Louisiana State University vs. University of Florida (+1.5); O/U: 47
Give me a dollar you can keep all the change, all we really want is a Quarter Back.
L.S.U: Don’t beat yourselves up Bayou Bengal fans, Auburn is a Great team and may very well find their way back into the National Championship game, but you have to play a little better to beat a Florida team that has a top 15 ranked rush defense (103 yards per game). While Florida’s quarterback problems have been highly chronicled in the news this week, L.S.U. is also dealing with problems at the same position. My advice, start the guy with experience (Anthony Jennings) over the freshman, Brandon Harris, who was thrown into the Tiger’s den with a dismal performance against Auburn (3 for 14, 58 yards). Game managers are an underrated commodity in college football these days, and all you have to do to beat Florida is not beat yourselves (Florida is already beating each other up). So, as bad as the L.S.U passing game is the good news is that Florida cannot throw the ball either and L.S.U has a top 10 pass defense (153.5 yards per game) so, expect a low scoring affair with over 100 combined rushing attempts from both teams. Stack the box Tigers and dare the Gators to throw, if you do that you will come out on top.
UF: Well Gator fans you found a new quarterback in Treon Harris, as he took over for Jeff Driskel and brought new life to the team in the 3rd quarter comeback against the Volunteers. However, Treon was accused of sexual assault early Sunday and a Gainesville Police Department forensic crime unit truck was spotted Monday outside of the Residence Hall where the alleged assault took place. So while the GPD searches for seamen the Gators continue to search for a quarterback. Maybe you will find one in Skylar Mornhinweg, the redshirt sophomore who is assumed to take Treon’s place on the depth chart. But, I don’t think he’s teammates agree because as Mornhinweg and Defensive Lineman Gerald Willis fought each other outside of Ben Hill Griffin and both sustained facial injuries and spent time at the local E.R. Both men signed affidavits not to press charges against each other. Let’s see if the Gators can show some fight inside the stadium on Saturday, but don’t count on it.
Chip’s Pick: Take L.S.U. (-1.5) and the Under (47); L.S.U 24 Florida 13.
BREAKING: Treon Harris's accuser has dropped all charges against him. He has been reinstated by the University but Rivals.com reports that Harris will not play today. It's safe to roll with Chip's pick. - Dave
Don’t forget to pack a Sack lunch.
UGA:* Speaking of game managers, one game manager (Hutson Mason) is on the hot seat. If it wasn’t for Todd Gurley the Dawgs could very well be 2-3, but as it is they are 4-1 with a big game in Columbia this Saturday. Mark Richt and Mike Bobo are giving Redshirt Freshman Brice Ramsey more reps during practice and brought him in during the 1st quarter against Vanderbilt last weekend for a series. While his job isn’t in jeopardy yet, the Dawgs are in unfamiliar territory as Hutson Mason will most likely be the only U.G.A quarterback to start more than 7 games to go undrafted since Mike Bobo in 1997. Mason hasn’t completed Mark Richt’s favorite passing play (the back shoulder fade) all season, but he also hasn’t had Malcom Mitchell or Justin Scott-Wesley arguably UGA’s top recievers all season long. They both “played” against Vanderbilt but saw limited action as it was likely a warm up game for both players, so expect both receivers to see more action against Missouri. While Missouri has a great pass rush, their rush defense is not as spectacular with Indiana rushing for over 200 yards a few weeks ago, so if UGA’s offensive line can limit Missouri to 1 or 2 sacks they have a very good chance of winning, but if Gurley doesn’t rush for over 150 yards and score at least twice the Dawgs are in trouble. Expect a lot of short passes and screens to Gurley, Isiah Mckenzie, and perhaps Scott-Wesley with a heavy dose of the Gurley Man.
Mizzou: Georigia’s secondary is awful and Missouri likes to the sling the ball, or do they? The Tigers have thrown the ball 160 times this year and rushed the ball 192 times, showing they are more of a balanced attack than most people have come to expect from a Gary Pinkel coached team. Missouri’s keys to the game is rush the ball enough to keep UGA’s tenacious pass rush of Leonard Floyd and Jordan Jenkins from pressuring Maty Mauck who is notoriously bad against pressure. However, when your bring 5 plus every snap as UGA intends to do that leaves 5 to 6 secondary players alone on islands and that is where UGA is vulnerable. Expect Pinkel to keep a running back next to Mauk, call a lot of roll out passes and maybe even bring a Tight End (and yes Mizzouri does have a TE on the roster his name is Sean Culkin) to help with pressure. At the end of the day I believe you can look at one stat to see who wins this game, sacks. Whoever sacks the opposing quarterback more will be victorious.
