SEC Week 2 superlatives


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Every Monday, we’ll be looking at Saturday superlatives. We’ll recognize the teams and players who stood out before we officially turn the page to next Saturday…but we’ll also recognize the most disappointing units of the entire weekend.

Best game: South Carolina at Georgia

South Carolina-Georgia delivered a heavyweight brawl that ultimately ended with Georgia shredding the Carolina defense. But for three and a half quarters, these two traded punches like Ali-Frazier in ‘75. It was a game of runs, as Georgia took the early 17-3 lead, only to see Carolina make it 24-24 at halftime. Aaron Murray made the big play to Justin Scott-Wesley for the final nail, an 85-yard TD pass. The SEC’s most underrated rivalry delivered again, and so did the game’s most scrutinized player, Aaron Murray. How did Georgia lose to Clemson again?

Related: Four takeaways from Georgia-South Carolina

Most impressive team(s): LSU and Georgia

Georgia and LSU were Saturday’s impressive teams. Both can patch things up on defense, but the offenses are explosive. The Bulldogs threw up a 41 spot on South Carolina, while LSU put up 56 against UAB behind Zach Mettenberger’s school-record five touchdown passes. And lucky for us SEC fans, these two teams will hit each other in the mouth in just three weeks, in what is quickly becoming one of the most anticipated and most important SEC games of the season.

Best Offense: Georgia

Relative to the competition, Georgia’s offense was the most explosive. I know TAMU put up 65 against Sam Houston State, but South Carolina was a top three defense in the SEC last season. Hats off to you, Mike Bobo, after another impressive game with your (boring) offense putting up serious numbers. Five hundred and thirty eight yards of total offense even has Steve Spurrier adding his two cents to Carolina defensive coordinator Lorenzo Ward.

Best Defense: Florida

For as bad as Florida’s offense played, the Gators’ defense is nasty. The defensive line, linebackers and the secondary settled down after Miami scored two quick touchdowns in the first quarter. Florida allowed 143 total yards in the first quarter, and Miami was held to 69 yards in the final three quarters. DT Dominique Easley and company really disrupted Miami’s offense and held Duke Johnson to just 59 yards and 2.8 yards per carry. They are dominant, but can they get any offensive help?

Biggest immediate concern: Texas A&M’s run defense

Texas A&M’s defense is 13th in total defense and 14th in run defense heading into Alabama week. After giving up 509 yards last week to Rice, Sam Houston State mounted 390 total yards this week. We know the offense can score, but teams are averaging over 273 yards rushing per game. That won’t win an SEC Championship, and it won’t beat Alabama, will it? That offense is putting up some serious numbers though, and Johnny Manziel will be ready for Alabama.

Biggest letdown: Florida’s offense

Talk about a letdown. Florida played one of the worst offensive performances in recent memory. The box score tells of an unexplainable Florida showing. The Gators dominated time of possession, yardage and most other lines, as well as the seemingly reoccurring line of penalties. Florida committed 10 for 70 yards, doubling Miami’s penalties, and it continues to be a staple of the Muschamp era. The offense isn’t good enough to overcome poor penalties. Then, throw in five turnovers and there’s no chance. The Gators exited the game 1-6 in the redzone, while Muschamp’s post-game criticism went toward the defense.

Best offensive player: Georgia QB Aaron Murray

This was a feel-good game for Murray. Amid all the criticism regarding his record against top 10 opponents, Murray gets redemption by smoking the Gamecocks and putting up 41 points. Murray threw for 309 yards and four TDs, a great performance against a good defense.

Best defensive player: Kentucky DE Za’Darius Smith

Miami (OH) was a terrible team, but credit DE Za’Darius Smith with three sacks. Smith, the JUCO transfer, had a career day and currently leads the SEC with four sacks.

All-purpose animal: LSU WR/KR Odell Beckham

We are witnessing a star in the making with LSU’s Odell Beckham. He combined for 331 all-purpose yards against UAB, coming off of 272 yards against TCU in the first week. Beckham recorded five receptions for 136 yards, and he added a 109-yard missed field goal return. It was an all-around incredible performance for one of the SEC’s biggest breakout players in 2013.

Feel-good performance: Kentucky

Hats of to Kentucky’s 675 yards of total offense and Mark Stoops’ first win as a head coach. A win against Louisville this week, and he can run for office.

Biggest unknowns: Arkansas, Missouri and Tennessee

We still don’t know much about Arkansas, Missouri and Tennessee thus far. The Hogs play Rutgers in two weeks, and Missouri doesn’t play an SEC game for three weeks. Tennessee plays Oregon next week and Florida the week after.

