ESPN's Peter Burns shares list of Week 1 SEC things that wouldn't shock him
One of the best aspects of college football is how unpredictable it can be. A single play can change the season for two programs, and unknown players can become stars in the span of a single fall.
While it may not prove fruitful, fans across the country like to give predictions for games and players before the season. Count SEC Network anchor Peter Burns among them. Burns shared a list of things that wouldn’t shock him about the SEC after Week 1 on Twitter Monday, and it’s a list that begs to be analyzed.
— Peter Burns (@PeterBurnsESPN) August 29, 2016
Let’s start at the top. It’s entirely possible that the SEC could finish Week 1 with a 9-5 record. With some marquee non-conference matchups against Southern Cal., Clemson, North Carolina, Florida State, UCLA and Wisconsin, it’s not hard to picture a world where five losses occur. Still, that would
Predicting what will happen with Georgia’s starting quarterback situation is definitely a challenge. Reports surfaced last week that it was Jacob Eason’s job to lose, but veteran Greyson Lambert was seen getting snaps with the starters during Monday’s media viewing period. It’s a toss up.
Of the next four on Burns’ list, there’s only one that really stands out. If Deshaun Watson could torch Alabama’s vaunted defense for 478 total yards and 4 touchdowns, he can do it against Auburn. But to say that Heisman hopeful Leonard Fournette gets less than 20 carries in a non-cupcake game is just crazy.
Everything else on the list isn’t too far-fetched, but his final two score predictions are interesting. Texas A&M will have a new quarterback, albeit an experienced one, in transfer Trevor Knight. Although he started for Oklahoma, it wouldn’t be surprising if there were some initial hiccups in his first game. Meanwhile, UCLA enters with Josh Rosen at quarterback, who is poised to be a star on and off the field. A 20-point margin might be a bit of a challenge.
Tennessee, meanwhile, is looking to avoid becoming the 2016 version of Michigan against Appalachian State. 2007 may seem like a long time ago, but the Mountaineers are still a team to be reckoned with. No longer an FCS program, Appalachian State went 11-2 as a member of the Sun Belt last season. They are not to be trifled with and if the Vols exit with a 35-point victory, the SEC East will be put on notice.