Monday, November 3, 2008

Monday Re-Cap

How about an SEC №1 team in the nation! Congratulations to Alabama on taking over the top spot in the poll also thanks and Congratulations to Texas Tech for knocking off the №1 Texas Longhorns. I trust everyone had a great weekend of college football, especially SEC football. The “Cocktail Party” is over now and I hope no-one had too bad of a hangover from it. Now that we are one game into the final third of the season the bowl picture is beginning to take shape and it should be exciting watching the final weeks of the season. So without any further adieu, let’s see how I did on this weeks picks.

Auburn 7 – Ole Miss 17: Hotty Toddy Reb fans! A couple of things happened Saturday at Vaught Hemingway Stadium. Number one, and the most important thing, we got a win. Two, that win was an SEC win at home. These are things that as Ole Miss fans we should be very proud of. This team is the best 4 loss team in the country in my opinion. Sophomore QB Jevan Snead started out slowly but got better as the game progressed, throwing 2 touchdown passes with no interceptions. I think Snead is learning humility in that when it isn’t there, don’t force it, sometimes a sack is the best thing that can happen. The stats in this game look very close, Auburn actually had more total yards than the Rebels but only by 21 yards (AU – 394 ; UM – 373). Ole Miss had the more balanced attack, splitting their yards up with 140 yards passing and 233 yards rushing. The key stat in this game is the turnovers. Auburn turned the ball over 3 times via the errant pass, once when the Tigers had the ball at the Rebel 17 yard line. The Ole Miss defense deserves all credit for this win. They have given up a ton of yards this season through the air but seem to find ways to stop the threat and give Snead and the offense another chance. Auburn never crossed the midfield stripe the entire first half and ended up with only 75 yards rushing. These Rebels have not been outclassed on the football field yet this year. Ole Miss is 5 – 0 when turning the ball over two or less times. One more win away from being bowl eligible, this Rebel squad has came a long way from last year, and this Rebel fan is proud of them.

Arkansas State 0 – Alabama 35: The Crimson Tide moves to 9 – 0 (5-0 SEC), and can clinch the SEC Western Division title next week with a win over LSU in Baton Rouge. As predicted Friday the Tide handled the Red Wolves of ASU with ease, never once being in danger of losing the game. Nick Saban said “We’re starting to develop that attitude of be as good as you can be, don’t play to your opponent…” I would sure say that the Tide didn’t play down to this opponent. Bama took their opening drive 89 yards and capped it off with a Glen Coffee touchdown run and the Tide never looked back. Glen Coffee sat out the second half with a bruised bicep but don’t worry Tide fans, he isn’t expected to miss any practice. The Crimson Tide defense even added a score as well on a 32 yard interception return by Rashad Johnson. The “Overlook Syndrome” was avoided and Bama was able to work on several parts of their game that will need to be firing on all cylinders come next weekend in Red Stick country. The Stats reflect the final score, showing a completely one sided affair. Their isn’t one single stat that doesn’t show 100% Crimson Tide domination. The Tide has to keep up this intensity, but their chances of getting to the BCS championship game are looking better and better week after week.

Tulsa 23 – Arkansas 30: The Razorbacks upset the № 19 team in the nation! Some may call it an upset anyway. I actually picked the Golden Hurricanes to win this one Friday and now I am kicking myself in the butt for that prediction. However I don’t see it as an upset victory in that, like I stated Friday, Tulsa hasn’t played any SEC quality opponents. I am not trying to take anything away from them, they are a good football team, I am just stating the obvious truth. The Razorback defense held the Golden Hurricanes to their lowest point total all year long; they had scored at least 37 points in all of their preceding contests. The stats in this one may mislead you. Tulsa ended up the day with 528 yards of offense. The R-Backs only had 435 total yards….ONLY…I would take that total any day. Both teams had outstanding aerial attacks (Ark. – 385 yds; Tul. – 344 yds.), but Tulsa was able to stop Michael Smith and the Razorback rushing attack, holding them to only 50 total rushing yards. Penalties and turnovers are the stats that hurt Tulsa’s bid to remain undefeated. They turned the ball over 3 times and were penalized 6 times for 57 yards. You have got to hand it to the Arkansas defense; they bent all day, but in the end preserved the victory.

Kentucky 14 – Mississippi State 13: The obvious two words that describe this SEC dual is “Defensive Struggle”. MSU has been offensively hampered all year, but I really thought that Kentucky would put up a little more of an offensive showing than this. In the end though, I predicted a Wildcat victory and that is what happened. I don’t want to sound as if the Bulldogs didn’t have a chance to win, they left points on the field in this one, missing a 27 yard field goal midway through the 4th quarter as well as having a PAT blocked; The latter proving to be the game winner for Kentucky. Defense and special teams, head coaches preach about them every week, well both teams had the defense part of this equation right and Kentucky made the special teams play that won the game. The stats in this game lean towards Mississippi state, albeit slightly, but the scoreboard is the one that counts the most.

