What happened to you on Saturday: Week 9

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What happened to you on Saturday? This is the must read for every SEC football fan on Monday morning right here at Saturday Down South. Pulling no punches as we recap a weekend of SEC football action…

Alabama Sends a Message

The difference between Alabama and the next closest team in college football is the difference between The Godfather and the next best movie about the mafia.  I’m completely serious when I say that if they lined up on a neutral field, well, forget that, if they played the Jaguars in Jacksonville the Tide would be at least a field goal favorite.  Better coach, better quarterback, they still care, etc…

Alabama faced what looked like their first real challenge of the season in previously unbeaten Mississippi State, well until the football game started.  That’s not a shot at Mississippi State.  It would be the same way for everyone.  LSU, Notre Dame, anyone.  They are Indiana Jones and everyone else is the sword-twirling guy from Raiders of the Lost Ark.

The only thing that confuses me about Alabama is A.J. McCarron.  How can a guy be so steady and mistake free on the field, yet think this tattoo was a good idea?  It doesn’t make sense.

McCarron has been great all season and is creeping into Heisman consideration with his consistent, mistake free brand of quarterbacking, but I don’t see him winning it.  Baseball nerds came up with a stat to help determine how many wins a player would give his team as opposed to any average, replacement level player.  They call it WAR (Wins Above Replacement). For example, if Vanderbilt’s Jordan Rodgers was the quarterback for Alabama, what would their record be? Undefeated? Yeah, that’s probably why A.J. McCarron won’t win the Heisman.

Florida Hands Georgia the SEC East                                                                                     

The World’s Largest Outdoor Whose Quarterback Hates Winning More Party?  The World’s Largest Outdoor Determination of Who Alabama Beats by 21 in Atlanta Party?  I’m not sure cocktails are strong enough to make that game watchable.  It might be time to take the gateway to the stronger stuff.  Tune in next year for the World’s Largest Outdoor Angel Dust Party.

Georgia’s Shawn Williams will be remembered as Mickey to Jarvis Jones’ Rocky.  Williams called the defense a bunch of bums and they stepped up in response.  When Mark Richt gets his raise after the season he should mail the amount to Williams, and if that doesn’t happen, Williams should sue.

Jones was amazing. 13 tackles, three sacks and two forced fumbles, making this season’s Butkus Award far more interesting than the Heisman.  Notre Dame’s Manti Te’o, LSU’s Kevin Minter and Jones have all been spectacular this season.

Florida TE Jordan Reed realized what I realized early in the game, that he is Florida’s only real playmaker on offense.  He tried to do too much at the worst possible moment but maybe he needed to do too much because I’m not sure anyone else could have.  It just didn’t work out.

Remember what I said about A.J. McCarron’s WAR?  This game was the argument to why McCarron should win the Heisman.  Jeff Driskel wasn’t in this game from literally the first play, where he dropped a hand-off.  His interception with no time on the clock before halftime was unacceptable.  Aaron Murray’s three interceptions was the only reason Florida even had the opportunity to fumble the game away in the fourth quarter.  If either team had a quarterback that didn’t make mistakes, this is a blowout.

It was super sloppy, and if Georgia wants to win out, their takeaway from this game shouldn’t be “This is what we are capable of”, but rather, “We are capable of much more.”

Auburn…

Johnny Football had 350 combined yards and five touchdowns.  Texas A&M threw up 63 points, beating Auburn by 42.  I like Texas A&M a lot, and think Kevin Sumlin is a great coach, but they aren’t that good.  They aren’t 63 points in Auburn good, there is a bigger story here.

Auburn is an absolute disaster.

Get Better Marcus Lattimore

The entire day was overshadowed by the gruesome injury sustained by South Carolina RB Marcus Lattimore.  The instant outpouring of prayers and support will be needed as he goes through the physical and mental recovery that follows an injury like that.

I said it at the time and I still will say it, I didn’t like the hit.  Eric Gordon turned himself into a flying ACL tearing missile on that play, and what happened to Lattimore is what happens when you go helmet first as fast as you can into a kneecap.

