Last week in the SEC, we got a Big XII shootout between Alabama and Texas A&M, but not much else in conference play. The league office must have thought fans would need an emotional break after the Game of the Season was played because this week leaves a lot to be desired. Only two conference games are on the agenda this weekend, with additional games against Big Ten and ACC opponents. It is a slow week in the SEC, but that is normally when the fireworks happen.
Odds and Ends for the Week
Alabama and Texas A&M get a light week after their high scoring tilt, taking on Colorado State and SMU respectively. The tune up games may be just what the doctor ordered for both teams. Last week’s game was as thrilling as it was revealing. It seems the Aggies will be dynamic as ever on offense, but they cannot stop anyone on defense. Alabama’s offense, particularly the line, answered the doubters after a less than stellar debut, but some serious chinks were revealed in the defense’s armor.
Vandy and Georgia will both roll as they play U Mass and North Texas. Both could be looking ahead to conference games next week (Vandy plays Mizzou, while Georgia welcomes LSU), but that should not hinder their victory. Keep an eye out for Troy at Mississippi State. Troy has played State tough in the past few years. The Bulldogs should win, but Troy may make them sweat.
Mizzou and Arkansas take on a pair of BCS foes. Missouri has shown improvement this season and should be able to easily handle Indiana. The Hooisers’ only quality game has been a lost to Navy. Arkansas travels to New Jersey to deal with Rutgers. Rutgers toughest challenge was Fresno State, a game in which they lost. Arkansas should win, but this could be the last game the Hogs are a reasonable favorite for the rest of the season.
Tennessee vs. Florida
Years ago, this game would mark the beginning of conference play for the two heavyweights in the East. But while Florida has remained in the upper echelon, Tennessee is trying to climb back into that conversation. Last we saw the Florida Gators lose an ugly game to the Miami Hurricanes. In that game Florida turned the ball over five times, four of those by quarterback Jeff Driskel. Those mistakes overshadowed career highs in yardage for Driskel, showing some improvement. Last week, the Vols were absolutely destroyed by Oregon. No shame in that, but that game has caused Tennessee to open up the quarterback competition. That is never a good sign. Tennessee is just not ready to compete with Florida just yet, even if the Gators make more mistakes on offense. Florida 27-13.
Auburn vs. LSU
The biggest game of the weekend is the meeting between the two undefeated Tiger squads. Both teams are led by former Georgia Bulldogs at quarterback. JUCO transfer Nick Marshall leads Auburn into Baton Rouge. Marshall was rough around the edges in his first start against Washington State, but has shown improvement in each game. Last week, he led a last second drive that was capped off with a touchdown pass to defeat Mississippi State. For LSU, Zach Mettenberger has shown the promise he arrived in Baton Rouge with three years ago. While LSU has not faced the best competition the last two weeks, Mettenberger has thrown eight touchdowns to no interceptions in that time. He only threw 12 all of last year. Auburn will look to test the edge against the LSU defense, which has shown to be a weak spot for LSU, while LSU will try to exploit the porous secondary of Auburn. Gus Malzhan’s scheme will give Auburn a competitive chance in this game, but LSU is the better overall team. LSU 34-21.
What did you think of the Alabama Texas A&M result? Can anyone else in the conference knock off the Crimson Tide? Let us know what you think in the comments!