Predicting the SEC's final records after Week 6
SEC play is now 6 weeks old, and surely, we’ve got it all figured out. OK, maybe not, but we’re surely getting closer. It’s time for our weekly look around the SEC, with our attempts to project how your favorite SEC squad will finish their regular season. Let’s dive in.
Well, that was surprising. Even in the aftermath of the upset loss, it’s hard to see any potential losses left on their schedule. Mississippi State and Auburn are the two road games left. Arkansas is the best team left, but hard to imagine the Hogs winning in Tuscaloosa.
Speaking of which … Tough loss for the Razorbacks, and there’s definitely more room to put them at 8-4 than there would be to adjust upward. Alabama looks like a loss, but if Arkansas can handle Auburn at home, that’s probably the biggest other threat left. Last week, we speculated that losing to Ole Miss might well drop the Razorbacks. But based on how they lost, we’ll stay at 9-3.
Based on Texas A&M besting ‘Bama, we downgraded the Tigers. Arkansas and Ole Miss will likely give the Tigers a 3-game losing streak heading into College Station, so we’ll go here. Auburn is obviously upwardly mobile. There’s every reason to think they could beat Arkansas or A&M. But based on current impression, here they sit.
Just hard to see a winning record for this bunch. Florida, Ole Miss and Bama in the next three don’t look like a very winnable group of games. Two straight subpar seasons for the Tigers won’t settle well for LSU fans — or Ed Orgeron’s future.
Mississippi State: 6-6
The Bulldogs were off this week, but based on the impressive performances of much of the rest of the West, they do get a small downgrade here. Vandy and Tennessee State are solid, but we’d have to say 1-3 against Kentucky, Ole Miss, Arkansas and Auburn will be pretty solid. Auburn looks the most beatable, but that is a road game. So we’ll stick at 6-6 for now.
Ole Miss: 10-2
Taking down Arkansas gives us confidence that the Rebels should be in pretty good shape the rest of the way. Road games at Tennessee and Auburn could be interesting, and the Egg Bowl is never a sure win for anyone. But Ole Miss is on a solid track to finish 2nd in the SEC West and play in a better bowl game than they have in many years.
Texas A&M: 9-3
The Aggies certainly were impressive in upsetting Alabama, and other than Ole Miss on the road, they look like a possible favorite in every game left. Since they host Auburn and the Tigers didn’t impress, we upped it to 9-3 for the Aggies.
Florida does what it does, and there aren’t a lot of competitive games left on the schedule. It would take a surprise for us to move off of this 9-3 mark for the Gators.
Nothing changed our mind this week. Auburn was just another opposing offense made to look pretty much completely inept by Georgia. The Bulldogs are the best team in college football right now, and it may not be particularly close.
The last hurdle for Kentucky is Georgia, but that hurdle still looks like a mountain from here. The question at this point might be whether there is a 2nd loss on tap for Kentucky. At Mississippi State and home against Tennessee can both be challenging, but there was real consideration for going to 11-1 here. But for now, we’ll hold at 10-2.
After watching Missouri give up 35 points to North Texas, the only reason we even stick at 5-7 is that the Tigers will be able to outscore Vanderbilt and South Carolina, probably. This isn’t the year the Tigers expected, and it would seem very likely that they’ll have some massive defensive staff changes this winter.
South Carolina: 4-8
Last week, we were speculating about a path to a bowl game for the Gamecocks. But getting blistered at Tennessee changed our minds pretty quick. Vandy should be a win, and Missouri will likely present a horrible defense to face Carolina’s struggling offense. Given how the Gamecocks have struggled, we’ll stick them at 4-8 now. This doesn’t look like a team that beats Auburn or Texas A&M.
Beating South Carolina was big for the Vols, because they can play that rough next 4 games (Ole Miss at home, at Bama, at Kentucky, home vs. Georgia) and regard them as free money. Those 6 wins are all but banked with South Alabama and Vandy lurking at the end of the season. Tennessee looks like a team that could give Kentucky or Ole Miss some trouble, and again, given the “go for broke” nature of their schedule, maybe they will.
The rest of the road looks pretty painful for the Commodores.