Projecting every SEC team's record in the final 7 weeks
Since we’ve had nearly two months to digest SEC football, it should be much easier to project the final seven weeks of the season, right?
If the first half taught us anything, it’s to expect the unexpected.
Only one unbeaten remains in college football’s most competitive conference and that’s LSU, a program accustomed to winning. College GameDay’s Kirk Herbstreit picked LSU to reach the national championship in August and thus far, that prediction appears golden.
Glancing at the rest of the regular season slate, here’s how we see it playing out for every SEC team:
Alabama Crimson Tide
Record: 5-0 (11-1, SEC West champions)
Verdict: Nick Saban’s team has hit its stride at the opportune time, steadily improving since the loss to Ole Miss on Sept. 19. Alabama’s showdown against LSU on Nov. 7 likely decides the division.
Record: 4-2 (6-6, lower tier bowl berth)
Verdict: Saturday’s game against Auburn will likely dictate whether the Razorbacks reach the postseason or not. A loss puts Arkansas at 2-5 with must-wins at Ole Miss and at LSU remaining — very unlikely.
Record: 1-5 (5-7)
Verdict: At 4-2 through the first half of the season, Auburn’s in decent shape as far as bowl hopes go after winning at Kentucky last Thursday. But the final six games features bouts with four nationally-ranked teams and that’s not favorable for a struggling offense.
Record: 5-1 (10-2, second in SEC East)
Verdict: Florida’s rivalry game against Georgia in Jacksonville will decide the SEC East IF the Bulldogs win at Auburn in late November. We’ve got the Gators upending Florida State in the regular-season finale as well.
Record: 5-0 (10-2, SEC East champions)
Verdict: Going against the grain here and picking the Bulldogs to beat Florida and slip past Auburn later to seize the SEC East and a trip to Atlanta. Despite the current struggles offensively, when Sony Michel returns to the full strength this team will be suited for a stretch run.
Record: 3-3 (7-5)
Verdict: Don’t worry Wildcats fans, you’re going bowling this season. Kentucky may not win its next three games, but the end of November is loaded with favorable matchups and we would take Patrick Towles vs. Louisville’s defense any day of the week.
Record: 4-1 (10-1, second in SEC West)
Verdict: LSU’s lone loss to Alabama on Nov. 7 will keep the Tigers out of the SEC Championship Game, but still makes them a sexy at-large Playoff possibility at 10-1.
Record: 3-2 (8-4)
Verdict: Gunning for win No. 9 in the regular-season finale at Mississippi State, Dak Prescott gets the last laugh in the rivalry during a Senior Night explosion. The Rebels’ other loss down the stretch comes via LSU on Nov. 21.
Mississippi State Bulldogs
Record: 3-2 (8-4)
Verdict: Mississippi State’s road matchups against Mizzou and Arkansas coming up will be swing games in the journey toward another nine-win season. We’ll say the Bulldogs split those two and beat the Rebels to finish 8-4.
Record: 2-3 (6-6)
Verdict: The Tigers are fading fast, especially offensively. With the East Division no longer within reach, Mizzou stumbles over the final two weeks against Tennessee and Arkansas to finish .500.
South Carolina Gamecocks
Record: 1-4 (4-8)
Verdict: The Gamecocks will have a head coach named by mid-December, but the remnants of a losing season will linger.
Record: 5-1 (8-4)
Verdict: Saturday’s showdown at Alabama could put the Vols back on track for a nine-win season if everything goes right in November. We’ll say Tennessee falls in Tuscaloosa before ending the year on a five-game winning streak.
Texas A&M Aggies
Record: 4-2 (9-3)
Verdict: The Aggies will fall to LSU over Thanksgiving weekend, but if they win at Ole Miss on Saturday, Texas A&M will hit double-digit victories for the regular season.
Record: 0-6 (2-10)
Verdict: Remember when we said the game at Houston would be a challenge earlier this fall? The Cougars are unbeaten and nationally-ranked, meaning the Commodores will likely lose every game the rest of the way. Ten losses likely ends Derek Mason’s tenure.