Why Georgia vs. Missouri Is the Biggest Game of the SEC East This Season

Barrett SalleeSEC Football Lead WriterSeptember 6, 2012

Georgia head coach Mark Richt
Georgia head coach Mark RichtScott Cunningham/Getty Images

Watching the SEC East develop this season is going to be fascinating.

While everybody expects the Georgia vs. South Carolina game to be the game of the year in the division, it isn't.

It's this weekend's Georgia vs. Missouri game in Columbia, Mo., and it isn't even close.

The reason is simple, some team other than South Carolina is going to have to beat Georgia for any team other than Georgia to win the division.

The team most likely to do that is Missouri.

I know Georgia didn't look good in its opener vs. Buffalo, but the schedule is so simple that getting through with only one SEC loss still seems likely. South Carolina still has to go on the road to LSU and host Arkansas, both of which are likely loses for the Gamecocks.

Tennessee looked like a contender last week and Florida could get in the mix, but until proven otherwise, Georgia still is the class of the SEC East.

Georgia cornerback Sanders Commings is suspended for this weekend's matchup, wide receiver-turned-cornerback Malcolm Mitchell is nursing a sprained ankle and Mark Richt is still mum on possible suspensions to starting linebacker Alec Ogletree and safety Bacarri Rambo.

That's a lot of defensive firepower that could or will be out against the Tigers, and that's not good considering Missouri can put some points on the board.

James Franklin is a legit threat to dance near the 3,000-yard passing/1,000-yard rushing mark, Dorial Green-Beckham joins T.J. Moe in a talented wide receiving corps and Kendial Lawrence actually beat out Henry Josey for the top spot on the depth chart at running back last season before cracking his fibula before Week 2.

If you're a fan of any SEC East team not named Georgia, you are a Missouri Tiger fan this week.

The East is still a mystery regardless, but if Missouri beats Georgia this weekend, the entire division will be up for grabs.

In my best Bart Scott voice, "can't wait."