Football is going through a transformation where violence just because you can is being punished.  The NFL is demanding that defenders consider the consequences of their hits and reduce the brutality.  Football is and always will be a physical game where injuries happen, but that hit on that play didn’t need to happen.  If a player is capable of altering a hit to an opponent’s skull, they can do the same on a player’s knee.  It can’t always happen, but on this play, it could have. This play was blown up; Lattimore was going down already. If Gordon had pulled up, or done anything instead of going lower, it’s just another tackle for a loss. He made his choice.

That’s Eric Gordon’s style, though.  He’s a vicious player.  Don’t ask me, ask him.  Ask his teammates.

Plays That Mattered

Oh, yeah, Saban started recruiting skill players too.  This is the result. A.J. McCarron to Kenny Bell for 57 yards.

Part of being a quality team in the SEC is winning the games you are supposed to win.  Ole Miss made the plays necessary to win at Arkansas, showing they are heading in the right direction.

Jordan Reed was trying to do a little too much and gave Jarvis Jones all he needed to end this threatening drive and lock up the win for the Bulldogs.

What They Meant to Say

“Wow I just lost by 42 points at home? When I get home, I’ll be starting a website called, www.AuburnShouldProbablyFireMe.com.” – Gene Chizik, Head Coach (For Now), Auburn

“Remember that Florida Head Cheerleader Jeff Driskel was dating?  Yeah, she’s with me now. – Jarvis Jones, LB, Georgia

“I’m a really good quarterback.  I’m begging NFL teams to separate the nightmare that surrounds me from the player that I could be.  Lane Kiffin and Derek Dooley are total clowns who  were handed the head coaching job here because of hard work their fathers did elsewhere.  It’s insane.  I’m a talented guy. – Tyler Bray, Quarterback, Tennessee

Photo Credit: Marvin Gentry-US PRESSWIRE

REFERENCES

COMMENTS

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  • Apparently, A&M is 63 points good at Auburn. They just did it. They played the same Auburn team that everyone else has played this year. Everybody else had a chance to hang 63 and didn’t. Sumlin and the Aggies did. Auburn didn’t spot A&M any points to start the game. Not sure of the logic here.

    • Yeah, I kind of picked up on that as well. However, I think the point was that the game came down to how bad Auburn is this year (as opposed to how good Texas A&M is).

      • This is what happens when this Aggie offense is hitting on all cylinders against a bad defense. Ags have been lighting up bad defenses all year, scoring in the high 50s against Arkansas and La Tech. Most of the offenses Auburn has faced just aren’t as explosive as the Aggies (few are), and the Ole Miss game indicates Auburn has particular difficulties w/ the spread. Add in the factor that Auburn’s offense is woeful, and consequently couldn’t keep the Aggie offense off the field, and it was a recipe for a disaster.

        It’s just like A&M isn’t 19 pts. bad home vs. LSU. Yeah, when they turn the ball over against a great defense, they aren’t going to put up video game numbers on the scoreboard. The fact is that since Manziel is still a redshirt freshman, and the whole team is still in the first year of Sumlin’s system, there’s greater probability for inconsistency in execution, with high peaks and low valleys.

        I’d say the takeaway is that A&M, if playing well, can probably score in the 30s on even a good defense.

        • I’m completely with you on this. I was glad to see A&M come to the SEC. If they can get some defense going in the near future, then I see them quite possibly being a real contender in the SEC west. I think that will happen, as I believe they will be able to recruit better now that they are an SEC team. Defense is critical down here. As for Manziel’s turnovers, I chalk that up to a less-experienced QB. I don’t see him having a game like that next year.

