Mates, I have been privileged to cowl SEC soccer for an extended, very long time. So, belief me once I let you know this has an opportunity to be one of the aggressive Saturdays I’ve ever seen on this convention.
There are six convention video games together with a High 10 matchup (No. 8 Arkansas at No. 2 Georgia), a High 12 matchup (No. 12 Ole Miss at No. 1 Alabama), and a High 10 staff (No. 10 Florida) going to an undefeated Kentucky (4-0).
And will probably be capped off with No. 22 Auburn (3-1) going to LSU (3-1). Auburn will likely be making an attempt to snap a 10-game dropping streak at Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge.
That is fairly compelling stuff.
So, in that spirit, listed below are 5 Burning Questions because the 2021 season strikes to the primary Saturday in October.
Now on to this week’s 5 Burning Questions on SEC soccer:
1. Alabama Coach Nick Saban is 23-0 in opposition to his former assistant coaches.
Will Lane Kiffin of Ole Miss be the primary Saban pupil to beat the trainer?
It should be robust. Kiffin, now in his second season at Ole Miss, rolled up over 600 yards of whole offense in opposition to Alabama in final season’s sport (a 63-48 loss) in Oxford. That received all people’s consideration.
However do not forget that the sport is at Bryant-Denny Stadium, the place Alabama is 84-5 because the 2008 season.
Three of these 5 losses got here to groups that had quarterbacks that went on to win the Heisman Trophy: Cam Newton (2010), Johnny Manziel (2012) and Joe Burrow (2019).
Ole Miss has a Heisman Trophy contender at quarterback in Matt Corral. If Ole Miss wins and Corral has a giant day, he’ll change into the clear favourite to win the Heisman.
2. It wasn’t that way back that Arkansas had a 20-game dropping streak in SEC video games. Now the Hogs are a High 10 staff taking part in in an enormous matchup between the Hedges in Athens. Sam Pittman has put the delight again into the Razorbacks. However……..
Can Arkansas rating sufficient factors to win in opposition to a protection that has given up just one offensive landing in 4 video games?
It actually is dependent upon the well being of Arkansas quarterback Okay.J. Jefferson, who tweaked his knee in opposition to Texas A&M final week however did return to the sport, a 20-10 win by the Hogs. If Jefferson is near 100% his mobility provides the Razorbacks an opportunity to make some massive performs, which they might want to preserve this sport shut.
3. Can Kentucky make some historical past in opposition to Florida?
Do not forget that in 2018, Kentucky beat Florida 27-16 in Gainesville to snap a 31-game dropping streak to the Gators. However Kentucky has not overwhelmed Florida in Lexington since Nov. 15, 1986 (10-3).
Whereas plenty of consideration is being paid to the high-profile video games in Athens and Tuscaloosa, the scene a Kroger Subject will likely be equally electrical.
It is an necessary sport for each groups, however it’s a essential sport for Florida (3-1), which misplaced to No. 1 Alabama (31-29) on Sept. 18. Florida can nonetheless win the SEC East by successful out. One other loss would make that very, very troublesome.
A Kentucky win can be big with LSU coming to Lexington subsequent week.
4. Talking of essential video games, is not Texas A&M dealing with a type of at residence in opposition to Mississippi State?
Completely. Here is why.
The Aggies (0-1 within the SEC), nonetheless have a shot to win the SEC West if they’ll run the desk, which would come with a sport with Alabama subsequent week in Faculty Station. Arkansas must lose twice however the Hogs could have the hardest schedule within the nation that features No. 2 Georgia and No. 1 Alabama, and No. 12 Ole Miss.
In brief, Texas A&M actually cannot afford one other convention loss and hope to win the West.
Mississippi State (2-2) misplaced a troublesome sport to LSU (28-25) final week.
5. Who’s going to start out at quarterback for Auburn in opposition to LSU? And who’s going to complete?
Auburn was in bother final week at residence in opposition to Georgia State, trailing 29-24 late the fourth quarter. Coach Bryan Harsin pulled quarterback Bo Nix and inserted switch TJ Finley, who rallied the staff to a 34-24 victory.
So does Harsin change Nix, a legacy whose father (Stan) performed at Auburn? Or does he go together with Finley who transferred from-you guessed it-LSU?
The sport is in Baton Rouge and will probably be attention-grabbing to see how Finley is obtained. This has an opportunity for some actual drama.