*Disclaimer: I was born a UGA fan and will die a UGA fan, but hopefully I provide an unbiased look at SEC football.
Chip’s Pick: I am hesitating but I suggest you take UGA (-3), what I am not hesitating about is taking the Over (60). Georgia is sixth in the nation in scoring (45 per game) and Mizzou is no slouch at 34.6 per game; UGA 45 Missouri 41.
BREAKING: Todd Gurley fot popped for selling his likeness to the tune of $400 for 8 autographs or something like that. He has been suspended indefinitely. Check back before Saturday to see how long he will be suspended. What we do know is that Gurley is not playing this week. In other bad news, Sony Michal is out with a shoulder injury. This means that freshman stand out Nick Chubb and Brendan Douglass will carry the load in Georgia's run heavy offense. I think MIzzou wins this one by 20. Missouri 44 UGA 24. - Dave
The Kiffin Kurse?
Bama: Alabama fans I know you are pissed, but don’t be because nobody in the SEC will go undefeated this year and you still have more national championships than teeth. This week Bama comes back in a BIG way as long as they don’t look past the Razorbacks they should come up with a win. While Arkansas brings in the 7th ranked rushing offense (316.6 per game) the Crimson Tide have the 6th ranked rushing defense so not much has changed in that respect. Saban came into Tuscaloosa with his winning formula, an offensive line that could put a Shoney’s out of business, large running backs, and a great rush defense. Saban knows if a college football team cannot run the ball then they will most likely not win the game. But what is new is the offensive under Lane Kiffin, and many people are saying the Kiffin Kurse has hit Alabama harder than Ebola has hit the West Coast of Africa. I am not ready to call it a Kurse just yet, because other than a few key special team plays Alabama almost beat a very good Ole Miss team in the biggest and loudest game the Rebels have played in 50 years. Also, all this talk about Saban not giving Kiffin free reign over the offense I have one comment. You are fucking crazy. (Sorry, this is a PG-13 blog and the Motion Picture Association of America allows one F-Bomb per PG-13 movie.) If you thought Saban hired Kiffin to completely revamp an Alabama offense that has won 3 National Championships in 5 years you don’t know much about football. I am sure when Kiffin was hired to call plays for one of the most prestigious football teams in the world he knew very well he would have adapt a more run heavy philosophy. Saban is not an offensive coach, he coaches defense and always has, so he hired Kiffin to add a spark to his passing game and to add some sprinkles to his vanilla offense.
Arkansas: The Razorbacks looked good in their loss to Texas A&M, but Texas A&M is looking less impressive with a three score loss to Mississippi State and with the downfall of South Carolina. However, they can run the ball although it will be tough against Alabama’s great defense. The Razorbacks are proud and the stadium will be loud but expect Arkansas to lose by at least two touchdowns. It’s a big recruit day so don’t get beaten too bad Arkansas.
Chip’s Pick: Alabama (-10) and the Under (56); Alabama 35 Arkansas 20
Auburn University vs. Mississippi State University (+3) O/U:63
I gotta fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell!
Auburn: Man, I sure do love the veer option. Think I’m talking about Georgia Tech? Nope. Just because Auburn runs 99% of their plays out of the shotgun does not mean they aren’t running one of the oldest offensive scheme in football history. This War Eagle, Gus Malzahn, coached offense would make Pop Warner proud as it infuses aspects of Warner’s Single Wing or “wildcat” offense and merges other aspects of the veer option. Nick Marshall is a half back who can throw and he has mastered this fast paced but pretty basic offense, and because of this the coaching staff has let him take more shots downfield. Auburn averages 229.2 yards passing per game which is what makes this “option” offense so unique. You cannot stack 8 in the box because when you do one of those 3 receivers streaking down the field will be open. Auburn dominates the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball with a top 15 rushing offense (268 yards per game) and a rush defense that ranks 11th in the nation (100.8 yards per game), so if Mississippi State wants to win this game they are going to have win the battle upfront and hope that nobody gets behind their questionable secondary. Auburn should win this game because they are a better team and because they have more experience, but don’t be surprised if this game comes down to the wire. The tiger’s only road game this year was against Kansas State in a very loud and hostile Thursday night game, and they almost loss. Mississippi State is better than Kansas State and the cowbells will be out in full force. It will be hard of Auburn to make their audibles at the line of scrimmage, so the Bulldogs have a chance to catch Auburn in plays they aren’t comfortable with. If Marshall can weather the crowd then Auburn should win, but while everyone talks about Auburn’s “unique” and high powered offense it will be the defense that win’s the game for the tigers. If Prescott is contained so will the Bulldog’s offense.