  • OK. I’m tired of this. Honestly. For the past two days 90% of the comments made verbally or through the internet have just bashed Georgia. They have have said that Aaron Murray is official overrated, that the offensive game was terrible, that the game in general was “unwatchable”, and any number of complaints have been made against the Dawgs. Few actually give credit to the defense (really they just say a blurb about Jarvis Jones and then move on to talking about how bad the offense was). I’m tired of it. When Florida played LSU, all we heard was that Florida did what they had to do to win. Period. Nothing about the less than 450 total yards of offense for both teams combined or something like 6 turnovers for both teams combined, or anything else. All that was said about them was that “the won the game when they had to”. Or when South Carolina struggled with Kentucky down 17-7 at the half, all that mattered was that the second half. Georgia struggled with Tennessee the reaction was that our defense was obviously terrible. South Carolina does the same thing, it’s fine because an offensive player was hurt.
    I don’t get it. Why does no one talk about the fact that our run game (which was supposed to be overrated and do nothing against Florida’s dominate defense) not only rushed for more yards than Florida’s, but also didn’t fumble the ball ,and Todd Gurley had a resurgent game after a couple back to back sub-par performances. Why do we not talk about the defense as a whole. What with the two INTs, alongside those 4 FORCED (NOT GIVEN) fumbles. Why do we say, Jarvis Jones was the only player that mattered? Why haven’t I even mentioned Malcolm Mitchell? Why is it that Georgia can’t play the ground and pound, defense fought game and win, but Florida can or South Carolina can? Why is it we nit pick with Georgia? Aaron Murray threw for 400+ plus yards last week, 4 TDs, and had a 65+%. But he struggles against what is supposedly a great Florida secondary, and automatically its he is overrated. Why are we quantifying the win for Georgia as just luck, or ugly, or saying it was given to us, instead of admitting Georgia pounded away at Florida for 60 minutes and never let Florida have a lead during the game. Why?

    • Take a step back from the ledge. I believe the author gave credit to Jarvis Jones and Shawn Williams for calling out the defense. The defense was stout against Florida. But there’s no doubt that this was a sloppy game. You can ignore it if you want. Winning sloppy is still winning. Georgia will likely win 10/11 games and get the privilege of getting shallacked against Alabama in Atlanta.

      • See this is my point. Georgia played something like 15 guys on the defensive side of the ball play on Saturday. But we act like only two guys played that game (Jarvis Jones and Shawn Williams). But Bacarri Rambo had 5 tackles, 1 sack, and an INT. It wasn’t just JJ and Shawn.
        Then we act like Murray was deplorable all game. Well that is where I can obviously say people just looked at the box score instead of the game. So Murray started the game on a tear, 4/4 34 yards and was up 7-0. It wasn’t until about 2 minutes left in the first quarter that Murray threw an INT. It was a pass right to the receivers, in between three Florida defenders. The receiver had it in his hands, and then it tipped up, and intercepted. So not exactly Murray’s fault, it is was 50-50 (so he finished the quarter 4/5 34 yards an INT but the lead). But then came the second quarter, he went 0/3 with two INTs. Ending the half 4/8 34 yards 3 INTs and a slim lead. The third quarter was little comfort for Georgia fans. While not throwing an INT, he went 3/8 for 33 yards. He ended the quarter better at 2/3 with 23 yards on Georgia’s final drive of the third, but he still just had a slim lead. The 4th quarter was completely different. He went 5/8 for 83 yards and a TD and 0 INTs (no INTS in fact for the entire half). What people say on the recaps and box scores was that Murray had 3 INTs and only a 50% completion percentage plus threw for just 150 yards. They don’t see that Murray wasn’t sacked. He started and ended the game well (9/13 117 yards 1 TD 1 INT in the first and fourth quarters combined). They zero in on the second and third when he went 3/11 33 yards 2 INTs. Was this Murray’s best game? Not by a long shot. But he won. That is what should matter.

        • Yup…I feel ya frustration…He pulled through when it mattered most… But I will put all 3 INTs directly in his lap because he was trying to make throws that Nobody makes. The first one that got tipped…Yes it was on target but also into a crowd of 3 very good UF defenders…when he had the check down all day. Murray has the Brett Favre/Drew Brees gunslinger attitude which is why ya like him…but its also his downfall as is it theirs.

    • Here’s a tissue. Everything will be alright okay??

      Now to address your short story. Murray isn’t as good as you’re assuming. He had 4 TD’s last week? Are you talking about the Kentucky game? Against that monster of a defense in Kentucky? Taking the last three games into account, he has 5 TD’s and 4 INT’s, there is nothing else that needs to be said there. I watched this game and it WAS ugly. Georgia had many chances to put this game away but their offense just couldn’t do it. Murray threw several hideously ugly passes. He isn’t a bad QB, he just isn’t a great one either. Last year and this year Georgia has had a purely defensive team. They could’ve won the SEC Championship game last year if they had a remotely decent offense.

