by Steve Geller, firstname.lastname@example.org,posted Nov 3 2012 11:32AM
For the first time in the history of the BCS rankings, five teams in the top ten are from the same conference...the BEST conference. The SEC owns the bulk of the top 9 spots with Alabama, LSU, Georgia, Florida and South Carolina. Believe it or not we enter the last month of the regular season now.
Time to go Inside the SEC...
Alabama (8-0) at LSU (6-1)
A rematch of last year's National Championship game is on tap in Baton Rouge today, as the top-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide put an undefeated season in serious jeopardy against the fifth-ranked LSU Tigers in a key SEC West battle.
Florida has to be disappointed in that turnover-laden game that slipped away against Georgia, and they will be hungry to make a statement against Missouri. The Tiger team is largely outmatched for playing in the SEC. The Gators front on both sides of the ball should dominate Mizzou, which will allow Florida’s run game to take over and grind out a win. The Tigers’ offense won’t be able to muster for four quarters against the attacking style of the Gators’ chomp and will wilt under the heat in the second half.
Texas A&M (6-2) at Mississippi State (7-1)
It will be interesting to see how the Bulldogs bounce back from getting smoked in Tuscaloosa last week, especially given the offensive firepower Texas A&M is bringing to the table. Mississippi State has the correct team makeup to make life hard for Aggies (good secondary, good running game, able quarterback), but when A&M is playing well... the Aggies are almost impossible to stop. They destroyed Auburn last week and likely sealed Gene Chizik’s fate for good; and a win here would put the Aggies in a position to compete for second place in the SEC West - depending on what happens to LSU and Alabama.
Vanderbilt (4-4) at Kentucky (1-8)
Kentucky appeared to make strides against Georgia two weeks ago, but gave it all back in a listless performance against Missouri last Saturday. Vanderbilt, meanwhile, is 4-4 and needs to win this game if it has any shot at bowl eligibility. In the coming weeks, the Commodores must face a Tennessee offense they can’t keep pace with a much-improved Ole Miss team and Wake Forest. Only Wake looks plausible as a Vandy win right now, so it’s imperative that the Commodores dispatch with the Wildcats. Kentucky is 1-8 and battling Auburn for the title of worst team in the SEC. Kentucky also hasn’t had an off-week yet and appears to be tired.
Troy (4-4) at Tennessee (3-5)
Troy might have been looking ahead to this game, because the Trojans got dumped by Florida Atlantic last week. Still, Tennessee had better watch out, as Troy gave Mississippi State its toughest game of the year until Alabama kenneled the Bulldogs. If the Vols manage to lose this game, Derek Dooley might not make it out of the stadium without someone setting fire to his orange pants.
New Mexico State (1-7) at Auburn (1-7)
The question is, will either team really show up for this one with absolutely nothing going right and nothing to play for? New Mexico State opened its season with a win over Sacramento State ... and the good news ended there. This is a bad offensive football team that doesn’t play very good defense either. However, the same could be said of Auburn. These two teams are a combined 2-14 at the moment, but Auburn should still win this game by three scores. If they don’t, it will show just how far the Tiger program has fallen. If Auburn happens to actually lose this game, it would go down as one of the most embarrassing moments for any SEC program...EVER.
Tulsa (7-1) at Arkansas (3-5)
Fortunately for Arkansas, Tulsa lost its only game against a like-or-better opponent, Iowa State. The rest of the Golden Hurricane schedule has been filled with the dregs of Division-IA - and below. Arkansas would have rolled in this game had it found a way to beat Ole Miss last week. Now, the mindset of the Razorbacks is in question again. The Hogs could yet make a bowl game, but it won’t without a win in this game. Cautiously, I’ll pick the Razorbacks here.
Ole Miss (5-3) at Georgia (7-1)
Don’t look now, but Ole Miss is one win away from bowl eligibility and could be on track to pull the shocker of the week. Georgia lived up to potential last week in its win over Florida, and while the Bulldogs should defeat the Rebels, this is just the kind of game that has tripped up Mark Richt’s teams over the years. Ole Miss has an offense that causes problems for undisciplined defenses, and Georgia is frequently troubled with discipline issues on both sides of the ball. Fans of offense will probably like this game.