Miss St: Man I sure do love the veer option. That’s right these two offenses are exact mirrors of one another, so I wouldn’t be surprised if both teams gave their practice squads break and had a good ol’ fashioned ones vs. ones scrimmage. While the bulldogs offense is more centered around the Quarterback, Dak Prescott, than Auburn’s they still use very similar blocking schemes and option rushes. Mullen is a protégé of Urban Meyer and followed him Bowling Green to Florida before landing the gig with the bulldogs. Pop’s or Urban’s single wing offense loves big strong quarterbacks who can guarantee 3 yards every carry and also throw the ball 50 yards downfield, and Mullen has found one of these guys at Mississippi State. Prescott leads the team in carries (85) and has also thrown for over 1200 yards this year, making him an early Heisman contender. The key for stopping the Bulldog’s is getting them in 2nd and 3rd and long, so to neutralize Prescott’s running threat; because 2nd and 6 and 3rd and 4 are easily convertible situations with Prescott only having to lower a shoulder for a first down. While the Bulldogs should be able to score on Auburn their defense may not be as fortunate. Keeping Auburn’s rushing attack under wraps with their top ten rush defense (98.2 per game) shouldn’t be a problem, but keeping Marshall from throwing the ball all over the field is another issue. Mississippi State is giving up 328.2 yards passing per game and as I stated above this Auburn team can beat you deep. If the Bulldog’s want to win they need a drunk and rowdy student section, a Heisman performance out of Dak Prescott, but more importantly they need to keep Marshall under 200 yards passing. If all of these things happen then it will be a happy day in Starkville, but just be happy you got ESPN’s College Gameday to come to town and worry about being national championship relevant next year.
Chip’s Pick: Take Auburn (-3) and as much as everyone loves a shootout take the Under (63) because these defenses are better than people think; Auburn 34 Mississippi State 24.
University of Mississippi vs. Texas Agricultural & Mechanical University (-2) O/U: 63.
Ole Miss: Why did Ole Miss beat Alabama? Because their defense is real, and it is really really good. Ninth overall in passing defense at 152.4 per game and good enough to keep Blake Sims from consistently moving down the field, the Rebels should have no trouble with Kenny Hill and the Aggies 5th ranked passing attack (395.2 per game). However, this is unfamiliar territory for Ole Miss as they go into the 12th Man as a top ranked team and Vegas shows their concerns as well by making them the underdog. Well the Rebel’s are good and can beat anybody in the nation with their defense which is 6th best in the nation in overall yards allowed and 2nd in points allowed. Also, they have Bo Wallace who can sling the ball with the best of them and Texas A&M isn’t the best of them. With just a mediocre defense and an offense that doesn’t control the clock well I can’t for the life of me wonder why Ole Miss is the underdog. The 12th man is worth a couple points true, but that means Vegas thinks this game is a push on a neutral site and I don’t agree. The Rebels have the best defense in the SEC and they can put up on points through the air where A&M looks vulnerable. The only team that can beat Ole Miss on Saturday is Ole Miss, so get out of your way Reb and let Bo go.
A&M: I haven’t seen a top 15 team with only one loss take as much of a betting as the Aggies have the past week. While it is true the win against South Carolina does not look nearly as impressive as it once did, this team can still score points. We all saw what can happen if you let Kenny Hill have time to dissect a secondary and the key is getting pressure on Hill and forcing the Aggies into predictable passing situations. While A&M loves to throw the ball they still have a top 50 rushing attack of 188 yards per game, but they are only effective rushing the ball on first and second downs when teams are defending against the deep throw. Like I said above Ole Miss’s defense is superb and is a lot better than the Mississippi State and Arkansas defenses that kept the Aggies in check, but listen A&M can score in a blink of an eye and if their defense can force Bo Wallace into some ill-advised throws and force some turnover’s they got a chance. Practice your cheers A&M fans because if anybody needs another man on the field this week it’s the Aggies.
Chip’s Pick: Take the Rebels and the points (+2) and take them early because I wouldn’t be surprised if this was a pick em’ by Saturday. Also take the Over (63) because even though the Rebels defense is great I expect a few touchdown’s in garbage time when this game gets a little out of reach; Ole Miss 41 Texas A&M 28