Thursday, September 11, 2008

SEC Weekend Games of Interest: 9/13/2008

We did pretty well last week and had our first series of undefeated predictions, bringing our season record to a respectable 14-2. Here are a few games happening in your neck of the woods:

UAB at Tennessee: Neil Callaway will take the perennial doghouse from Birmingham up to Knoxville in what should be the Arian Foster show. UT has had two weeks to recover from Dave Clawson falling flat on his face during his Offensive Coordinator debut against UCLA.

"Boys, the best thing we can do is throw the ball 41 times when Arian is averaging 7.4 yards per carry"

UAB has lost both of its games, giving up 94 points and over 1,100 offensive yards in the process. Tennessee should come out with a conservative and efficient game plan in an effort to get Jonathan Crompton in sink and create some offensive unity. The Vols looked out of sorts in the Rose Bowl and need to play well in this game with Florida coming up. B’NE says Tennessee win big in this one.

Arkansas at Texas: Postponed, more fun to come in the 9/27/2008 edition.

Paging Coach Nutt, Arkansas Program Resuscitation needed at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium.

Auburn at Mississippi State: Auburn has looked very good on defense to start the year and will continue to play solid D against the Bulldogs of the west. Despite the early scrutiny of Tony Franklin’s new system, they are averaging close to 400 yards a game and running the ball well. (Yes, who have they played? Blah Blah Blah). The API faithful seem to believe that they have a QB in Chris Todd and I’m sure he can dink and dunk as well as Dusty Bonner.

Coach Franklin helped me and look what I got, A free ride to Valdosta State!

Mississippi State did what they had to do against SE Louisiana and won, playing solid defense and controlling the clock/ball with big back Anthony Dixon. The Cowbells should be out in full force as MSU tries to win its third consecutive game against a ranked opponent. Hell, we may even get a flyover at Scott Field:

State has a shot if they play solid defense and don’t turn the ball over, like in last year's 19-14 upset. However, I expect Auburn to come out and control the game, look for a physical 10-14 point Tiger victory.

Western Kentucky at Alabama: Western Kentucky is still transitioning in to Division I-A football and will continue to struggle when they play larger opponents. They went 7-5 in their first season, but their 49-3 opening game loss to UF last year and their 31-13 loss to Indiana University earlier this year are the true measure of this program’s progress. Alabama should overpower in this match up and will continue to build the completion percentage and confidence of QB John Parker Wilson. Bama is 15-1 all time against Sun Belt opponents.

I told you last week, This picture never gets old.

Middle Tennessee State University at Kentucky: the Blue Raiders of MTSU beat Maryland last week to even their record at 1-1 and could be a threat for the Wildcats. UK has been strong on defense and has held both of their opponents to a combined 5 points, albeit against weaker competition. As good as they have been on D; their offense has struggled equally with speedy RB Derrick Locke being the only spark. This is most likely going to be a sloppy game where UK’s experience and defensive athleticism shines through. UK wins ugly and tacks on a late TD to make the win look better.

Samford at Ole Miss: I had a couple of friends in High School that played football at Samford, they aren’t very good. The Bulldogs of Alabama have beaten a Division II school (West Georgia) and Alabama Christian College (Faulkner) to get their 2-0 record. In our random pop culture factoid of the week, former MLB pitcher Shane Reynolds is a proud Faulkner Graduate; even he didn’t know they had a football team. Ole Miss will steamroll here.

Rice at Vanderbilt: More smart people playing football and there really isn’t more that you can say. Seriously, Rice is 2-0 in coach Dave Bailiff’s second season and has but up plenty of points behind talented senior QB Chase Clement. Expect Vandy to be confident coming off their Carolina win and keep the ball in the hands of their play maker, Chris Nickson. Vandy rolls here, but Rice will keep pace and put up their share of points. Besides, I have a feeling that the Rice students will be more concerned with the campus tradition of Baker 13.

North Texas at Louisiana State University: LSU will look to run up the score and move up in the polls here. Think about it, they have played one game against Appalachian State, had another game postponed and moved up to 7th in the rankings and no one has said anything about them. Young QB’s Andrew Hatch and Jarrett Lee will impress statistically in this game as North Texas is pretty hapless. Queer Eye for the Straight Guy did an episode at the North Texas Sigma Chi house a few years ago and it looks as if they revamped the football team while they were there. This former Sun Belt power is terrible. LSU covers the points and after the game, Ted Allen, Snoop Dogg and Less(get it) Miles all go to dinner together.

"Snoop, Ty Henschke told me this tie would really pop."

That does it for this week’s edition. The B’NE team will report back from the Lake House and Columbia after the weekend.

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