      • Obviously you haven’t watched Georgia this year, or you would know that this year we have had a much better offense than we have defense.

        • You’re saying Georgia’s offense is better than their defense?? WOW. I’m not sure if you’re delusional or just trolling.

    • Jecmoore: Author’s just being cynical and humorous dude…This ain’t the thread for details and stats. But I hear ya and here’s the thing: He made a good point at the end when he said “This shouldn’t be what we are capable of…but that we are capable of more”. We finally got the defensive to put together a solid performance. Murray was the only sloppy player and it was him just trying too hard. If he took the check downs instead of trying to force the ball downfield against that secondary I don’t think that game is close….and if we put it all together…think we give ANYBODY a game.

    • Jec & JP… What I keep hearing (not from this article) has very little to do with the INTs or fumbles as much as the penalties. I can’t recall numbers. But, it made several high school games Friday night look good! And most of them were STUPID! So.. Yes, Georgia’s defense played a good game(helped by several penalties and a player trying too hard). IMO, this game wasn’t won by the best team playing great football. It was won by the team that played the best football and made fewer mistakes!

      But, all that being said, it should be a fun game in December!

  • Now, that I am done with my rant on Georgia. I would like to remark on Marcus Lattimore and the hit. I have watched something I said I wouldn’t watch again. And Eric Gordon did lead with his helmet a bit. But that is how you tackle Lattimore. Not trying his knee out, but going low. Like AP, that is how you have to take him down. By trying to tackle him low. Sadly, this was the hit that did him in. Did Gordon try to lead with his helmet or try to take Lattimore out like that? No. I think we can obviously say no. But it happens. This is football. It is what you sign up for. What I think is egregious is that we care little for our defensive players health (Brian Cushing anyone?). We care so much about the money makers in QBs, and RBs, and WRs, that the defense can get hit like that and we claim “it’s football”. But it happens to a running back, and it’s terrible, we say “that isn’t what football is about”. I think if we are going to claim Gordon’s hit is dirty then we need to make a stand against all dirty hits. Offensively and defensively.

  • Sorry to hear about Lattimore. It is sad to see that happen to such a talented kid for a second year in a row no less. Also, I wonder if Pat Dye regrets his Chizik comments from earlier in the season?

  • “Eric Gordon turned himself into a flying ACL tearing missile on that play…”

    That’s just ridiculous. He never left the ground and it looked like a clean cut block. I hate UT more than any other team and even I could see that wasn’t a dirty hit.

    • Ditto. I know I am a homer, but I don’t agree at all with that statement either. RB’s get tackled low all the time. Part of the game. Would like to see a source for that Bray quote, too.

      • Guess I should read closer… LOL.

        • There’s NO WAY Bray said this… What kind of site is this? ACL Missile? What a joke of a write-up.

        • It’s a “What they MEANT to say”… I freaked out at first too. Guess it’s easy to get worked up anymore as a Vol fan.

        • And ok I see… “What they MEANT to say.”

          But as far as the Lattimore injury goes… No one wanted this to happen, especially Eric Gordon… It’s just the way football goes sometimes.
          I felt awful the minute it happened and I wish him a speedy recovery.

      • Did you guys read the Jarvis Jones and Chizik quotes too and think those were real? C’mon man, the “What they meant to say” quotes are at the end of every William Wallace recap each week and are hilarious.

  • Dude…some good stuff in there as usual…but UF didnt just hand us the game…We just straight went down to Jville and “Debo’d” them for the win, their bicycle, and all their lunch money! They been bullying everyone they play with that ugly but effective physical play…But we just out-bullied them..plain and simple.

  • Ok, on the Lattimore injury, i think the point being made is that maybe we should alter the idea of going head first into a knee sort of like football has been altering the idea of going head first into another guy’s head. I don’t think anyone thinks Eric Gordon said Ok I’m going to take out Lattimore’s knee on this play, but it’s a common type of tackle and one especially by the ultra-physical (not a bad thing) Eric Gordon. For me, I’m surprised more knees aren’t blown out with these types of tackles. It sucks because it changes careers for these kids.

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