As we near the midway point of the SEC season, there’s been plenty to talk about. The Auburn Tigers have looked both terrible and great at the same time, the Florida Gators have had a resurgence that few saw coming, especially after week one and the Alabama Crimson Tide look better than last year in many senses after fear of a national championship hangover and several losses to the NFL.
With two of the biggest SEC games of the year on this weekend’s plate, we found it entirely appropriate to examine all of these weekend’s games and speculate where it will leave the winners and losers in the polls after everything is all said and done.
Arkansas began the year with plenty of expectation, but few could anticipate a slide of this proportion. On the other hand, when ESPN picked Auburn to finish 6-6 at the beginning of the season, many in Auburn scoffed at the idea, only to look now at their remaining schedule and wonder if they’ll even reach that mark. The good news for Arkansas is that they will score wins, but they won’t get one from this week. Auburn has shown a tremendous toughness on defense, and Kiehl Frazier can somehow inspire his offense to play with the same fire, so Auburn can still make a bowl game when it’s all said and done.
Arkansas Poll Change: N/A
Auburn Poll Change: N/A
It’s been an epic start as far as the Bulldogs are concerned, going 4-0 to begin the year for only the second time since 1965. Kentucky had an monumental meltdown early in the season, falling to the Western Kentucky Hilltopers after losing to the Louisville Cardinals, losing both of their in-state games this season. But the Wildcats showed great life against the South Carolina Gamecocks which could give them incredible confidence as far as playing in tough games the rest of the season. It won’t be enough to beat the Bulldogs, who will keep their magical season rolling.
Winner: Mississippi State
Mississippi State Poll Change: No. 20 to No. 17
Kentucky Poll Change: N/A
This is the first part of massive SEC doubleheader that will set the table for the rest of the year. Florida has shown that they are able to compete, and I’m sure we all remember their ability to pull out the game in Knoxville and make it look more dominating on the scoreboard than it really was. LSU, on the other hand, has looked downright terrible. The week after barely squeezing past Auburn, the actually trailed the lowly Towson Tigers at home in the second quarter and never really pulled away until late in the third. With this game being in The Swamp, there’s no way LSU has a chance.
LSU Poll Change: No. 4 to No. 15
Florida Poll Change: No. 10 to No. 7
Texas A&M has looked really good after falling at home to Florida a few weeks ago, and as we’re learning, Florida is no slouch. Ole Miss’s wins have been over some pretty poor competition, but their losses haven’t been blowouts by any means. Although the Rebels likely don’t have enough mustard to top the Aggies, this game will be a decent watch.
Winner: Texas A&M
Texas A&M Poll Change: RV to No. 23
Ole Miss Poll Change: N/A
South Carolina is having the season they’ve been dreaming of, and now they have all the attention. ESPN College Gameday will be live from Columbia and they have a primetime slot on ESPN to showcase what Conner Shaw and the Gamecocks are capable of. But Aaron Murray didn’t make the trip for television or any artificial attention. Murray has already garnered plenty of notice for the Heisman Trophy and rightfully so. Add Murray to a Georgia defense back at full strength and proving after last week that it’s not all about Jarvis Jones–you can take this one to the bank for the Dawgs.
Georgia Poll Change: No. 5 to No. 3
South Carolina Poll Change: No. 6 to No. 11
Someone here has to get their first SEC win of the season, and if it’s Missouri, it will be their first SEC win ever. Vanderbilt started the year with a tough loss to a very good South Carolina team and then lost by two possessions to a tough Northwestern Wildcats team. Missouri hasn’t looked very impressive with their spread offense, but playing two seventh-ranked teams as well as two of the best defensive ends in the country in Jarvis Jones and Jadeveon Clowney haven’t helped them look very good. Missouri will do enough to win in front of their home crowd and get their first SEC win.
Vanderbilt Poll Change: N/A
Missouri Poll Change: N/A