Celebrated performance: Shon Coleman, Auburn

Shon Coleman made his long-awaited appearance since being diagnosed with leukemia in March 2010, and he helped lead a TD drive in the fourth quarter. The former five-star tackle’s journey ended the way he wanted — on the field.

Photo Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports



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  • Defensive Players of the Week:

    1) LaDarius Owens (Auburn JR DE): 8 tackles (3 solo, 5 assisted), 2.0 TFLs, 1.0 sack, 1 QB Hurry

    2) Roland Powell (Florida JR LB) 3 tackles (all solo), 3 TFLs, 1.0 sack,

    3) Amarlo Herrera (Georgia JR ILB): 12 rackles (5 solo, 7 assisted), 1.0 TFL, 0.5 sacks, 1 FF

    4) Jermauria Rasco (Tigers JR DE): 6 tackles (1 solo, 5 assisted), 1.0 TFL, 1.0 sack, 2 QB Hurries

  • I don’t understand how scoring 56 on UAB is impressive? Isn’t that what you are supposed to do to a cupcake team? Correct me if I’m wrong.

    • Mettenberger set a TD-record against UAB. It’s not the opponent; it’s the difference that Cam Cameron is making. Impressive through two weeks.

      • No denying LSU is a very good football team. It’s just that beating up on a Conference USA team doesn’t excite me too much. Again, it’s whats expected.

    • UAB doesn’t even qualify as a “cupcake”….but I will say with an LSU team who had problems at time scoring the past couple of seasons, it has to be a positive to cross the goal line so many times, no matter who the opponent is.

      • Maybe I missed something, but I can’t consider anybody fro Conference USA a quality opponent.

        • Dawgfan, I’m with you. I’m not impressed with any of these types of wins. So you can put up big numbers against lower tier teams. But don’t worry, time will tell. Big games loom in the near future.

  • We know more about Missouri than we want to let on. Before the game saturday the news media was full of writers who were sure Toledo was an upset threat. In fact nearly all of the rankings had Toledo at about 43th and Missouri at about 57th. So explain why when real money was at stake, Vegas had Missouri winning by 17 points. Toledo gave Missouri their best shot. They executed a smart and effective game plan, but they still could never get the upper hand on Missouri. The rankings have ridiculous teams ahead of Missouri now, like UCF who Missouri beat at their place last year. No team is playing their best football yet but Missouri is at least progressing as fast as the field. After beating Toledo 38-23 Missouri should have been ranked near the top 30. Go Tigers, you have a week off. Get that O-line and D-line technique perfected and get that pass defense improved, You are on your way to a great season.

  • How about a Best freshman Offensive Player of the Week… Arkansas’ Alex Collins, 24 carries 172 yards and a TD?

  • Right behind Murray for best offensive player would be the Gamecocks Mike Davis and the Bulldogs Gurley, who both had great games.

  • a sports blog and tv network I refuse to name has Missouri’s Marcus Golden as defensive player of the week and for good reason. This play is better than the Clowney play. Oh my gosh, he shoves an outstanding quarterback so hard that he has to backpedal 10 yards backwards before toppling end over end, and at the same time he intercepts the pass at it’s source, then he is so fast nobody can catch him 70 yard TD. PLAY OF THE YEAR. You have to see it. Jon Cooper can you get a tape of it on here?

  • Really?! Florida with the best defense when Tennessee had FIVE turnovers within six plays?! We dominated WKU who made Kensucky look like a pee-wee squad. I’m convinced that you sir, hate the Tennessee Volunteers. Hell, if we won the NC you STILL probably wouldn’t give us credit. GO VOLS!! Brick by brick!!!

    • Florida has the best defense in the country and showed how nasty they were last week. Credit to Tennessee for capitalizing on those TOs but Florida has a much better defense. WKU beat KY. Teams are supposed to make them look pee-wee.

  • Tennessee’s defense had 7 turnovers against a Bobby Petrino offense. If you remember his Arkansas days, Petrino is a pretty good offensive mind. Against an opposing QB that completed 75% of his passes last week against an SEC opponent, thought the Vol’s 5 interceptions were stellar.

  • As a Bama fan, I confess I am a little worried about facing A&M and JM. The boy makes plays. At the same time, is the A&M D really this bad? Did they really allow Rice & Sam Houston over 800 yards? Wow. With some of the holes in Bama’s D, this could be a really high scoring game??? Hoping the Tide will shred Manziel.

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