Unless you count the barbed nipples of Gameday ubiqui-tante Erin Andrews on a breezy Florida evening, last weekends action lacked significant sex-appeal. The thriller in Nashville last Thursday was a treat, but the rest of the league was business as usual: hit hard, study harder. Still, it seems that the league avoided any devastating injuries and/or altercations in or outside of the proverbial ‘club’.
Vanderbilt (W, 24-17 S. Carolina): we often lampoon Vandy for their atypical adherence to academics. They’re smart, thus less athletic, yada yada, trite stereotype, yada. But the ‘Dores utilized those respectable SAT scoring brains and flexed their mental muscle on a South Carolina team far superior in talent and number of blown assignments. Unable to run the ball and banged up on defense, the Dores proved resiliant and took advantage of the absent minded Gamecocks, proving once again, that every team in the SEC is capable of going to a bowl game. And tune into QB Chris Nickson when you get the chance; he’s Randall Cobb with more experience and fewer weapons.
Next game: 9/13, Rice
South Carolina (L, 24-17 @Vandy): If not for the fabled visor roaming the sidelines, Carolina’s 2 year losing skid to Vandy might not have such a shocking taste to it. After all, the Dores have been more successful in the SEC than the Cocks, but then you factor in the enormous talent pool from which to fish and the sizeable resources from which to pull, the blame can then fall one place and one place only: OBCO (Ol’ Ball Coach’s Office…which is decorated with the artificial heads of Bill Curry, Hal Mumme, and Phil Fulmer, and cacti). With sustained mediocrity at QB, I truly believe Spurrier might self-implode before he resigns/retires. You just know in practice he struts out there under center, with his annoyed grin slightly exceeding his gut, and straight picks apart the defense. “I still got it baby!” he likely yells as his expertly lofted pump-and-go finds the receivers hands, blowing smoke from his index finger and flipping off his QB’s with his middle. Whatever the case, they’d better pick themselves up from the floor quickly, because Georgia has revenge on their minds.
Next game: 9/13, Georgia
Ole Miss (L, 28-30 @ Wake): Make no mistake about it–this is a good football team. The Rebs have plenty of speed, good coaching and for the first time since Eli, a capable gun-slinger. Perhaps a bogus pass interference call which set up the game winning FG is the only thing standing in the way of a road win against a top 3 ACC team. They’ll be battling for a bowl in the competitive West, but they are right there speed-for-speed with anyone in the league.
Next game: 9/13 Samford
Kentucky (W, 38-3 Bryan Station): what it lacked in deliberate domination, UK’s win over a vastly outmatched opponent provided some fresh offensive highlights and vaulted the defense to #3 nationally. That won’t last, but hopefully the touchdowns will, as freshman Randall Cobb displayed a deft touch and officially opened the door to the infamous dual QB system. The running backs put up a big number, but take away a 68 yard scamper from Derrick Locke and we are staring at another curiously weak performance from the ground game. But you really can’t put much stock into these things; any analysis is almost over-analysis, as the coaches are more concerned with tinkering and tampering then who gets theirs. The perpetual lull that seems to plague the Hartline-led offense can be remedied somewhat by having Randall Cobb in the slot and either Alphonso Smith or Locke in the backfield. Let’s hope for more liberal play calling in these next two games, and not in November.
Next game: 9/13, MTSU
Florida (W, 26-3 Da U): Anytime these intrastate rivals square off, you know it’s going to be a showcase of speed, speed, thin beards and tattoos. Props to Urban Meyer for leaving Tebow in the entire game and tacking on that FG with 42 seconds left to cover the spread. It was complete, utter assiness, but a very mindful gesture from the school that didn’t invent running up the score, they just perfected it. Miami is certainly not UGA or LSU, but they have similar athletes, and this stout defensive effort from the Gators renders Tebow, Harvin and Co. that much more lethal.
Next game: 9/20, @Tennessee
No thin beard here. Well…
Arkansas (W, 28-27 LA-Monroe): for the 2nd week in a row, the Hogs needed a last minute TD to beat a proverbial cupcake. Such is life when Casey Dick is playing Brian Brohm. Ridicule and speculate all you want, but the Hogs are 2-0. Sh*t’s about to get real, however, with their next 4 games looking like this: @Texas, Bama, Florida, @Auburn. Shooeyyy.
Next game: 9/13, @Texas
Alabama 20 Tulane 6
Auburn 27 So. Miss 13
Georgia 56 C. Mich. 17
Miss. St. 34 SE La. 10
Week 2 Studs, not named Tebow:
Jared Cook, TE Carolina—8 catches, 111 yards vs. Vandy. Will be a high draft pick as the athletic TE becomes more and more coveted at the next level.
Javier Arenas, CB Bama—8 punt returns for 147 yards and a TD against Tulane. Hibachi!
Knowshon Moreno, RB UGA—18 touches, 168 yards, 3 TD’s. He’ll be here all year.
Patrick Benoist, LB Vandy—15 total tackles against the Gamecocks w/ a sack.
Jevan Snead, QB Ole Miss—20-31 for 253 yards, 4 TD’s and 1 pick. Not bad on the road against a stellar Wake Forest D.
8. Ole Miss
11. Miss St.