In & around the SEC – Week 3

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Auburn Week 2 recap

The Tigers improved to 2-0 overall after defeating Arkansas State, 38-9, last Saturday in Jordan-Hare Stadium. The Red Wolves gained over 400 yards but the Tigers made several crucial fourth down stops. Auburn was led offensively by running backs Tre Mason, Cameron Artis-Payne and Corey Grant, as well as quarterback Nick Marshall. The Tigers mustered over 300 rushing yards and Marshall threw for nearly 150 yards and two touchdowns. Auburn hosts Mississippi State on Saturday (Sept. 14).

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

Week 3 Previews and Predictions
(Week 2: 9-3; Season: 21-4)

Game of the Week

Alabama at Texas A&M (+8). This game has been talked about for several months since Johnny Manziel and the Aggies stormed into Bryant-Denny Stadium last fall and defeated the Crimson Tide. The spotlight has been on Manziel since that game, for reasons both good and bad. Alabama typically is very good in “revenge” games under Nick Saban, and the Tide had an extra week to prepare for the Aggies. Texas A&M has the firepower offensively to keep the game close, but the Aggies’ defense might turn out to be the problem against Alabama. Prediction: Alabama 41, Texas A&M 24.

Louisville at Kentucky (+14). Mark Stoops picked up his first win as Wildcat head coach last Saturday over Miami (Ohio). The Wildcats jumped out to an early lead on the Redhawks and never looked back. Kentucky hosts archrival Louisville this Saturday in Lexington. Led by standout quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, the Cardinals are one of the best teams in the country. Former Auburn running back Michael Dyer is also a member of the Cardinals. Prediction: Louisville 45, Kentucky 20.

Southern Mississippi at Arkansas (-22). The Razorbacks are 2-0 but were nearly upset by Samford last Saturday. Arkansas was trailing late in the second half at 21-17, but they eventually pulled away for a 31-21 victory. This week the Hogs face a Southern Miss team that has not won a game in nearly two years. Prediction: Arkansas 38, Southern Miss 24.

Tennessee at Oregon (-27.5). The Volunteers were able to capitalize on numerous Western Kentucky turnovers in a 52-20 win over the Hilltoppers. This weekend, Butch Jones and the Vols travel to Eugene, Ore., to take on the Ducks. Both teams have been very productive on offense, and Tennessee should be able to put up some points. Oregon, however, is arguably the best offensive team in the nation and the Vols are playing in a very hostile environment. Prediction: Oregon 52, Tennessee 24.

Kent State at LSU (-37). The Tigers handled an overmatched UAB team last weekend to improve to 2-0 on the season. LSU faces Kent State on Saturday in what should be the Tigers final tune-up before conference play starts next week. Prediction: LSU 45, Kent State 13.

Vanderbilt at South Carolina (-13.5). The Gamecocks lost their conference opener to Georgia last weekend, while Vanderbilt easily defeated Austin Peay. Both teams are 0-1 in conference play, so this game is a must-win for both squads if they want to stay in the race to win the East Division. South Carolina has much more talent on both sides of the ball but the Commodores should provide an interesting challenge to the Gamecocks. Prediction: South Carolina 37, Vanderbilt 20.

Mississippi State at Auburn (-6). The Bulldogs and Tigers square off this weekend in Auburn, and this game will be a huge test for both teams. Mississippi State defeated Alcorn State last weekend to improve to 1-1, while Auburn eased past Arkansas State to improve to 2-0. The Bulldogs defeated Auburn last year in Starkville, and the Tigers will be looking for revenge this weekend in Jordan-Hare Stadium. Prediction: Auburn 27, Mississippi State 17.

Ole Miss at Texas (-2.5). In one of the bigger matchups in the country this weekend, Ole Miss travels to Austin to take on the Texas Longhorns. The Rebels defeated Southeast Missouri State last weekend, while Texas was embarrassed by BYU. The Longhorns gave up nearly 600 rushing yards to the Cougars, which led to defensive coordinator Manny Diaz being fired. The Rebels are ranked for the first time in nearly four years, and if they beat Texas on Saturday, they might climb even further in the polls. Prediction: Texas 41, Ole Miss 34.

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