Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Wide gap between Alabama, Georgia and other SEC claimants

Alabama and Georgia have made it abundantly clear that they are the cream of the Southeast Conference yet remain the top-ranked teams this season. in the nation.

Elvis Presley and the Jordanaires come to mind when thinking about the difference between the Crimson Tide and the Bulldogs and the rest of the league. Figuring out the best of the backup group is a bit more unclear after losing out to Florida, Ole Miss, Texas A&M and LSU last weekend.

No. 16 Kentucky, the only other undefeated SEC team, and No. 18 Auburn have made their way up the list of contenders.

Being there means handling the next SEC test on Saturday.

“We haven’t played our best football,” said Kentucky coach Mark Stoops. “So, they see the evidence. Now, I hope they’re just hungry, and I believe they will be.”

The Wildcats are in the middle of their most challenging stretch in recent memory between their fourth 5-0 start in 70 years. After defeating Florida in Kentucky for the first time since 1986, the Wildcats hosted LSU on Saturday night and then traveled to No.

Kentucky has won four straight runs in the NFL last spring despite losing linebacker Jamin Davis (Washington) and cornerback Calvin Joseph (Dallas) to a 10th-placed defense on the national side, seven points or less. The Wildcats, who also shut down FCS Chattanoogaorganized a powerful Florida offense for 386 yards in upsets of 20-13 last week,.

For Number 20 Florida, it was a wake-up call.

Gators Win SEC East Last year, expectations are rising for this year. He started the season with his first four matches inside his home state. The Gators now have two SEC losses and are in fourth place in the East — one spot below Tennessee.

“There’s still a lot of football to be played this year, so we’ll see how this year plays out,” said Florida coach Dan Mullen.

Auburn, with only one loss that came at Penn State Last month, plays Georgia on Saturday after rallying for his first win at LSU since 1999.

“It’s definitely a statement game,” said Auburn tight end John Samuel Schenker.

Auburn and first-year coach Brian Horsin have spoiled three games in a row, including against heavily underdog Georgia State. The Tigers have a brutal finale, hosting defending national champion Alabama. To wrap up the regular season.

“We know people think we shouldn’t rank or what,” said Auburn defensive end Eku Leota. “It helps inspire us to bring it out every week and show these people that we really do deserve opportunities that aren’t presented to us.”

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Number 13 Arkansas Definitely Thought It Was Ready To pursue Alabama and Georgia. Then came the Razorbacks’ first true SEC road test, and coach Sam Pittman said that everyone looked like they weren’t ready for the grand stage yet.

Their Razorbacks still have time to prove that they won’t wither in bright light. They visit Number 17 Ole Miss on Saturday, then host Auburn. Razorback also has back-to-back road trips to LSU and Alabama in November.

“We have a good football team, and we’ve got our butt kicked from a really good football team,” Pittman said. “We don’t like it and we’re not going to admit it, but if Georgia is going to lose us this Ole Miss game I’m going to be hurt.”

LSU is close to being 2-0 in the SEC, won at Mississippi State. and led all except the final 3:11 of last week’s loss to Auburn. If LSU wants to get back in the conversation about the best of the rest, the Tigers will have to earn it from their trip to Kentucky.

LSU then also hosted Florida on the home slate with Arkansas before moving to Ole Miss and Alabama. It’s not that the Tigers can’t figure out how to run the ball no matter what, so that coach Ed Orgron can share his anger along his offensive line.

“We have to find some new ways to block and we have to find some people who are going to block,” Orgeron said.

Texas A&M knows only too well how quickly things can change at the SEC.

Aggies rises as No. 5 in the rankings before a two-game skid with a loss to Arkansas And Mississippi State knocks them out of the top 25.

And things don’t get easier when Alabama makes Saturday night visits. The Aggies’ goals have changed as well, although coach Jimbo Fischer doesn’t have time to worry about that in the middle of the SEC season.

“We have to be a good football team,” Fischer said. “Let’s line up and keep playing and see where the year takes us.”


WNN Sports Writers Christie Ricken, Brett Martel, John Zenor, Pete Iacobelli, Gary Graves and Mark Long contributed to this report.


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