5 best SEC games of Week 8
It’s an odd schedule this week in the SEC, and it feels more like one of those weeks where no one can really win anything in the division races but several teams can lose a lot.
That’s what happens when division leaders Florida and LSU aren’t playing conference foes. Florida is off, prepping for Georgia next week, and LSU has a nonconference game with Western Kentucky.
Everyone is trying to stay in the race, and there’s plenty of intrigue on that front. Here are the five best games of Week 8. There are only six games, so sorry Missouri and Vanderbilt.
1. Texas A&M at Ole Miss: Both teams are one notch behind LSU in the SEC West but Ole Miss still controls its own destiny thanks to that September win at Alabama. A second loss will be devastating to both of them. Look for quarterbacks Chad Kelly and Kyle Allen to light up the scoreboard in a stay-alive game.
2. Tennessee at Alabama: It’s been a month now since Alabama lost to Ole Miss and we don’t even recognize the Crimson Tide anymore. They’re not turning the ball over, they’re stuffing the run and they’re playing like the Alabama of old. Maybe the five turnovers against Ole Miss was just an anomaly. The Vols are coming off a huge win against Georgia and are well rested after a bye week. The Tide has won eight in a row in this series. A month ago, we thought an upset might be an option. Now? Not so sure.
3. Auburn at Arkansas: It’s a pretty safe bet that the loser of this game will win something – the award for being the SEC’s most disappointing team this season. Both schools came into the year with high expectations, but they’ve each been awful. Arkansas has already lost four times and runs the risk of missing out on bowl season. Auburn has lost just twice, but the Tigers have not looked good in a few wins, as well. Both are optimistic a turnaround is afoot, so we’ll see who’s ready to finish the season strong.
4. Western Kentucky at LSU: They may not ever say it publicly, but the LSU coaches have to be really concerned about this game. It’s got letdown written all over it. The Tigers are off next week and then play arch-rival Alabama the week after that, so there’s a huge risk of looking forward to rest and reward. Western Kentucky is good, especially on offense. The Hilltoppers are 6-1 and have scored 308 points. QB Brandon Doughty has already thrown for 2,709 yards. If LSU’s defense is already on vacation, look out. That said, the WKU defense isn’t much. RB Leonard Fournette could go nuts against them. A night of 200 yards? Or 250? Could be.
5. Kentucky at Mississippi State: There’s a lot of interest in this game from the standpoint that Kentucky has been talking all year about making progress and this is one of those games the Wildcats have to win if they want to continue to make noise. They had a chance last Thursday against Auburn and let it slip away. They can’t do the same thing here. Mississippi State will be tough to beat at home because the offense found some things last week against Louisiana Tech and Dak Prescott is playing well. This one’s likely to go right down to the wire.