SEC Dominates Week Four's Top Games
If you are looking to not do anything this Saturday besides sit on in front of your high definition TV, make sure you keep three letters in mind: S-E-C, because that's where all the action will be in the college football world.
First of all, let's go over all the marquee games this weekend not in the SEC.
No. 18 Wake Forest vs. No. 24 Florida State
Notre Dame vs. Michigan State
Miami (Fla.) vs. Texas A&M
Now let's go over all the big games involving SEC teams.
No. 3 Georgia vs. Arizona State
No. 4 Florida vs. Tennessee
No. 6 LSU vs. No. 10 Auburn
No. 9 Alabama vs. Arkansas
Let's start with Georgia at Arizona State. Since the game is in Tempe this weekend, the Sun Devils have a chance to upset the Bulldogs.
Arizona State needs this win big time because they are coming off a loss to UNLV, but that doesn't mean the Bulldogs will run all over them. The Dawgs themselves are coming off a nail-biting win over South Carolina, which they could have possibly lost if not for a goal-line fumble by Mike Davis and an inefficient South Carolina offense.
Both teams come off less than impressive performances against lesser teams, so it's going to be the team that comes out of the gate early and gets quick first quarter scores that is going to win the football game.
Prediction: Georgia 31, Arizona State 17
In the Florida-Tennessee game this weekend in Knoxville, the trend continues of top ranked teams playing in tough road games. Tennessee is coming off a Week One loss to UCLA and a win last week against overmatched UAB.
There is a catch to Tennessee's play this season: the performance of Jonathon Crompton. Crompton is now starting after patiently waiting behind Erik Ainge, but Phil Fulmer may be losing patience with Crompton because he has been inconsistent throwing the football, with 429 yards and only two touchdowns (both to Gerald Jones vs. UAB).
As for Florida all they have done this year is start where they left off before the Capital One Bowl, which is with an offense that can score at anytime. The key to this game will be if Tennessee can contain Florida's offense and get big momentum shifts early to get the Neyland Stadium crowd into the game to try and rattle the Gators.
Prediction: Florida 35, Tennessee 14
Next is the LSU-Auburn game, which will a good old-fashioned SEC defensive struggle. The Auburn defense is flat-out fast and flat-out good, and it can shut down anybody in the nation. With an LSU offense that has been playing cupcakes and dealing with hurricanes, this could be a really close game like last year.
Once again the higher ranked team is playing on the road, but this time the higher ranked team faces a quality opponent. The key to the game will be if Auburn's offense can find some efficiency and points to hold off the LSU attack.
Prediction: Auburn 17, LSU 13
As for Alabama-Arkansas, this game will simply depend on one factor to decide the outcome of the game. If Alabama plays like they did against Tulane, they will get beat—but if they play like they did against Clemson and Western Kentucky, the backups could be in sometime during the third quarter.
The only way Arkansas has a chance is if they get a very early score and if Casey Dick protects the ball and makes good choices.
Prediction: Alabama 38, Arkansas 14
In case you haven't noticed, there are games being played with teams not from SEC country. One of those matchups is Michigan State against Notre Dame. This could be a huge boost of confidence for an already good Irish defense if they can hold Javon Ringer to under 100 yards, which is a tall task.
Prediction: Notre Dame 24, Michigan State 17
This is also a big weekend for the ACC. In one game Wake Forest battles conference rival Florida State in a matchup that will spring the winning team to a conference title run.
On the Wake Forest side of the ball, Riley Skinner needs to be careful against a fast and ball-hawking Seminole defense that can force turnovers. Although the Seminoles have clobbered only non-conference cupcakes, they should be ready to play against the Demon Deacons.
Prediction: Florida State 21, Wake Forest 16
The other big game for the ACC is really a redemption game as Texas A&M seeks revenge against Miami (Fla). Last year the Aggies were ranked, and the Hurricanes came out and flat-out beat them.
Now as this game goes back to Texas, the Hurricanes need to come out ready to play. If they do, Robert Marve and the Hurricane offense should be able to put up points against a struggling Aggie defense.
Prediction: Miami (Fla) 21, Texas A&M 7
This weekend is without a doubt going to be the best weekend of college football to date, and I know I will not be moving from the beginning of College GameDay to the end of the Georgia and Arizona State game.
If you're in doubt of which games to watch this Saturday, remember one thing: The best football in the world is played deep in the heart of the Confederacy.
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