SEC East’s most important games for 2013

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Schedule analysis:

Successful seasons always hinge on important games throughout college football. All games are certainly important, but a few stand out from the rest, obvious or not.

Here are the SEC East teams’ most important games for 2013:

Florida

Game: vs. Georgia, week 10
Buzz: To win the SEC East, Florida has to beat Georgia, who has won the last two years. And speaking of the last two years, Georgia has won two in a row against the Gators and Will Muschamp. Coach Boom is 0-6 during his career in the Florida-Georgia series, as a player and a coach.

Georgia

Game: South Carolina, week 2
Buzz: Talk about an underrated rivalry – this is a must-win game for Georgia and Mark Richt during week two. Steve Spurrier has won three straight over the Bulldogs, and weirdly enough, the Bulldogs have won the SEC East the last two years. Revenge is on the mind for UGA.

Kentucky

Game: Western Kentucky, week 1
Buzz: For Kentucky, it’s all about getting the Mark Stoops era under way and getting some more positive momentum as the season opens. Let’s face it, Kentucky’s schedule is so brutal that they could win only one or two more games than last season and it would be a big improvement. So, it’s very important to beat the Hilltoppers and Bobby Petrino in week one.

Missouri

Game: at Vanderbilt, week 6
Buzz: Missouri had a letdown in 2012, winning a total of five games and two SEC games. The Tigers lost 19-15 last season against Vandy, and they face the Commodores as the first SEC game of the season. Likewise, Vandy has a stranglehold on the fourth spot in the nasty SEC East, and that’s a great place for Missouri to want to be post 2013.

South Carolina

Game: Florida, week 12
Buzz: South Carolina’s most important game comes against Florida. I love the Georgia-South Carolina rivalry, but if the last three years have shown us anything it’s that USC can beat Georgia and still not win the East. So, with South Carolina playing the most favorable schedule of the three, the November 16th date with Florida should decide whether or not South Carolina punches a ticket to Atlanta.

Tennessee

Game: at Florida, week 4
Buzz: What used to be the premier SEC East showdown, this game has sadly fallen from a rivalry to just another series that Florida has dominated. The Gators are winners of eight straight, but it’s a new era for Butch Jones and the Vols. And he can rally the fan base behind him should he venture into The Swamp and somehow pull an upset. But that’s just a big wish until we see the Vols in action come late August.

Vanderbilt

Game: Ole Miss, week 1
Buzz: Much like Ole Miss, Vanderbilt’s most important game is week one. The Rebels and Commodores will hit each other in the mouth for the rights of claiming the SEC’s up-and-coming program to watch out for in 2013. The loser, sadly, falls from contender to pretender. Vanderbilt’s next step is 10 wins and beating a ranked opponent.

Photo Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

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