This Week in the SEC (Week 1)

This Week in the SEC (Week 1)

There is no better feeling in the world then when you wake up this Saturday, grab a cup of coffee, turn on College Gameday and realize…college football is back. And no other conference in the country has better college football than the SEC. However, it has been two years now since the SEC has won a title. They are looking to stop that small drought this year, and so many different teams could do it.


Power Rankings:

1)    Auburn
This week: vs Louisville (In Atlanta)
No team in the SEC has higher expectations than Auburn. Jeremy Johnson might be the next Cam Newton, and Will Muschamp will revive the Tiger defense. Louisville won’t be easy this week though.

2)    LSU
This week: vs McNeese State
Most people were absolutely stunned that Kirk Herbstreit picked LSU to win the SEC and Lee Corso pick them to win it all, but they’re on to something: Brandon Harris could be the guy that leads LSU to a title.
3)    Georgia
This week: vs Louisiana-Monroe
The Dawgs do have some questions at QB, but Nick Chubb will be enough to win them the East.

4)    Alabama
This week: vs #20 Wisconsin
Bama fans reading this are going ballistic that I would actually put their team at #4. My answer to that is: who’s your quarterback? We are only a few days away from the season opener and Nick Saban still hasn’t named a starter. Jacob Coker is the favorite, but nobody really knows if he will be any good.  

5)    Ole Miss
This Week: vs Tennessee-Martin
Along with Bama, the Rebels also have some questions at QB. However, if Chad Kelly wins the job and is consistent…watch out SEC.

6)    Arkansas
This week: vs UTEP
My sleeper pick to win the SEC: The Hogs.

7)    Tennessee
This week: vs Bowling Green
Butch Jones’ squad is looking to surprise, and with Joshua Dobbs at QB, they may do just that.

8)    Missouri
This week: vs Southeast Missouri State
Back-to-back SEC East titles for Mizzou, and Maty Mauk will give them a chance to make it three in a row. They better not lose to Southeast Missouri State though.

9)    Texas A&M
This week: vs Arizona State (In Houston)
The Aggies are set at QB with Kyle Allen, and at defensive coordinator with John Chavis. It’s going to take a little while for the Chief to repair that defense, so for right now A&M is at 9.

10)    Mississippi State
This week: at Southern Miss
If Mississippi State didn’t have Dak Prescott, they would be last on this list.

11)     South Carolina
This week: vs North Carolina
The battle of the Carolinas this weekend! Too bad both teams aren’t good.
12)      Florida
This week: vs New Mexico State
If the Gators lose to New Mexico State, they will be running Jim McElwain out of town faster than they did to Muschamp.

13)    Kentucky
This week: vs Louisiana-Lafayette
Forever a basketball school. Sorry Kentucky.

14)     Vanderbilt
This week: vs Western Kentucky
Basketball sch- oh wait. They aren’t even good at basketball anymore.


Game of the Week:

#3 Alabama vs #20 Wisconsin
Arlington, Texas
7:00 CT Saturday on ABC

Bama doesn’t have a starting quarterback at the moment, but that doesn’t stop them from being ranked 3rd in the AP poll. Wisconsin does have a starting QB, but not a very good one in Joel Stave. Wisconsin alum Paul Chryst will be making his Badger coaching debut, so he certainly has a lot pressure on him to be successful. A win against Bama would be a good start. This will be a matchup that showcases two tenacious defenses, and the stronger one should come out of top.

Even though nothing is official, it seems as if Jacob Coker will be under center for the Tide in the first snap on Saturday night. He did pretty well in the limited action he got last year, throwing for a 64% completion percentage with 4 TD’s and no picks. All of his appearances came off the bench in blowout games against bad teams though, so Wisconsin will be his toughest test yet. The Florida State transfer was expected to beat out Blake Sims for the job last year, but lost. It looks like he will get his chance this time around, but he has to produce right away against a solid Badger defense. With Wisconsin ranked 4th in the nation in pass defense in 2014, whoever is taking snaps for the Tide will have to thread the needle. You know Bama’s defense is always going to be good, and UW quarterback Joel Stave HAS to be able to protect the football. He threw for more interceptions than he did touchdowns last season, and he can’t afford to do that against the Crimson Tide. He seems a lot more confident coming into this season, so expect to see a whole new Stave on Saturday. If he’s the same Stave we got last season, Wisconsin is in deep trouble.

Both QB’s are going to be mediocre, so expect this game to come down to the running backs, as well as the defense. With Alabama losing Yeldon and Wisconsin losing Gordon, it will be interesting to see how their replacements perform. Both defenses are very solid, which is going to make low scoring. Bama has a slight edge on defense and with Derrick Henry as the running back, so I think that gets the job done for the Crimson Tide. Wisconsin will give it all they have, but it won’t be enough in Chryst’s coaching debut.
Score: Alabama 20, Wisconsin 13


Other Games to Watch:
#6 Auburn vs Louisville
Texas A&M vs #15 Arizona State

Upset Alert:
Louisiana-Lafayette over Kentucky
North Carolina over South Carolina
Vanderbilt over Western Kentucky (not a typo)


Twitter: @WScottCSM