovered from losing a ton of talent last year (although watch out for running back Alex Collins), and Mississippi State may have caused four turnovers against mighty Alabama, but they dropped a number of passes against the Crimson Tide that could really have made their 20-7 a heck of a lot closer. In fact, all they did was make a lot of people in Vegas very unhappy indeed.

What might be interesting is how Mississippi State’s offense plays – they put up 41 at A&M and have been showing a little sign of life.

Anyway, so why have we picked this? Because it might we one of the day’s closest games.

BOTTOM LINE: Mississippi State’s a 1-1/2 point favorite. We’re taking Mississippi State in one of the most unentertaining games of the year.

VANDERBILT AT TENNESSEE

Tennessee’s hasn’t had the worst season thus far, and we expect a fired-up UT side ready battle Vanderbilt for victory in the ‘Tennessee Challenge’ (they should have a trophy for this one, we believe).

We still worry about the Tennessee quarterbacking situation with Joshua Dobbs at the helm, but we still don’t think that Vanderbilt – who struggled to score on Kentucky’s defense last week  – is that good themselves, aside from Jordan Matthews. Vandy’s ‘D’ is going to have to deal with Marquez North….if Dobbs can get to him.

This one’s going to be pretty close.

BOTTOM LINE: Tennessee – a 2-1/2 point favorite – wins by 7 in an unexpectedly close, great game.

KENTUCKY AT GEORGIA 

Georgia lost (yet) another heartbreaker this season when they were defeated by their own failure to bat down a last minute heave from Auburn’s Nick Marshall, but you really can’t blame this one on head coach Mark Richt, offensive co-ordinator Mike Bobo, or quarterback Aaron Murray. You can blame it (mostly) on Todd Grantham, Georgia’s defensive co-ordinator.

On Senior Day,  the faithful at Sanford Stadium are going to say goodbye to Murray (amongst others) , and hope to hang 40 or 50 on Kentucky while they are it.

On the other hand, Kentucky’s still got no SEC wins, and they didn’t look all that great against Vanderbilt.

BOTTOM LINE: Georgia – a 24 point favorite – wins by 35.

GAMES WE DON’T CARE ABOUT IT THE TEAMS WILL WIN BY A TON…..

GEORGIA SOUTHERN AT FLORIDA, CHATTANOOGA AT ALABAMA AND COASTAL CAROLINA AT SOUTH CAROLINA

 

 

 

Florida AD backs Muschamp

Florida AD Jeremy Foley has backed under-fire Head Coach Will Muschamp.

He told Florida Gators website Gatorzone.com:

“As athletic director, I’m a thousand percent convinced that Will Muschamp is the guy to lead this football program,’’ Foley said inside his office at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. “Nothing has changed in what we feel about Will Muschamp from the day we hired him.

“Everyone around here wants the same thing. We want to do what is right for the University of Florida. We understand that this football season has not gone the way any of us wanted it to go, certainly not the way our fans wanted it to go, and most of all, not the way Will Muschamp wanted it to go.

“We have a history of being successful, we have a history of fixing things when they need to be fixed, and that is what is going to happen here, and Coach Muschamp is the one that will fix it.”

Beset by injuries, Muschamp has had a horrible season, losing to Georgia, LSU and Vanderbilt (the last one at home for the first time since 1947), and there has been nothing offensive to talk about all season. Defensively, Florida has got weaker as the season has gone on as they continued to beaten up.

If Florida loses to South Carolina and hated rivals Florida State in successive weeks, the Gators will miss a bowl game.

 

Florida Gators Looking Toothless: SEC Power Rankings After Week 11

If you think that things couldn’t have gotten a lot worse for the Florida Gators football program, then they did. They got a lot worse. They got Put-Will-Muschamp-On-The-Freaking-Hotseat Worse. That’ll happen when you lose at home to Vanderbilt for the first time since two years after the Second World War ended (that’s 1947 folks!).

Elsewhere in the SEC, Alabama got a fright from LSU but dealt with them unsympathetically, we saw the Good Johnny and Bad Johnny at The Last Home Game at the old Kyle Field (but A&M scored 50 which was enough to beat Mississippi State), and there were wins for Ole Miss, Missouri, Auburn and Georgia.

Anyway, here’s your SEC Power Rankings. Hint: Florida isn’t No.1.

1. ALABAMA: Top of the BCS, Top of the SEC, top of the world. Alabama started slowly against LSU, before hitting their stride in the fourth quarter and absolutely dominating their hated rivals. Word to the wise though: They might want to play better in the first half of games. Florida State might not be so forgiving.

