SEC has 4 teams mentioned in latest USA TODAY 'Misery Index'
The SEC this season is a tale of elite teams, and teams that are having nightmarish seasons. In this week’s “Misery Index,” Dan Wolken of USA TODAY writes about four of the teams at or near the bottom, and they all had forgettable games on Saturday.
Bobby Petrino’s appearance at a Little Rock Touchdown Club meeting gave Arkansas fans a glimpse of what the program used to be, but Saturday’s loss to San Jose State was “rock bottom,” according to Wolken, who pointed out that San Jose State had beaten just two FBS teams (Wyoming and UNLV) since the start of the 2017 season.
“You can’t dance around this,” Wolken wrote. “It’s unforgivable for Arkansas to lose that game, and it’s particularly bad for coach Chad Morris because his short tenure already includes losses to North Texas and Colorado State. One of those is survivable, two is a big problem, and three is a crisis.”
At South Carolina, it’s about managing expectations.
“A 34-13 loss at Missouri in which its offense gained just 270 yards has left South Carolina at 1-3, which is a tipping point for many fans who are ready to burn it to the ground,” Wolken wrote. “But (Will) Muschamp’s overall record is far from disastrous at 23-20, and he’s playing a freshman quarterback in Ryan Hilinski who has a chance to be very good. Muschamp’s teams may never be as good as the preseason hype, but maybe South Carolina should expect a little bit less.”
At Tennessee, Jeremy Pruitt’s job security may take a back seat to a more pressing problem in Knoxville, empty seats by late in the season.
“The numbing effect of so many losses and poor performances has taken the sting out of what’s happened to the 1-3 Vols this season,” Wolken wrote. “But there is a realization setting in for the fan base after Saturday’s 34-3 loss to Florida that this is a long-haul problem, and there is no shortcut out of it.”
The Aggies, however, may be trending toward misery, though this is another case of managing expectations from last season.
“The Aggies will win at least seven games this year, but it’s hard to envision how they’ll beat anyone good without some more dynamic playmakers or significantly more accurate passing from Kellen Mond. Fans aren’t going to blame Fisher, at least for now,” Wolken wrote. “Instead, the target is going to be former coach Kevin Sumlin, now at Arizona, who spent his Saturday night fanning the flames with a simple eye emoji tweet shortly after the loss went final.”