In & around the SEC - Week 3

By Cole FrederickBy Cole Frederick

 Alabama Week 3 recap

The Crimson Tide defeated Texas A&M, 49-42, in a shootout in College Station last Saturday. Alabama’s defense had no answer for Aggie quarterback Johnny Manziel, but Texas A&M had no answer for the physicality of the Alabama offense. The Crimson Tide fell behind 14-0 in the first quarter but responded by scoring 35 straight points. The Aggies made a slight comeback and got the game within a touchdown, but their defense could not keep Ala-bama off the field. The Crimson Tide faces Colorado State this Saturday (Sept. 21) in their home opener.

Auburn Week 3 recap

Gus Malzahn’s first SEC game ended in dramatic fashion. The Tigers trailed Mississippi State 20-17 with less than two minutes remaining in the game and had the ball on their own 2-yard line. Quarterback Nick Marshall rapidly led the Tigers down the field, eventually connecting with C.J. Uzomah for the winning score with 10 seconds left in the game. The win snapped Auburn’s 10-game SEC losing streak. The Tigers travel to Baton Rouge this weekend to take on LSU.

SEC Rankings
    1. Alabama (2-0, 1-0)
    2. LSU (3-0, 0-0)
    3. Georgia (1-1, 1-0)
    4. Texas A&M (2-1, 0-1)
    5. South Carolina (2-1, 1-1)
    6. Ole Miss (3-0, 1-0)
    7. Auburn (3-0, 1-0)
    8. Florida (1-1, 0-0)
    9. Vanderbilt (1-2, 0-2)
    10. Missouri (2-0, 0-0)
    11. Tennessee (2-1, 0-0)
    12. Mississippi State (1-2, 0-1)
    13. Arkansas (3-0, 0-0)
    14. Kentucky (1-2, 0-0)

Week 4 Previews and Predictions
(Week 3: 7-1; Season: 28-5)

Game of the Week

Auburn at LSU (-17.5). Both Tiger squads enter this weekend 3-0 on the year, and each team has gotten better each week thus far. Auburn quarterback Nick Marshall is making his first road start of his career. Auburn has not won in Baton Rouge since Tommy Tuberville’s first year on the Plains in 1999. LSU is better both offensively and defensively than Auburn, and the Bayou Bengals are tough to beat in a night game in Baton Rouge. Prediction: LSU 41, Auburn 17.

Vanderbilt at Massachusetts (-32). The Commodores are coming off of a loss to SEC East rival South Carolina, dropping Vandy to 1-2 overall and 0-2 in league play. Fortunately for the ‘Dores, they face a UMass team that is one of the worst in the country. Look for James Franklin’s team to get back on track this weekend. Prediction: Vanderbilt 45, UMass 6.

North Texas at Georgia (-32.5). After playing Clemson and South Carolina to start the season, Georgia received a much-needed bye last week. The Bulldogs return to the gridiron this Saturday against North Texas, which should be an easy win before the Dawgs host LSU next weekend. Prediction: Georgia 59, North Texas 13.

Tennessee at Florida (-17). Tennessee was dominated by Oregon last weekend, 59-14. After falling behind early, the Ducks scored 59 unanswered points. The Gators had an off week after losing to Miami but have beaten the Volunteers eight consecutive times. Will Muschamp’s team should win again on Saturday. Prediction: Florida 27, Te-nnessee 16.

Arkansas at Rutgers (-1). The Razorbacks are off to a 3-0 start in Bret Bielema’s first season as head coach, although their opponents have not been particularly strong. The Scarlet Knights should provide a challenge in the Hogs’ first road game this year. Prediction: Rutgers 26, Arkansas 17.

SMU at Texas A&M (-28.5). The Aggies suffered a tough home loss against Alabama last Saturday despite a Heisman-worthy performance by quarterback Johnny Manziel. A&M is still in the national championship picture, but Kevin Sumlin’s team must run the table and hope for some luck along the way. The Aggies should not have a problem against the Mustangs this weekend. Prediction: Texas A&M 55, SMU 20.

Colorado State at Alabama (-40). Former Alabama offensive coordinator Jim McElwain re-turns to Tuscaloosa this weekend as head coach of Colorado State to take on the Crimson Tide. Alabama is undefeated in its home openers under head coach Nick Saban, and the Rams should not be a challenge for the top-ranked Crimson Tide on Saturday. Prediction: Alabama 48, Colorado State 10.

Troy at Mississippi State (-14.5). The Bulldogs narrowly lost on the road to Auburn last weekend and must regroup quickly to prevent being upset by the Trojans. Troy has one of the most efficient offenses in the nation, and if Dan Mullen were to lose this game, he might find himself on the hot seat. Prediction: Mississippi State 41, Troy 33.

Missouri at Indiana (+3). Both the Tigers and Hoosiers feature offenses that can put points on the board, and neither team is very strong defensively. This game has all the makings of a shootout. For Mi-ssouri head coach Gary Pinkel, this game might be a must-win. After failing to reach a bowl game last season, the Tigers desperately need a turnaround year, or they might be searching for a new coach in December. Prediction: Missouri 45, Indiana 41.

 
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