It has really been slow here in SEC country when it comes to the slate of games. Many in the league have been getting fat off of creampuff opponents, with few meaningful games. There were a few games of note, or that turned out to be interesting, but everything has gone as planned (except for Arkansas, nobody saw that coming). That trend will continue this week, but (finally) next week, everything kicks into high gear. While we (im)patiently wait for that to happen, here are the only good things from a boring weekend.
Arkansas is a train wreck. Actually, a train wreck is being too modest. Arkansas is a malfunctioning plane that crashes into a train and tumbles down a mountain, causing the most massive, excruciating accident to ever happen. Last week, the Hogs quit during the Alabama game. Following that, Tyler Wilson called his teammates out. This week he returned to quarterback the Hogs and many, myself included, believed that with Wilson back the Hogs would be better. That went out the window with a 35-26 loss to Rutgers.
This team quit once again. Everything this team thought it was playing for is gone. Now they have to win five of their next eight to even become bowl eligible. Giving them a win over Tulsa and Kentucky (who they should beat, but nothing is certain anymore), they have to beat at least THREE of these teams: Texas A&M, Auburn, Ole Miss (yes, even Ole Miss can beat this Arkansas team), South Carolina, Mississippi State, and LSU. Arkansas is in real danger of no post season at all.
Missouri is still searching for its first conference win. The Tigers were shredded by Connor Shaw through the air, completing 20/21 hitting twenty straight passes and scoring one TD. Marcus Lattimore pounded the Tigers for a modest 85 yards, but 2 touchdowns. That quarterback controversy that was brewing is put to rest (at least this week). South Carolina looks to be in prime position to make their run, and it comes at the best time. For Missouri, again line play was the difference in the game, with South Carolina pushing around a warn-out Missouri front. The up-tempo offense is having a hard time dealing with the “old man” football of the SEC. It is going to be a long season at the “Zou”.
LSU finally started conference play, on the road, at Auburn. Normally, that is a cause for concern for the LSU faithful. Jordan-Hare Stadium has been a house of horrors for the purple and gold Tigers, only winning twice in more than a decade, with some wild shenanigans occurring most times. This time, however, Auburn is not that good. They were smashed by Mississippi State and took to the wire by ULM. LSU should have rolled…but they didn’t. LSU won a sloppy, to say the least, contest ending in a score of 12-10.
Looking at the box score, one would think LSU completely manhandled Auburn, but the score (the ultimate indicator) didn’t reflect that. Credit must be given to Auburn, they played as if their season was on the line, because it was, and gave LSU a hard time. However, LSU did everything in its power to lose that game. Silly penalties and turnover kept this game from following the blowout script we expected.
The biggest problem for LSU is the play of its offensive line. While Mettenberger didn’t have a stellar night and the wide receivers have had a problem with catching passes; if Mettenberger cannot get time to throw the ball LSU is in major trouble. Left tackle Josh Dworaczyk had trouble with one of the better pass rushers in the league, Corey Lemonier. He is the first of many to come for LSU. Fixing the Tigers poor pass protection has to be priority number one if LSU still has national championship aspirations.
Those were the main games of note, but let’s plow through the other scores quickly. Texas A&M thumped South Carolina State 48-3, while #23 Mississippi State beat South Alabama 30-10. In the other three non-conference battles, #1 Alabama crushed Florida Atlantic 40-7, while Ole Miss shutout the Green Wave of Tulane 39-0. Lastly, Tennessee bounced back from the Florida loss the week before to beat Akron 47-26.
In the SEC battles, #11 Florida continued their impressive start to the season by blanking Kentucky 38-0. In another beatdown, #6 Georgia continued to roll, beating Vanderbilt 48-3.
Be sure to tune in later this week, as we will be previewing the big matchups this weekend! Does the SEC deserve to have four team in the top 6? Let us know what you think in the comments!