Last Week: 8-0
Alabama at Arkansas
The last time he played in Fayetteville, John Parker Wilson had one of the best road games of his career (240 yards, 3TDs, 0 INTs). Unfortunately, the last Alabama kicker to play in Fayetteville missed three field goals (one in overtime) and an extra point (in overtime to lose the game). Of course, that was during the Mike Shula era, where such on-the-field action was not judged. If that happened in the Nick Saban era, the "f------ back-up kicker guy" would have been in after two misses or Saban would have elected to go for it on every fourth down.
As for this year's game, it will be interesting to see if Rush Probst talked to John Parker Wilson (do we have to call him John Parker all the time? Can we shorten that to JP or perhaps just John?) to help cure his recent troubles on the road (there were no actual plans for this to happen, just my theory being put out there). Barring any turnovers, I'm sure we'll see a steady diet of rushes from Alabama with the gameplan basically being don't do anything stupid and let's wait for Arkansas to play like Arkansas. After one SEC win, Alabama fans logically begin booking reservations in Atlanta.
LSU at Auburn
If you're an Auburn fan, you've got to hope your offense remembers last year's plays. While this year's offense is just awful, the good news for Auburn is that this is Andrew Hatch's, a Harvard transfer mind you, first real game. No idea how he'll react to facing a defense exponentially greater than any he's faced and doing so on the road. For that reason and the home team has won the last eight games in this series, I'm taking Auburn. And it's entirely possible Auburn could follow up a 3-2 win with a 6-3 or 7-6 win.
Florida at Tennessee
If Tennessee fails to remember that Jonathan Crompton stinks, we could see another 59-20-esque beatdown. There's no reason in the world he should throw more than 20 to 25 passes. None. Last time that happened (not counting UAB) they lost to a team that just got beat 59-0 by BYU.
How is it possible that Florida still hasn't developed a running back? Surely in the however many top classes Urban Meyer has hauled in, one would figure out how to play. Maybe it's the gimmicky offense, but they desperately need to find one. I like Florida in a relatively low-scoring game.
Georgia at Arizona State
I don't think this will be a blow-out, but I see Georgia winning easily. Lest you forget, Arizona State just lost to UNLV at home. My only question for this game is will Rudy Carpenter cry when he gets sacked for the fifth time.
Vanderbilt at Ole Miss
Huge game for both teams. If Vandy wins, they'll be in first place and 2-0 in the SEC East for the first time.......ever? For Ole Miss, this is a game they must win if they want to spend late December in Shreveport, Memphis, or Nashville (and who doesn't want to see Bossier City at that time of year?).
Bold prediction for the week: Not only does Ole Miss win, but they do so with ease. I don't think Vandy is very good, not that Ole Miss is early 90s Cowboys, but other than taking advantage of the next Chris Smelley interception, Vandy didn't really impress me. If you feature a white running back in the SEC, things can't keep going well. Throw in a relatively healthy Ole Miss defensive line (even without Hardy), Bobby Johnson's track record on the road, and a real Ole Miss offense, it has all the makings of a perfect storm cakewalk.
State at Georgia Tech
Answer me this: What were was exptected out of this year's offense when last year's offense ranked 11th in scoring, 12th in passing, 10th in rushing, and 12th in total offense in the conference? Not to mention the loss of two offensive linemen and the top wide receivers. Is anyone actually surprised State's offense is still horrible? And, how does a coordinator who directed last year's offense get a $75k raise? I feel like I'm taking crazy pills.
State's defense keeps it respectable, but Georgia Tech wins.
Wofford at South Carolina
First time in two weeks Spurrier may not throw up on the sideline.