We got good news and bad news last weekend. The good news is that we were wrong about South Carolina beating Mizzou, so we're back in control of our destiny in the SEC East. The bad news is that, due to the transitive property of football and the fact that Indiana beat Mizzou, who beat South Carolina, who beat us, we are now the worst team in the B1G. That does not make me nervous about the Vanderbilt game this weekend, but it does make me extremely nervous about playing Mizzou in two weeks and Arkansas in three. If our defense and our passing attack don't somehow turn a corner soon, we're in for a world of hurt.
We're bringing a 4-7 record in SEC picks into the best weekend of college football so far this season. There are 6 conference contests on Saturday, and only one of them (South Carolina at Kentucky) isn't interesting for some reason or another. So, since we know better than ever to wager on Georgia football, we're left with four SEC Games of Interest: No. 6 Texas A&M (-1) at No. 12 Mississippi State, Florida (-1) at Tennessee, No. 3 Alabama (-6) at No. 11 Ole Miss, and No. 15 LSU at No. 5 Auburn (-8).
No. 6 Texas A&M (-1) at No. 12 Mississippi State (ESPN at noon ET)
I do not understand this line. Since joining the SEC, the Aggies are 12-2 in away games and have not yet lost to the Bizarro Bulldogs. The Aggies are averaging -- AVERAGING -- 51 points per game so far this season, nearly 10 points more per game than Mississippi State's offense, and the maroon mutts' pass defense hasn't looked particularly stout. The Aggies win another shoot-out.
Florida (-1) at Tennessee (SEC Network at noon ET)
Will Muschamp is getting fired this year. You know it. I know it. The American people know it. The Gators needed 3 overtimes to beat Kentucky for crying out loud. The defense that has kept Secret Agent Boom employed thus far has fallen apart. They rank 59th nationally and 83rd nationally in points per game and yards per play allowed, respectively. You know whose defense outperforms the Gators in both of those categories? The Georgia Bulldogs. Namely, the same Georgia Bulldog squad that gave up 32 points to Tennessee last Saturday. The Vols win going away at home, and Jeremy Foley starts actively soliciting résumés.
No. 3 Alabama (-6) at No. 11 Ole Miss (CBS at 3:30 p.m. ET)
I feel kind of bad for the Rebels. They've looked like a legitimate top-25 team in handling their business against 4 inferior opponents so far, but now they have to start trying to win games in the toughest division in college football. They might actually be a top-25 caliber team and still lose every game they have to play against SEC West competition... particularly since Bo Wallace has already thrown 6 picks against the patsies the Rebels have played so far. I'm hoping for an upset, but I think the Tide roll.
No. 15 LSU at No. 5 Auburn (-8) (ESPN at 7:00 p.m. ET)
This game is where the rubber meets the road. You might recall that the Bayou Bengals handed the WarPlainsTiglesMen their only loss during calendar year 2013. But this year's LSU squad just doesn't seem the same. They nearly lost to Wisconsin in week 1 but managed a comeback when the Badgers inexplicably decided to stop handing the ball off to RB Melvin Gordon (16 carries, 140 yards, 1 TD) in the second half (he got only 4 carries after the intermission), opting to let Tanner McEvoy throw the ball around instead (8/24, 50 yards, 0 TDs, 2 INTs). Then 2 weeks ago, LSU was upset by Mississippi State in Baton Rouge, giving up 302 yards on the ground. Do you know what Auburn does really, really well? RTDB. They average 5.46 yards per carry and more than 260 yards per game on the ground. I expect Auburn to cover, and I hate Auburn. They'll probably win by 3 scores.