I think it’s safe to say at this point that the difference between the SEC East and SEC West is as far and wide as the gap between LSU-Alabama and the rest of the college football nation. In spite of South Carolina’s win, the East teams just aren’t as physical as the teams in the West.
South Carolina 14, Mississippi State 12
LSU 38, Tennessee 7
Alabama 52, Ole Miss 7
Auburn 17, Florida 6
Georgia 33, Vanderbilt 28
It should be no surprise that LSU and Alabama came out of the weekend ranked #1 and #2 respectively in the first BCS rankings. Both teams have dominated their schedule and Saturday was just another example of how far they are above other teams in the league. Both came out to slow starts but turned on the jets to score blowout wins. LSU gets Auburn at home this week while Alabama hosts Tennessee. Then both get a week off to prepare for what is shaping up to be the college football game of the year November 5.
South Carolina came up with just enough to get by Mississippi State Saturday but the real story is the season-ending knee injury to RB Marcus Lattimore. The Gamecocks get a much needed bye week before consecutive games at Tennessee and Arkansas, then end the conference schedule with Florida at home. S. Carolina still needs to run the table to secure a second SEC East championship.
Florida will not be in that hunt after sustaining a third conference loss by falling to Auburn 17-6. Injuries and the adjustment of Urban Meyer’s spread personnel to a more pro-style offense are largely to blame, but I’m also going to throw some of that on the inexperience at head coach. All I can say about Auburn is that it continues to make something out of nothing to win these games, and that is a testament to just how good a head coach Gene Chizik really is. Every time I think Auburn is about to fold, it comes back with a strong game and a win. No one, including me, thought Auburn would get out of October with more than one win. Now the team will at least have three wins and has a shot at four. LSU better not take a nap this week.
Finally, Georgia held on to win at Vanderbilt, but the Bulldogs’ defensive coordinator decided to cast aspersions at the Commodores’ head coach, James Franklin. Georgia has often played with little to no class the past few years, so this isn’t surprising. But against Vanderbilt? Actually, I take my hat off to James Franklin, who keeps reiterating that the days of laying down and taking it at Vandy are over and not coming back. It also says a lot about how paper thin Georgia is to barely get by in that game and still have a shot at the East crown if the team can beat Florida, Kentucky, and Auburn and get some help from the rest of the conference to take out South Carolina.
Check back later this week for week eight previews and predictions.