South Carolina, Vanderbilt Top SEC Week Six Grades

The Dead Guy SECAnalyst IOctober 6, 2008

South Carolina: A

This is how Gamecock fans have been waiting to see a Spurrier-coached SC team play. Out of nowhere, QB Chris Smelley throws for 330-plus yards, and the reliable defense held the Rebels to just three points in the second half and took advantage of the three OM miscues. Easily their best effort of the season.

Vanderbilt: A-

Another one of those head-scratchers that Vanderbilt has mastered this year. They actually outgained an SEC opponent for the first time this year, though against this year’s Auburn team, that’s not saying much.

Arkansas: B+

The Hogs were actually competitive for three quarters, which is more than they can say about their recent games. This is certainly Petrino’s first moral victory to go along with his two moral defeats he opened the season with. I’m not sure how much better the Hogs could have played in this one.

Kentucky: B+

Went toe-to-toe with the No. 2 Tide in a ridiculously lopsided rivalry and nearly walked out with a victory. This weekend’s game with South Carolina will be a better indicator of how good UK is than this game was.

Florida: B

On the plus side, they rolled up 500-plus yards of offense and held the Hogs to seven points. But they also committed 12 penalties and didn’t put the game away until the fourth. Probably looking ahead to the big showdown with LSU.

Alabama: C

Came out and smacked UK in the mouth in the first quarter, then really didn’t do much else the rest of the game. While some of that goes to an inspired effort by the ‘Cats D, a lot of it is on the Tide. The penalties—10 for 92 yards—were very surprising, as one of the trademarks of this team has been discipline.

Ole Miss: C-

The game started out as well as possible for the Rebels, up 14-3 after the first quarter. After that, the turnovers came out, which has been an all-too-familiar theme for OM this year. The offense went stagnant in the second half, and the vulnerable secondary was torched by Chris Smelley. Not a very strong effort following last week’s big win.

Tennessee: D-

Yeah, the Vols beat Northern Illinois by four. They had nine first downs and less than 230 yards of offense. If not for an above-average defense, the Vols would be Arkansas.

Auburn: F

Just an ugly, ugly game from Auburn. It’s not even worth the effort to come up with different words to describe that “offense.” Missing a PAT is icing on the cake.