Sunday, September 16, 2007

SEC Roundup - Week Three

Since Pittman was at a wedding yesterday, I took some time out to watch all of the SEC games so I could do the roundup. No need to thank me.

Mississippi State 19, Auburn 14
It's hard to imagine a worse football game. State played three different QB's who combined for the cover-your-eyes awful line of 5/18 for 41 yards. Henig led the way with SIXTEEN yards passing. And they won. Auburn is a total mess right now. They are a better team than State, but five turnovers to zero is usually the kiss of death. I hate Auburn, so this was pretty damn enjoyable game.

Florida 59, Tennessee 20
Florida used this as a statement game. Remember how good we thought Cal looked against UT? Well, Florida upped the ante. The Gators still had the starters in midway through the fourth quarter as they tried to get a few extra votes in the polls. It worked. This is exactly why you run up the score, people. It impresses voters. This game was 28-20 with 5:30 left in the third. Then the Gators recovered a fumble for a TD and the onslaught began. 31 points in the final 20 minutes. Tebow, by the way, looks really good. He can still run, but he has shown accuracy and touch he didn't get to show last year. They are a legit title contender. As for the Vols... they simply cannot run the football. You won't beat good teams if you can't rush at least a little bit.

Vandy 31, Ole Miss 17
The wrong guy with the hyphenated game dominated the rushing attack. Green-Ellis went for 66 yards on 21 carries, which is fairly pedestrian. Jackson-Garrison, meanwhile, ripped off 119 yards and 3 TDs off 23 carries for the Commodores. Vandy has made a recent habit of flirting with a winning season, but this is the kind of performance that gets you there. Then again, it's just Ole Miss.

Georgia 45, Western Carolina 16
South Carolina 38, South Carolina St 3

Two SEC schools beat up on really bad teams who collected a large paycheck for their time. Who cares?

Alabama 41, Arkansas 38
I'm sure Pittman will have much more to say about this game, but let's just say Saban avoided a choke of truly epic proportions. Instead, Nutt gets the goat tag, as the entire football nation wonders why he didn't run the ball to protect the lead. OK, McFadden was out with cramps, but I hear this Felix Jones guy is pretty good. The two backs absolutely tore through Bama's defense, but with the game on the line, Nutt relied on his passing game short his best receiver. I'm baffled. It wasn't just that Bama choked on a 21-point lead, it was how quickly they coughed it up. Bama went up by 21 with 5:15 left in the 3rd quarter. With 12:05 left in the fourth, the game was tied. At 8:08, the Hogs had the lead. 28 points in 12 minutes of football? That can't happen. It's a good win for Bama and that last drive was super clutch by John Parker Wilson, even if he did get bailed out on the pass interference call in the end zone. I'm certainly not ready to say "Bama is back" off of this game, particularly given that the Razorbacks are in disarray right now. But it is a big win. We'll have a real prognosis after Bama plays Georgia.

Kentucky 40, Louisville 34
Brian Brohm may not even be the best quarterback in Kentucky. Andre Woodson was simply great against his cross-state rivals. I've seen better lines than 30/44 for 275 yards and 4 TDs, but what made the game so great was how calm he looked in the pocket. During that last drive, Woodson took his time and almost looked bored bringing his team down the field. He converted a fourth down on a short pass in the flat, he wasn't afraid to use the middle of the field, and he even threw in some run plays. Woodson had less than two minutes to drive the field, and he never hurried the play. He let it come to him. And he hit the game winning TD right after one of his lineman stupidly got a 15-yard unsportsmanlike penalty. 2nd and 25... and I was sure UK was going to score. But, I was having huge flashbacks to our Bluegrass Miracle as Brohm chucked the ball downfield in the last three plays. Knock it down, for godsakes. UK's defense is mediocre and its special teams were terrible. But Woodson was awesome. That was enough for the upset.


Richard Pittman said...

I disagree about MSU and Auburn. MSU won that game because they're a better team right now. Sure, they can't pass worth a damn, but they're a decent running team with a solid defense. Auburn is just horrid right now, and have been from the opening game. They can't block anyone. They can't pass the ball. They can only run sporadically. Their defense is good but not great. On balance, I think MSU is the better team at this point in time. Not by much, but by a little. They earned that win.

As for Bama, I didn't watch any of the game because I was on the road and out of range of Bama radio stations. I really expected Bama to be overmatched by Arkansas, and that is clearly not the case. Saban may have avoided a devastating choke job, but his team proved it's among the better teams in the conference (which is down this year, IMO).

I saw a lot of Louisville vs. Kentucky on replay this morning. It was a good game, and Woodson is awesome. I haven't seen Matt Ryan play extensively, but if I was forced to pick QBs among the ones I've seen in college right now, I'd pick Woodson in a heartbeat.

Poseur said...

Matt Ryan is the most unappreciated QB in NCAA. Really, what does BC have to do to get some credit? No one can play the disrespect card more than BC right now. They have three CONFERENCE wins, one against the defending ACC champ and one against the ACC title favorite.

Auburn isn't good, but Miss State really is a bad team right now. They won by getting a 5-0 turnover advantage. Auburn gave them this win, and State almost wasn't good enough to take it.

Richard Pittman said...

But that's been part of Auburn's problem this year. They're a turnover machine. Their offensive line can't block, so their QBs get pressured. Their QBs get pressured and make bad throws. Bad throws get intercepted.

Even when they make good throws, they don't have the receivers to do anything with them. Yesterday's first interception was on a good throw to the tight end. The tight end just botched it and knocked the ball up in the air where it was intercepted. The other ones were on bad throws by QBs under pressure.

uberschuck said...

This argument about the quality of MSU and Auburn is a distraction from the main point--Auburn Schadenfreude. The more we hate them, the better we feel when they suffer.

Down with USC (both of them)!