Auburn vs. Ole Miss: Rebels and Commodores Are Auburn's Only Shot at an SEC Win

Brett MixonContributor IOctober 12, 2012

AUBURN, AL - OCTOBER 6:  Clint Moseley #15 of the Auburn Tigers hands off the ball to teammate Mike Blakely #22 during a game against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Jordan-Hare Stadium on October 6, 2012 in Auburn, Alabama.  The Razorbacks defeated the Tigers 24-7.  (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Even the greatest oddsmaker (no, Danny Sheridan, not you) would not have had Auburn going winless in the SEC in 2012. But here we are. 

At the risk of stating the obvious, if Auburn does not get a victory in its next two games against Ole Miss or Vanderbilt, the Tigers will be winless in conference play in 2012.

Should they win those games?

Yes. Auburn is considerably more talented at every position than both Ole Miss and Vanderbilt.

Will they win those games?

Auburn has shown nothing this season to indicate that they will. Following the game against Vanderbilt on Oct. 20, Auburn has three SEC games remaining. Texas A&M comes to Auburn on Oct. 27. Georgia visits the Plains on Nov. 10. Auburn goes to Tuscaloosa on Nov. 24 to face Alabama in the Iron Bowl.

Texas A&M is currently 5-1 and has been a surprise under first-year head coach Kevin Sumlin.

The Aggies are averaging 44.6 points per game and have the fifth best defense in the conference. The type of spread offense that Texas A&M runs is the same type of offense that has given the Auburn defense fits all season long.

A&M’s freshman QB Johnny Manziel is a strong candidate for SEC freshman of the year. Manziel has ran for seven TD’s and thrown for 11. Take a look at Manziel's stats so far this year. 

The Aggies will be coming to Auburn after a very physical and likely emotional game against LSU on Oct. 20.

Texas A&M was predicted to struggle in their first year of SEC play. Instead, Auburn will be the one that struggles to find a way to win in this matchup.

Auburn renews its annual rivalry with Georgia when the Bulldogs come to town on Nov. 10.

This rivalry has been one-sided in recent years. Georgia has won five of the last six games. Auburn’s lone win in that stretch came in 2010.

Georgia’s defense is not playing at the same level it was in 2011, but it would be a safe bet that a high school defense could stop the Auburn offense right now.

The “Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry” has had its crazy moments and its share of upsets. Auburn would need a lot of things to go right to spring a big upset as it will likely be a heavy underdog heading into the contest. 

As usual, following UGA, Auburn’s next and last conference game of the season will be the annual Iron Bowl. It will be played in Tuscaloosa this year where Auburn has been highly successful.

Many of the Alabama players remember what happened the last time that Auburn came into Bryant-Denny Stadium in 2010. With Alabama’s fantastic defense and Auburn’s sluggish offense, an upset over the Tide is not likely to happen.

The last time that Auburn did not have a conference win in a season came in 1980. Head coach Doug Barfield was dismissed following that season. 

As we said earlier this week, this is a big game for Gene Chizik and the Auburn football program. 

Being winless in the SEC two years after winning a national championship and with top recruiting classes can not be defended.