I’m back from traveling the seas and I’m back with a vengeance. Had I only known that last week I would have missed prime time to talk about the shortcomings of Kansas State, I might have scheduled vacation time for another week. Just kidding. I’ll take vacation any day.
I did no “Weekend Preview” as I was not back until Saturday, so this week’s Weekend Recap is going to have a lot of freedom to it. With that in mind I’ll do my best to cover everything pertinent to the SEC (as always) and may even dive into some outside topics.
I actually caught a portion of the LSU / Arkansas game on the cruise ship and it was nothing short of ugly. This year’s LSU team seems to capture the “ugly” that I expected with an inconsistent offense inheriting a new QB and a team missing a spark-plug like Tryann Mathieu. But, while I anticipated ugly, I am surprised at how well LSU has actually played – as far as wins and losses are concerned. Their 10-2 record and 7th place ranking with losses only to #2 Alabama and #4 Florida seems to belie what I actually see on the field. Nonetheless, that’s where the Tigers are. On the other hand Arkansas is losing ugly.
Congrats to Derek Dooley on his big SEC win over Kentucky! I knew Tennessee would steal one at some point. Oh. I’ve just read that Dooley was fired while I was gone. Well congrats to Jim Chaney – Tennessee’s interim coach on a 1-0 SEC season. I’m not sure I’d be pushing for Gruden if I was a Vol fan. What has he done in the SEC? Chaney is batting 1.000.
Texas A&M beat the crap out of Missouri and showed just how wide the gap between the SEC’s “new” guys really is. When you go up 42-0 over a team like Missouri it shows a lot. Well maybe not. But still, it was an impressive win by the Aggies who closed out their first SEC season with a 6-2 conference record. Missouri mirrored that with a 2-6 showing – more on that later today.
At around 4:30 on Saturday everyone on the Twitter machine and the Facebooker was blowing up about Alabama’s route of Auburn. Don’t get me wrong: I don’t want to disrespect Alabama or otherwise anger the Saban during the week my beloved Bulldogs take on the Tide. But since when does a rout of Auburn mean anything? Auburn is so bad they just fired the coach that won them a National Championship two years ago. How bad is Auburn? I’ll also recap that later today for giggles.
Vanderbilt beat Wake Forest55-21 which would be completely un-noteworthy except for the fact that it supports what I told DadYouCrazy last night: I think Vanderbilt and Notre Dame would be a heck of a game. The Irish beat Wake Forest (in South Bend) 38-0. Vandy’s waxing game at home for Wake.
Remember when people thought Mississippi State was good following their dominating 7-0 start against an FCS school, three Sun Belt opponents three SEC opponents who combined to win one conference game this year? As it turns out it’s a lot easier to run the table against the Jackson States and South Alabamas of the world than it is against Alabama, Texas A&M and LSU. And apparently Ole Miss. Because the Ole Miss beat the tar out of Mississippi State and became Bowl Eligible in the process. A sincere congratulations to the Rebels for being competitive this year (and I don’t mean that in a belittling way, it’s a huge improvement) and I look forward to a great showing by Hugh Freeze’s squad in a bowl. As for Mississippi State, remember when you were ranked 11th in the BCS on October 21st? No? Me neither.
The SEC absolutely pounded the ACC this weekend. In the worst possible ways. Coming into the weekend Florida State was widely regarded as the ACC’s best team and some (I’m looking at you, Herbstreit. I know you read this.) felt the Seminoles were ranked entirely too low at 10th in the BCS. Well Florida, the second best team from the SEC East traveled to Tallahassee and put a whoopin on Florida State. How bad is the ACC? Florida was averaging just over 25 points per game in SEC play. The Gators scored 24 points against FSU in the fourth quarter alone!
Meanwhile South Carolina (the sixth best team in the SEC) took on Clemson– who immediately following FSU’s loss was the ACC’s best team. South Carolina played without their best player who is out for the next 12-18 months. It didn’t matter. The Gamecocks held an “explosive” ACC team with a lot of “speed” to 28 points below their season scoring average. The Cocks won 27-17.
And of course, the mighty Georgia Bulldogs went to town on the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets and proved that last weeks’ (relatively) more contested matchup with Georgia Southern was in fact the State Championship. Frankly, the Tech game doesn’t mean much to me as it’s typically an all-but-guaranteed win, even if in closer fashion than should be expected. But, I do get a kick out of GT fans’ bitterness and hatred for Georgia after the games.
One Georgia Tech fan typified the “I’d rather see Georgia lose than Georgia Tech win” persona that I’ve spoken of before saying that, “If Alabama beats Georgia next week then all will be right in the world.” I’m sorry Facebook friend, but if Georgia loses to the eventual National Championship the wrong that was a 42-3 loss to Georgia’s starters (and a 42-10 final score) will still not be righted. That’s not how football works. If Georgia Tech had scored 43 points on Saturday, then for you, a Georgia Tech fan, all would have been right in the football world.
Another seemed to believe that total yards should be the measuring stick for performance saying, “Tech outgained GA 426-379. A few breaks away from being right in it.” That’s an interesting perspective (that I hope was said sarcastically, but I doubt was) from a team who only managed a single field goal against Georgia’s starting defense. With Tech trailing 42-3 with starters in, I’d say Tech was at least 13 “breaks” away from keeping it close – assuming each of those “breaks” was a field goal.
Here’s some advice Tech fans: stop caring about the game itself. Georgia fans have.
With all of those SEC over ACC tail-kickings it’s no surprise that you can get a ticket to see the aforementioned Georgia Tech team (who at 6-6 will either clinch a BCS Bowl with a win or lose Bowl Eligibility with a loss) compete in the ACC Championship for as little as $4.50 courtesy of StubHub. The same site is asking for $295 to see Georgia take on Alabama.
With the BCS top nine remaining unchanged and only South Carolina sneaking into the top 10 thanks to losses by FSU and Clemson there isn’t much else to talk about other than Notre Dame. How overrated is this team? My goodness! It’s not a sign that your team (Notre Dame) is good when the two teams who might face you in the National Championship (Georgia and Alabama) are rooting like hell for you to win-out and be their final opponent. Georgia and Alabama players alike were rooting for the Irish on Twitter Saturday. Nobody is scared of the Fighting Irish.
But to hear the final minutes of the game Saturday you would think Notre Dame was in the National Championship playing an undefeated USC team. In reality Notre Dame beat a five-loss Trojan team playing a freshman backup at quarterback by nine points after the Trojans couldn’t punch the ball in on what seemed like 90 plays inside the five yard line. Wow.
This is obviously a big week for College Football fans, especially my fellow Bulldogs. Here are some things you can look forward to:
- Today: This post as well as a very brief look at the SEC’s coaching vacancies
- Tuesday: Another look at Manti Te’o relative to some Georgia stars, an update on the DudeYouCrazy scoring coefficients
- Wednesday: Breaking down Heisman Candidates (literally, breaking them down) and a look at Alabama’s offense relative to Georgia defense
- Thursday: Weekend Preview and a look at Alabama’s defense relative to Georgia’s offense
- Friday: Full Georgia/Alabama Preview
- Saturday: Live updates and Live tweeting from the DudeYouCrazy tailgate and from the game.
- Sunday: Cries of Victory or of Defeat
Those items are guaranteed plus much, much more.
That’s all I got/