Florida 49 – Georgia 10: I cannot speak for the rest of the country or for other SEC fans, but this game disappointing to me. You look at a Georgia team that was a pre-season №1, has one of the most talented running backs in the nation; the Bulldog quarterback is one of the most solid players in the SEC, possibly the country. One would have to think that this game would be whole lot tighter than this. I think all of the SEC nation knew going in that Tim Tebow and his entourage of talented teammates would be able to put up some points, but I surely thought Matthew Stafford coupled with Knowshon Moreno would be able to answer. Well at least I wasn’t wrong about the outcome, I thought the Gators would prevail and they did. Would someone please tell me why no one thinks Tim Tebow is on track for a second Heisman? In this installment of the “Cocktail Party” he only ran for 3 touchdowns and threw for 2 more. Bulldog quarterback: Matthew Stafford couldn’t seem to get his rhythm in this game though, credit the Gator “D” for that. Stafford threw for 265 yards but was only 18 for 33 (0.545 %) with 3 interceptions….NOT STAFFORDESQUE. The Gator defense also stopped cold, one of the nation’s most talented running back, Knowshon Moreno, with only 65 total yards. Believe or not, the Dawgs actually out gained Florida with 398 yards to the Gators 373 yards, but talk about a balanced attack. Florida had 188 yards passing with 185 rushing yards. The big stat is the 4 Georgia turnovers. Bulldog fans may be a little worried about Matthew Stafford who left the game late with an ankle injury, his x-rays were negative. Stafford was sacked twice as well which was a big factor in his interception woes. All in all I would say that the Gators got their revenge for last years loss and subsequent Georgia celebration.

Tennessee 6 – South Carolina 27: The Gamecocks are tired of losing to Tennessee! The Vols have always seemed to have South Carolina’s number, no matter how much talent either squad fielded. This SC victory is only the 4th victory over a UT team in 16 years. Gamecock freshmen QB: Stephen Garcia threw 2 touchdowns in this game and totally dominated the beleaguered Tennessee defense. The Volunteer offense didn’t fair well either against the SEC’s top rated defense. SC cornerback Stoney Woodson also had a 68 yard interception return for a touchdown to give the Gamecocks a defensive score as well. The stats in this one are not as whopsided as I had thought they would be the turnovers were probably the biggest stat that could have any reflection on the outcome. Tennessee had 3 turnovers including the before mentioned “Pick 6”. One other stat to mention just shows how anemic Fulmer’s offense is without David Cutcliffe, the Vols could only squeak out a meager 34 yards on the ground. This loss drops UT to 3 – 6 (1 - 5 SEC) on the season and out of bowl contention. It also just might be the final nail in the coffin for 17 year Tennessee head coach Phillip Fulmer. It kind of seems odd to me that a lot of Phil’s worst losses come at the hand of Steve Spurrier.

Tulane 10 – LSU 35: This was another disappointing game to me. I really thought LSU would build an early lead and then rest their starters. Most of the first half was a accented by very flat play from the Tigers. LSU came alive late in the second half though, scoring 2 touchdowns in 27 seconds. Tiger running back: Charles Scott had another huge rushing outing, gaining 114 yards. 84 yards of his total came on the very first LSU possession. Still, LSU fans have got to be happy that their team didn’t fall victim of looking ahead to next weekends SEC west showdown between the Tigers and division leading Alabama. The stats pretty much tell the same story as the scoreboard. LSU won them too….oh was that too obvious? One stat I think LSU fans will like was the Tiger’s 50% conversion ratio on 3rd down. They will have to be able to convert those next weekend as Alabama can play some very stingy defense.

Well that’s it for this past weekend’s action. This has been one of my best weeks at picking the winners, finishing up at 6 – 1, but I was little off on the particulars. I will apologize to the Razorback fans for not picking them or I could’ve been 7 – 0 this weekend. What kind of SEC fan am I that I picked out of the conference? I will be back on Wednesday for my editorial as usual. My topic for that editorial just might cause some people to ponder my sanity, certainly wouldn’t be the first time that has happened. Until then….Hotty Toddy

Darryle “Speedy” Clark

1 comment:

MuthaBlogger said...

I like the way that the blog is shaping up. It seems that you have a gift for reporting on Football. Can't wait for the new web site to launch. Failure to launch is not an option. Later, Reb.