SEC Bloggers Week Three Review
Week Three under the gun
Each Monday, CFN’s SEC Bloggers put the previous weekend under the microscope, looking for the Lucky 7
BG is Billy Gomila, BH is Brian Harbach, GH is Gabe Harris , RM is Russ Mitchell, and BS is Barrett Sallee.
1. OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Ryan Mallett; QB, Arkansas
BG: Ryan Mallett; QB, Arkansas – Last year I was critical of Mallett’s performance against the better SEC teams, but in Sanford Stadium he came through when it counted for the Razorbacks.
BH: Ryan Mallett; QB, Arkansas – 3 plays, 70 yards, 40 seconds… That big drive is more than enough to give him the nod. But 380 yards and 3 TD passes helps too.
GH: Ryan Mallett; QB, Arkansas – No brainer, as the game-winning drive was textbook. Sets up one of Arkansas’ biggest games as a member of the SEC.
RM: Ryan Mallett; QB, Arkansas – Gets the nod for a “coming-of-age, program-defining” road win, in spite of his poor second half performance (5/13, 66 yards) – right up until that final game winning drive, that is.
BS: Ryan Mallett; QB, Arkansas – Did what he had to to get the win. As Russ mentioned above, his 2H was less-than-inspiring, but if UA is going to be a legit contender, they’re going to have to win SEC road games. For the first time in his career, Mallett did just that.
2. DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
BG: Patrick Peterson; CB, LSU – MSU threw the ball Mr. Peterson’s way four times on Saturday, and he took two of them. The best cornerback in college football.
BH: Eddie Foster; DB, Vanderbilt – Great play on the pick six that really seemed to shake up Masoli.
GH: Eddie Foster; DB, Vanderbilt – Playing without 2 DBs in the secondary, Foster’s pick six was great (and much needed).
RM: Nick Reveiz, LB, Tennessee – 14 tackles (5 solo) in the loss to UF. (Nod to Sean Richardson, Vandy (again led team in tackles, this time w/ 12), and everyone playing defense for LSU – particularly Peterson & Claiborne (2 INTs ea), & Baker again led team in tackles).
BS: Patrick Peterson; CB, LSU – If the Tigers can somehow become a national title contender (which, granted, is a stretch considering the offense), Peterson becomes a legitimate Heisman contender.
3. SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK
BG: Josh Jasper; K, LSU – A school record five field goals, including a 52-yarder.
BH: Josh Jasper; K, LSU – The good news is that Jasper was 5-5 in field goals. The bad news is that he had to kick 5 FGs.
GH: Wes Byrum; K, Auburn – Never underestimate the importance of a veteran kicker. Byrum calmly nailed 39 yard game winner, while Clemson’s freshman is unable to connect in OT. (RM note: You must be related.)
RM: Josh Jasper, K, LSU – This is a bit of a double-edged sword here, Tiger fans.
BS: Josh Jasper; K, LSU – Without Jasper, the Tigers could have been in trouble. How sad is it that the Tigers’ kicker is their most important (and maybe only) offensive weapon?
4. COACH OF THE WEEK
BG: Robbie Caldwell – After a bad 0-2 start, the Turkeyman dusted his team off and had them ready to physically whip Ole Miss in Oxford.
BH: Robbie Caldwell – Road wins in the SEC tough, even with a struggling Ole Miss team… This one is worth enjoying for the Dores new Head Coach.
GH: Robbie Caldwell – I only have a few rules, but one of them is if Vanderbilt wins a road conference game by two TDs or more, their coach is guaranteed to get my vote that week.
RM: Robbie Caldwell – Break up Vandy! Against ole miss, big conference road win for his fledgling staff – even if most of said staff have been in Nashville since 2002. One more SEC win than last season.
BS: Gene Chizik – It wasn’t the prettiest game in the world, but Auburn has now won three games in three different ways. Teams that find ways to win are extremely dangerous.
5. BEST GAME OF THE WEEK: Arkansas v. UGA
BG: Arkansas v. UGA – Bulldogs managed a 4th quarter rally to tie, and then Mallett broke their (collective) heart. This summer UGA fans didn’t appreciate hearing anything about Mark Richt being on the hot seat... Let’s see how much longer they feel that way.
BH: Arkansas v. UGA – Classic SEC game… Home team struggles and fights back. Really, road team tries to choke it away, but the “Hawgs” pull off a clutch drive with a minute left.
GH: Arkansas v. UGA – Great SEC game between two teams that really needed a win. Last minute drive was thrilling and can’t miss TV.
RM: Arkansas v. UGA – Shouldn’t have been; almost an epic collapse. Raises as many questions about the Hogs as it answers; too much of 2009 reared its ugly head in this road win. That the Hog D is ranked #10 in the nation is a testament to the folly of early season rankings. Bama runs all over this on Saturday.
BS: Arkansas v. UGA – Clemson vs. Auburn was more dramatic, but Hogs vs. Dawgs almost matched it in drama, and greatly exceeded it in terms of SEC importance.
6. BIGGEST SURPRISE OF THE WEEK
BG: Auburn’s offense – Struggled early for two straight weeks, this time at home. What’s going to happen against a real defense?
BH: Georgia’s 4th quarter – Two surprises in this one… First, the Georgia comeback to tie it at 24 showed great heart. Second, it was equally shocking to see them give it back.
GH: Auburn’s 1H offense – Could never get going in the first 30, in a very disjointed half; turned it around in the 3rd quarter. AU must learn to play 60 minutes on offense if they want to make a run for the West title.
RM: That there wasn’t one – The surprise of Week 3 was that everything was on par. UGA played as expected, and Arkansas’ D needs work. UT was competitive for 2.5 quarters. Bama dominated a basketball team. LSU beat MSU with its D. Auburn can’t make up its mind what kind of team it’s going to be. SC took the week off (figuratively) and we don’t know if Kentucky’s ever coming back to play in conference. And while everyone had ole miss beating Vandy, that game’s outcome can hardly be called a shock this season. (Nod to UGA’s All-Everything P Drew Butler; worst punt of his career set up Arkansas with decent field position for final drive. That was actually surprising.)
BS: Auburn’s 1H offense – The Gus Bus was stuck in neutral for the first 30 minutes. The defense did enough to keep the Tigers in it until the O got cranking.
7. BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENT OF THE WEEK
BG: Ole Miss – We know you didn’t watch the game, and we can’t blame you. But the Rebs not only lost to Vanderbilt, they were dominated. Yes, dominated. Dores rushed for 227 yards and forced three turnovers.
BH: Mississippi State – State fans expected more of an effort from their offense, but after a tough loss to Auburn and a sloppy showing @ LSU, better checks those wheel nuts.
GH: Mississippi State – Thought this team was ready to compete in every game this year, but it doesn’t look like it. Maybe they were still hungover after the crushing Auburn loss… We’ll found out for sure next week when Georgia travels to Starkville.
RM: ole miss – Kicking off football in Oxford with bad losses to Jax State and Vandy; Cutcliffe was fired for much less. (Nod to Arkansas’ 2H “How do we lose this game?” and LSU’s production (or lack thereof) off 5 INTs – though it’s hard to still be disappointed with LSU’s offense, given where expectations now are).
BS: Ole Miss – Ole Miss fired David Cutcliffe one year after posting the school’s first 10-win season in 32 years. Houston Nutt should be concerned.
SEC Bloggers Week Two Review, September 13, 2010
SEC Bloggers Week One Review, September 6, 2010