2. AUBURN: Went to Tennessee, saw the Volunteers couldn’t stop the run, and put at least 400 yards on the ground of them. Offensively, this team is scary good. So this Gus Malzahn experiment is working, right?

3. MISSOURI: Took advantage of South Carolina being off to dart up the SEC Power Rankings (unfair I know, but there it goes) with a predictably convincing 48-17 smashing of Kentucky. We’d like to note that Dorial Green-Beckham (4 TDs in this one)’s kicking into gear. Suddenly, Missouri have TWO really, really, really, good receivers to be thrown to. And their ‘D’ is pretty good, too. Future SEC opponents, watch out.

4. SOUTH CAROLINA: Steve Spurrier was really angry about how his team played against Bye Week. “We’re not a very good team”, he whined after drinking a wine or two on the Steve Spurrier Gamecock Regional TV Football Show, or whatever it’s called. That’s cool, Steve….next week it’s Florida.

5. TEXAS A&M: Aggies fans complain at me that Johnny Manziel & Co are only one horsecollar away from being 9-1. True. But Johnny Manziel has had to play his balls off this season because your D has, to coin a British expression, been a load of balls. The defense once against showed its unballsiness and was terrible. You know, Giving-Up-41-To-Mississippi-State Terrible.

6. GEORGIA: A slow start against Appalachian State, but the Dawgs put up 31 in the second half to run away with the victory. The Dawgs can’t afford such a slow start against Auburn (especially with its defense). Gurley’s 75 yards on 13 attempts shows us that either Appalachian State’s pretty good at stopping the run, or Gurley’s still not right conditioning-wise. We’d argue the latter.

7. OLE MISS: Hugh Freeze said some grace over some burnt pig, and Ole Miss beat the Razorbacks by 10. It wasn’t the most comfortable of victories, especially with Ole Miss held scoreless in the fourth quarter. But when you’re playing Brandon Allen, you know you’re going to be OK in the end. And Allen couldn’t throw properly at the end.

8. LSU: Started like men on fire against Alabama, but turnovers ensured that the men of fire were turned into the Ring of Fire in the fourth quarter by Nick Saban’s running attack. Those of you who’d actually watched LSU this year would know that LSU couldn’t stop anybody later in games, and that Zach Mettenberger’s offensive line went on vacation. It’s happened all year long.

9. VANDERBILT: We half-thought about putting Vandy above LSU after their victory in The Swamp, but save to say, Florida’s not very good. But credit goes to James Franklin. Anyone think he might be somewhere bigger next year?

10. FLORIDA: This UF team is so bad that we might see Will Muschamp and OC Brent Pease replaced at year-end. We wouldn’t be surprised, either.

11. MISSISSIPPI STATE: Nice comeback from Dak Prescott and the Bulldogs, but their defense couldn’t stop Johnny Manziel. Then again, nor could Alabama. Would still be surprised if Starkville keeps Dan Mullen around. He’ll get clang’d.

12. TENNESSEE: Can’t stop the run, and taught a lesson. Easy.

13. ARKANSAS: Lost by 10 to Ole Miss and must be wondering “If only we had a QB”.

14. KENTUCKY:  The best thing about the boys from Lexington is the basketball team.

Gamecocks Keep Coming: SEC Week 10 Power Rankings

 

Georgia 23, Florida 20….and….er…..nothing else in the SEC was really that interesting or that close.

1) ALABAMA: Nick Saban filled Bryant-Denny stadium on Saturday by telling the fans that he wanted the fans for all four quarters against BYE WEEK. Alabama won 57-3, and Nick Saban is said to be STILL screaming at Kirby Smart about it….

2) AUBURN: Continued to prove that they can get over a potential upset hurdle (Phil Steele predicted that Arkansas would score the upset on the ESPNU College Football podcast (although we didn’t agree), but burning some pig on Saturday night. The biggest argument happened when Arkansas coach Bret Bielema thought Anthony Swain was timewasting by falling over during an Arkansas drive. Matt Millen of ESPN agreed. Malzahn didn’t agree. . It came out that Swain had a bruised knee. Auburn won the pissing contest 35-17. Auburn’s rolling, people. Look out Georgia.

