College Football Week 11 SEC Review: South Carolina, Florida, Texas A&M, LSU and More


South Carolina 38, Arkansas 20
NO ONE CARES.  I like just about everything about Nick Saban.  His machine-like focus on the game and preparation for it, his disgust for imperfection and anything that wastes his time, and his lack of concern about what anyone thinks of him. 

But, his upcoming verbal assault on the hurry-up/spread offenses, and you know it's coming, will test our one-way relationship.  And if he figures out a way in the offseason to stop these offenses, thus sucking some fun out of football, we may not be on speaking terms anymore.

Florida 27, Louisiana-Lafayette 20
It's a shame Texas A&M doesn't get to play Florida again just for the shots of Will Muschamp rupturing blood vessels when his defense gets flagged for too many men on the field or has to use a timeout to prevent a penalty.  But it's also probably for the best because Florida football does not need to appear on TV for a long time.

Muschamp's team has achieved what I assumed was impossible in that they're 9-1 and completely unwatchable.  Usually if a team is unwatchable, that record is reversed.  Never let it be said that Muschamp is not an innovator.

Missouri 51, Tennessee 48
According to the Tennessee beat writers, it's only a matter of time before Dooley is given money to not coach at Tennessee anymore.  However, I remain hopeful he'll get the Houston Nutt/Joker Phillips treatment and be allowed to finish the season so he can have another chance of losing to a Kentucky team quarterbacked by another wide receiver.

BREAKING:  Alabama has attempted another pass with a shaky quarterback despite the strength of their team being a dominant offensive line and a running back averaging 5.9 yards a carry.

Texas A&M 29, Alabama 24
Other than Doug Nussmeier calling the exact opposite of Alabama's offensive philosophy under Saban, the two issues that ultimately sent thousands of Alabama fans into cursing fits at their televisions (HOPEFULLY RECORDED AND DISPLAYED ON YOUTUBE) were the Alabama defense's inability to keep Johnny Manziel from piling up rushing yards (92 yards on 18 carries) and Manziel's ability to throw accurately down the field.

To Alabama's credit, Manziel only had 18 yards rushing after the first quarter, but the first quarter was a disaster as they let him run for 74 yards on their way to being down 20-0.  After somewhat righting the ship, they kept him inside the pocket and got decent pressure on him, but most importantly did not let him run where he wanted to go.

Unfortunately for Alabama, while in the pocket, he didn't make any bad decisions and made some terrific throws, some into tight coverage, others into poor coverage.  Combined with a start that had Gary Danielson on the verge of dry-heaving, it was too much for the Alabama offense, which eventually wrecked itself with two fourth quarter turnovers.

Texas A&M needed Manziel to play a smart game in which he still dominated a defense.  Though he didn't put up ALL THE YARDS AND POINTS like we've seen him do before, he didn't throw interceptions, which is usually brings on death against Alabama.

Now begins the speculation that Saban Ball has finally run into a problem it may not be able to solve.  While this style of football offers a much better chance to beat the Saban model than the fools who have been trying to out-Saban Saban, you still have to have a dynamic quarterback that can make plays by exploring the freelancing space.

Georgia 38, Auburn 0
I will forever hate myself for not putting every dollar I had on Georgia at -15.  If I had, I'd be writing this from the deck of my villa on a private island somewhere.  FRESHEN UP THIS DRINK, WELL-PAID STAFF MEMBER. 

No, that's just silly, I'd never write this again.

LSU 37, Mississippi State 17
State did a fairly nice job against LSU's running game (119 yards), but Zach Mettenberger appears to have figured out how playing quarterback works, especially on the drive right before halftime that put LSU up 20-10.  LSU had the ball on its own 29 with 48 seconds left and Mettenberger produced a touchdown on 4 plays in 35 seconds.

So, to repeat, Zach Mettenberger, yes, THE Zach Mettenberger, used 3 completed passes to cover 71 yards in 35 seconds.  Now, bad Mississippi State defense may have had something to do with that (Chris Wilson seems like a crowd favorite!), but still, Mettenberger against the clock, with a coach who has notoriously bad clock management skills, ripped straight through a defense whose strength is allegedly pass defense.

Always remember that the world, when it wants to be, is a terribly confusing and frightening place.

Oh, and State's lack of a running game (47 yards) was hurt by a late scratch of starting running back LaDarius Perkins.  If a writer worked in a postgame question in which he asked Dan Mullen about three straight losses AND details on the injury, 50 gold stars to that person.

Vanderbilt 27, Ole Miss 26
Keys for coughing up a 23-6 lead?  Not being able to run and a secondary that is HURRIEDLY regressing to its talent level.  Vanderbilt's offense should have been nothing but deep passes because they would have spent the night watching the yards and points categories explode. 

And it didn't help that the Ole Miss offense, which did amazingly well moving the ball considering we were forced to throw 50 times, pulled a series of Noel Mazzones when it got inside the 10.  Ole Miss had FIVE first and goals and scored two touchdowns and three field goals.  If we turn one of those field goals into a touchdown, we win.

Vanderbilt did a nice job of crushing Ole Miss' run game and hanging around, as their defense didn't let Ole Miss get a kill shot.  Then it was only a matter of time before they burned Ole Miss for a late score.  UGH, there is nothing worse than watching a game and seeing the writing on the wall.  You fight it, but you know, DEFEAT IS INEVITABLE.

This result means Ole Miss will have to find one win against either LSU (NOPE) or Mississippi State to become bowl eligible, which means two more weeks of EXCEPTIONAL stress and putting your hopes in a team that looks like it's running out of gas.

Double Your Paycheck Picks
Week:  5-2 (.714)
Season:  45-38-1 (.535)

2012 Jevan Snead Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Quarterbacking Failure Leaderboard
Awarded to the SEC quarterback who throws the most interceptions during the regular season

1.  Tyler Bray  10
1.  Bo Wallace  10
1.  Tyler Wilson  10
4.  Kiehl Frazier  8
5.  Aaron Murray  7
5.  James Franklin  7
7.  Johnny Manziel  6
7.  Connor Shaw  6
9.  Corbin Berkstresser  5
10.  Maxwell Smith  4
10.  Zach Mettenberger  4
10.  Tyler Russell  4
13.  Brandon Allen  3
13.  Morgan Newton  3
13.  Jordan Rodgers  3
13.  Clint Moseley  3
13.  Jeff Driskel  3
18.  Jalen Whitlow  2
18.  AJ McCarron  2
18.  Jonathan Wallace  2
21.  Dylan Thompson  1

Arkansas at Mississippi State
Will Tyler Wilson continue his late-season climb to the top of the Jevan Snead Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Quarterbacking Failure leaderboard?  Will Dan Mullen collect his elusive second win over SEC West teams not named Ole Miss?  Will John L. Smith do something, anything, that is old school John L. Smith?

Ole Miss at LSU
Will Ole Miss make Zach Mettenberger look like he's REALLY figured out how to play quarterback?  Will Ole Miss find a way to keep it close, creating excruciating tension, then have LSU casually win the game?  Will Les Miles, just to keep a streak alive, mangle the clock management at the end of a half?

Tennessee at Vanderbilt
Seriously, these are the best three games of the week.  F-MINUS, SCHEDULE MAKERS.

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