In & around SEC football


Alabama Week 13 Review

The Crimson Tide defeated Western Carolina, 48-14, in a tune-up game for this week’s Iron Bowl. Alabama started off a little sluggish but quickly regrouped and dominated the game. Blake Sims threw for 222 yards and two scores, while receiver Chris Black caught six passes for 101 yards. The Tide improved to 10-1 overall. Under Nick Saban, Alabama has won at least 10 games in seven consecutive seasons. Alabama welcomes in-state rival Auburn to Bryant-Denny Stadium this Saturday (Nov. 29) for the Iron Bowl. 

Auburn Week 13 Review

Despite a 31-7 win over Samford, Auburn’s offensive woes continued. The Tigers only gained 386 yards, and it took nearly two quarters for the offense to finally get going. The Bulldogs did a solid job of containing Auburn quarterback Nick Marshall, as the senior quarterback had his worst rushing performance as an Auburn Tiger. Auburn has struggled on offense for two straight weeks and face one of the best defenses in college football in Tuscaloosa this Saturday. The Tigers improved to 8-3 overall with the victory over Samford. 

SEC Rankings

1. Alabama (10-1, 6-1)

2. Mississippi State (10-1, 6-1)

3. Georgia (9-2, 6-2)

4. Auburn (8-3, 4-3)

5. Missouri (9-2, 6-1)

6. Texas A&M (7-4, 3-4)

7. Arkansas (6-5, 2-5)

8. LSU (7-4, 3-4)

9. Ole Miss (8-3, 4-3)

10. South Carolina (6-5, 3-5)

11. Florida (6-4, 4-4)

12. Tennessee (5-6, 2-5)

13. Kentucky (5-6, 2-6)

14. Vanderbilt (3-8, 0-7)

Week 14 Previews and Predictions 

Week 13: 8-0; Season: 85-16

Thursday, November 27

LSU at Texas A&M (+3). Both the Aggies and Tigers enter the regular season finale at 7-4 overall and 3-4 in conference play. Texas A&M hasn’t won a home SEC game this year, and they’ve struggled in College Station under Kevin Sumlin. LSU easily handled the Aggies a season ago in Baton Rouge, but this year’s contest should be much closer. LSU struggles to score, but is great defensively. Texas A&M can score but can’t stop anyone. Prediction: LSU 24, Texas A&M 20. 

Friday, November 28

Arkansas at Missouri (+2). Arkansas has finally turned the corner under head coach Bret Bielema, as the Razorbacks beat two ranked conference foes by a combined score of 47-0 over the past two weeks. They now are bowl eligible and have a chance to really help out Georgia in the SEC East. If the Hogs knock off Missouri, Georgia wins the East. If Missouri wins, then the Tigers will make their second consecutive trip to Atlanta. Prediction: Arkansas 28, Missouri 24.

Saturday, November 29

Kentucky at Louisville (-13). Earlier in the season, Kentucky was 5-1, and bowl eligibility almost seemed like a sure thing. However, the Wildcats have dropped five straight games, and the last two losses were blowouts. A win over in-state rival Louisville would certainly make amends for recent losses. Prediction: Kentucky 38, Louisville 35. 

South Carolina at Clemson (-4.5). It’s been a disappointing season for the Gamecocks, but they do have a chance to end the regular season on a three-game winning streak. Steve Spurrier’s squad has won five straight games against Dabo Swinney and the Tigers. Prediction: South Carolina 34, Clemson 31. 

Georgia Tech at Georgia (-13). The Bulldogs will know their fate for the SEC title game by the time they kick off against the Yellow Jackets. Georgia Tech’s triple option attack can be tough to defend, but Mark Richt has enjoyed numerous wins over the Yellow Jackets during his tenure in Athens. Prediction: Georgia 31, Georgia Tech 21. 

Mississippi State at Ole Miss (+2). Mississippi State might not win the SEC West but the Bulldogs still have a chance to make the playoffs. Ole Miss started off the season very promising but the Rebels have fallen apart down the stretch. MSU probably needs to win by double digits, because this will be the last opportunity to impress the playoff committee. Prediction: Mississippi State 31, Ole Miss 10. 

Florida at Florida State (-7.5). In Will Muschamp’s last game as head coach for Florida, the Gators get an opportunity to knock off a team that has won 27 straight games. Florida State is trying to repeat as national champions but narrowly defeated just about every team on their schedule this season. The Gator defense can limit the Seminoles but the Gainesville squad is too inept on offense to take down undefeated Florida State. Prediction: Florida State 23, Florida 17. 

Tennessee at Vanderbilt (+17). Tennessee just needs one win to reach a bowl game. Vanderbilt needs a win to avoid going winless in SEC play. Prediction: Tennessee 41, Vanderbilt 17.

Game of the Week

Auburn at Alabama (-9.5). A year after Auburn’s infamous Kick Six won the Iron Bowl and sent the Tigers to the SEC championship, Alabama is poised to exact revenge. Like last year, Alabama is in position to win the SEC West. Unlike last year, Auburn is not. The Tigers have had a disappointing season given their preseason expectations, and have stumbled down the stretch. On the other hand, Alabama is playing its best football of the year. The Crimson Tide’s defense is playing at an elite level, and while the offense still occasionally sputters, it features enough elite playmakers to create problems for opposing defenses. The Tigers will have no answer for Amari Cooper, and when plays break down in the passing game, Blake Sims’ mobility will be a major issue for the Auburn defense. Auburn still has an explosive offense but has been held in check the last few games. Unless Auburn has a fast start and takes care of the football, Alabama should avenge last year’s heartbreaking loss by dominating the struggling Tigers. Prediction: Alabama 41, Auburn 13.

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