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Alabama… junior safety Mark Barron. Look for the Tide’s strong safety to spend a lot of time near the line of scrimmage defending the run in Friday’s Iron Bowl. Last week’s choice: WR Julio Jones – 7 catches for 86 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Arkansas…sophomore running back Knile Davis. Arkansas’ talented running back has exploded in the last few weeks, and makes Bobby Petrino’s offense balanced and truly dangerous. LSU’s defense will have to keep him in check and keep Ryan Mallett in expected passing situations. Last week’s choice: LB Jerry Franklin – 15 tackles, 2 tackles for loss and 1 sack.
Auburn … junior quarterback Cameron Newton. Will he make the Iron Bowl another showcase? Last week’s choice: Newton – the off week certainly didn’t keep him out of the news, did it?.
Florida…quarterbacks John Brantley, Trey Burton and Jordan Reed. The Gators’ three-headed quarterbacking monster will have to flip on their “good” switch this week if Florida has any shot of ending this disappointing season on a good note. Last week’s choice: RB/WR Chris Rainey – 87 yards rushing, 23 yards receiving.
Georgia…senior linebacker Akeem Dent. The No. 2 tackler in the SEC should be very busy this week against Georgia Tech’s option attack. Last week’s choice: off week.
Kentucky…senior quarterback Mike Hartline. He’s turned in a surprisingly strong senior season, and has a chance to cap it with Kentucky’s first win over Tennessee in 25 years. Last week’s choice: off week.
LSU … senior linebacker Kelvin Sheppard. The Tigers’ defensive leader needs to light a fire under his boys after last week’s effort against Ole Miss. And he’ll have to have the back-seven well prepared for Arkansas’ explosive offense. Last week’s choice: RB Stevan Ridley – 89 yards rushing and 3 touchdowns.
Mississippi State…junior quarterback Chris Relf. Played admirably in the Bulldogs’ double-OT loss to Arkansas, but can he keep it up in the Egg Bowl against a motivated Ole Miss team? Last week’s choice: LB Chris White – 7 tackles and a sack.
Ole Miss …running backs Brandon Bolden, Enrique Davis and Jeff Scott . The Reb-bears’ backfield will have tough sledding against State’s strong front seven, but they are a dangerous bunch. Last week’s choice: QB Jeremiah Masoli – completed 15-23 passes for 177 yards with 1 touchdown and 2 interceptions, rushed for 64 yards and 2 touchdowns.
South Carolina…junior quarterback Stephen Garica. Clemson will be looking to salvage some respect, and so will All-American Da’Quan Bowers. Garcia needs to maintain his consistency and the Gamecocks’ momentum heading into the SEC Championship Game. Last week’s choice: RB Brian Maddox – 12 carries for 67 yards.
Tennessee…freshman quarterback Tyler Bray. He didn’t play well last week against Vandy, and the Vols’ quarterback now faces a Kentucky team looking to end a 25-year losing streak. Last week’s choice: Bray – completed 16-27 passes for 232 yards with 2 touchdowns and 2 interceptions.
Vanderbilt...senior quarterback Jared Funk. Made some plays for the ‘Dores last week against UT. Will he get an opportunity in the season finale against Wake Forest? Last week’s choice: CB Casey Hayward – 5 tackles, 1 tackle for loss, 1 interception and 2 pass break-ups.