Which teams should panic after week one?
The SEC’s first full slate of football is under our belts, and we saw the good, the bad and the ugly this weekend.
How does the old adage go? You’re never as good as you think after a win, and never as bad as you think after a loss?
Well, we don’t live by adages, so which teams and its fan bases should panic after what they saw in week one?
We like Derek Mason. He’s a good guy, and he has awesome business cards. But the Commodores looked atrocious on Thursday night against Temple. They committed seven turnovers and looked completely lost on offense while playing one big game of musical-quarterbacks. Vandy fans were optimistic after back-to-back nine win seasons and bowl appearances and Mason was seen as a great hire. We’re not doubting that, and there’s still a good chance he can turn this thing around, but after what we witnessed Thursday night, you have to be more worried.
2. South Carolina
The Gamecocks were playing the opening game of the season on national TV at home with its 18-game home winning streak on the line. And we’re still not sure whether they actually showed up or not. It couldn’t have been a more disappointing performance from Steve Spurrier’s club who was a preseason favorite to win the SEC and maybe even the SEC Championship and earn a berth in the College Football Playoff. South Carolina plays host to East Carolina this week before a must-win home date with Georgia in two weeks. Gamecock faithful will be on edge, most certainly.
We saw a very average Crimson Tide team on Saturday at the Georgia Dome against West Virginia. Bama fans: this team will lose a game. Perhaps two. Maybe even three. That performance on Saturday would’ve been a losing one to Auburn, LSU and Texas A&M. The defense has some gaping holes and the offensive playcalling was even more conservative than normal with Blake Sims at the helm. Yes, the defense gave up just 16 points to an up-tempo offense, but we saw the youth and inexperience rear its head and the Tide made some blatantly fundamental mistakes that Nick Saban-coached teams don’t make.
4. Ole Miss
Yes, the Rebels won by 22. But they looked throughly unimpressive in doing so. The defense played lights out, and that’s really the only takeaway from Thursday night’s game against a worse Boise St. team. Bo Wallace has two seasons under his belt in a league that is most new quarterbacks, and Wallace showed the same inconsistencies and made the same mistakes for which he’s come to be known. If he continues to play that way, it will be up to the vaunted Rebel defense to keep them in games all year in hopes that Wallace makes a play or two. That’s not a way to win the SEC West.
The Tigers looked very average against FCS South Dakota State. Maty Mauk missed open receivers and was inaccurate at times. The Mizzou defense gave up some big plays to the Jackrabbits’ skill position players. It was a game that you thought the Tigers would dominate but that just wasn’t the case. They looked flat, at times, for their season-opener as reigning SEC East champs. We could be looking at an eight, maybe nine win team in the other Columbia.