3) SOUTH CAROLINA: STOP. THE. PRESS. SOUTH CAROLINA ACTUALLY MANAGED TO CLOSE A GAME OUT. I say that in capitals, because it’s rarely happened this season. Sure, they lost the fourth quarter 6-0, but they were already 34-10 up at that stage, and played really, really well. Mike Davis ran for his usual 100 yards. If he’s not up for a Heisman….then he should be. Carolina’s playing with confidence, and y’all should be worried.

4) MISSOURI: Clouted Tennessee 31-3 to assure everyone that a) The Volunteers weren’t on the comeback trail and b) Missouri’s one hell of a team and c) If everyone thinks they will stumble against Ole Miss and Texas A&M after shooting themselves in the foot against South Carolina, they’ve got another thing coming.

5) TEXAS A&M: A truly horrible first quarter….and then the Aggies blew UTEP away, winning out 57-7 and more importantly, covering the spread. That’s all we really have to say about that game.

6) GEORGIA: NEWSFLASH FROM JACKSONVILLE: The Georgia and Florida players are STILL chipping away at each other….and it’s Monday, despite all the fans having gone home. Seriously though, UGA showed how good they were on offense with the return of Todd Gurley and Michael Bennett in beating their hated rivals Florida 23-20. The defense could still do with a lot of work, though. Todd Grantham’s still on the hot-seat.

7) OLE MISS: Hugh Freeze has scared the crap out of the fans by going 2-1 on heartbreaking victories/losses this season already, but now he’s scaring the crap out of his players. And there was me thinking evangelicals thought Hallowe’en was evil.

8) LSU: If LSU beats Alabama on Saturday, it’s because the team didn’t sleepwalk a half of a game, like they did against Furman and Ole Miss. They also win because Zach Mettenberger is back to not throwing touchdowns and back to making good decisions. And because Odell Beckham and Jarvis Landry scared the hell out of the Alabama secondary, and that Jeremy Hill managed to run the ball. And the ‘D’ actually stopped someone.

9) FLORIDA: If Will Muschamp is put to rest at the end of the 2013 season, his gravestone will read: “WILL MUSCHAMP: COULD NOT WIN AT A COCKTAIL PARTY”. He’s 0-3 against Georgia as a coach in Jacksonville, and 0-4 as a player FOR Georgia in Jacksonville. He’s not the only person who can’t win in Jacksonville. How ’bout dem Jags??

10) VANDERBILT: Nothing has changed since Vandy’s bye week, in the fact that I still believe Jordan Matthews is great, that the team’s struggling without Austyn Carta-Samuels…..and that the team has gone backwards since Week 1- even though the Commodores beat Georgia in Week 9.

11)  TENNESSEE: Freshman QB went 26-42 with 246 yards in his debut against Tennessee. And 2 INTs. And lost a fumble. And the team went 2-for-13 on third downs. It was always going to be hard in Columbia. So this wasn’t a great surprise.

12) MISSISSIPPI STATE: Despite putting up more yards than South Carolina (385-304), having more time of possession, and only losing the rushing game by 10 yards, the Bulldogs came out of Williams-Brice with the ‘L’. That’ll be because they had one….two….three….four….FIVE turnovers. That’ll lose you a ballgame right there. 

13) KENTUCKY: Kentucky’s 48-14 victory over Alabama State has us believing that the ‘O-Fer Bowl’ between Arkansas and Kentucky should be played on the same day as the SEC Championship Game (at 12.21pm). A good win for Coach Stoops, albeit against a far-inferior opponent….who we tipped to cover (sorry y’all!).

14) ARKANSAS: I’m getting allergic to bacon just watching these Razorbacks get eaten this season.

 

10)

Alabama tops first BCS Standings, Mizzou 5th

Alabama has topped the first BCS standings of the 2013 season.

The undefeated Crimson Tide is No.1, followed by Florida State, Oregon, Ohio State, and SEC East leader Missouri. Stanford, Miami, Baylor, Clemson and Texas Tech round out the Top 10.

Auburn is No.11, LSU is No.13, Texas A&M is No.16, South Carolina is 21.

Interestingly, Alabama only ranked top in two of the five computer rankings, while Florida State ranked No.1 in 4.

The whole BCS standings chart is here.

Here’s your BCS Top 10.

1 Alabama

2 Florida State

3 Oregon

4 Ohio State

5 Missouri

6 Stanford

7 Miami

8 Baylor

9 Clemson

10 Texas Tech

BOTTOM LINE: If all the top three sides stay unbeaten, we think Oregon is going to leapfrog Florida State for second place. And here’s why: Florida State plays a No.10 Miami side which is good but not great, while Oregon plays UCLA, Stanford and Oregon State. 

 

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