Week 11: Georgia. The Dawgs (5-5) easily beat Idaho St., 55-7. UGA put up 269 yards passing and 181 on the ground for a total of 450; of course, it was 41-0 at the half and much like Auburn no one of consequence played in the second half. Richt and the Bulldogs are lying in the weeds waiting for Auburn, but the Tigers know a win here sends us to Atlanta which is the true goal for our season. I think our boys will be ready, and if Nick Fairley gets his hands on Aaron Murray this game may be over quick.
Worry Level: This has been a very bad Georgia team, but they are still very dangerous.
Week 12: Alabama. The tide (7-2) really struggled against a tough LSU defense and the only time that offense looked good was in the 2 minute drill McElroy ran when they were down by 10. The Bayou Bengals pulled off the mild upset in red stick 24-21. This bama team is starting to look incredibly beatable to my eyes. We can stop their run, but Captain Screen Pass still makes me nervous since that has been the weakness of our defense this year. And since I mentioned Fairley taking out QBs, bama might actually be better off if McElroy went down too hard.
Worry Level: Down — Bama fans are already getting their excuses ready. That’s always a good sign.
SEC Championship Game? My money is still on Florida; they play South Carolina this week in Gainesville and I think they’ll handle the Gamecocks. A 9-3 Florida team would be a nice SEC championship matchup.
THE CONQUERED (AND THE CONQUERORS)
Arkansas St. beat MTSU 51-24 Saturday to improve to 4-5, with two very winnable games left on the schedule and a probable loss at Navy, the Red Wolves may be bowl eligible.
Mississippi State (7-2) had the week off to get ready for an Alabama team who is suddenly nervous. They then host Arkansas and go to Ole Miss. 8-4 is likely, but they could also finish 9-3. 10-2 seems unlikely.
Clemson won a nailbiter against NC State 14-13 Saturday in a game where Kyle Parker was briefly benched. The Tigers are 5-4, but with trips to FSU and a game against South Carolina, they may finish 6-6.
South Carolina got manhandled by Arkansas 41-20 and it wasn’t as close as the score indicates. Garcia couldn’t get it going and threw two picks. SC is 6-3, but with games at Florida this weekend and at Clemson, they could be looking at 8-4, or even 7-5.
Louisiana Monroe may have ruined their chances at a bowl game with their upset OT loss at Florida International 42-35. The Warhawks are 4-5 with two winnable games and a trip to Baton Rouge left on the schedule.
Kentucky struggled to beat Charleston Southern 49-21; this game was tied with 6 minutes to go in the first half and CSU is not a good FCS team (2-7). UK is 5-5 with Vandy and Tennessee left. I know they’ll go to a bowl game, but I think they win them both and finish 7-5.
Arkansas came out firing in Columbia and beat the Gamecocks 41-20. Mallett threw for 300 yards, but the tailback Davis got it done on the ground with 3TDs. The hogs are 7-2 and if they get through Starkville alive will be looking to go 10-2 with a home win against LSU.
LSU won 24-21 and everyone knows what the Mad Hatter did Saturday in Baton Rouge.
But did you know he admitted to eating the grass? “The grass in Tiger Stadium tastes best. The gift my team gave me today was allowing me to coach them and playing with passion and great effort.” If anyone still defends Les Miles sanity at this point, it’s time they question their own. LSU still thinks they can play for the National Title, but Auburn would have to lose two for them to have any hopes. Not likely. Sitting at 8-1 they have La Mo, Ole Miss, and a road game against Arkansas. An 11-1 season is possible but I think the Hogs get them.
Ole Miss had a rough time with Louisiana-Lafayette this weekend. It was 30-21 at the half. People were nervous. But Ole Miss shut them out in the second half and won 43-21. The Akbar Bears are 4-5 and staring down the 4-8 barrel with trips to Knoxville and Baton Rouge and hosting Miss State at the end of the season. They may get Tennessee, but Mississippi isn’t going to a bowl this year.
THE OVERALL PICTURE
Take another breath Auburn fans – with the Tide’s loss to LSU we can lock up a trip to Atlanta and a BCS bowl with a win this weekend. Let’s get 11 this weekend and walk into Tuscaloosa loose and strong for the Iron Bowl. It’s a great day to be an Auburn Tiger.
Oh… and do you wonder why Auburn has such a huge lead in the computer rankings? Here are the records of the teams the nation’s four undefeated teams have beaten:
Auburn 55-36 (3 have losing records)
TCU 44-50 (5 have losing records)
Boise 32-41 (4 have losing records)
Oregon 32-50 (7 have losing records)
So if you guys are on the internet bashing the Non-AQ teams… maybe you should actually be bashing Oregon’s schedule?