Johnson's Final Thoughts: SEC Breakdown
Posted Nov 30, 2012

Terry Johnson's Final Thoughts before the final weekend of the regular season.

By Terry Johnson
Follow me @TPJCollFootball

- While most of the talk about the SEC Championship Game is about the defenses, it's worth noting that both Georgia (second) and Alabama (third) are among the league leaders in scoring offense.

- Here's the key number for Saturday's game -- 3.5 yards per carry. If the Dawgs can hit that mark against the Crimson Tide, they should be able to stick with a balanced attack. Otherwise, Bama's front seven will simply pin their ears back and come after Aaron Murray.

- Yes, the winner of the SEC Title game will advance to the national championship. However, whether or not they should play for all the marbles is open for debate. Consider the following five resumes according to the Sagarin ratings:

  • Team A - 1-1 vs. the Top 10, 6-1 vs. the Top 30
  • Team B - 2-1 vs. the Top 10, 5-1 vs. the Top 30
  • Team C - 1-0 vs. the Top 10, 4-1 vs. the Top 30
  • Team D - 1-1 vs. the Top 10, 2-1 vs. the Top 30
  • Team E - 0-1 vs. the Top 10, 2-1 vs. the Top 30

In order, those teams are: Stanford, Florida, Kansas State, Georgia, and Alabama.

- I can't wait to see the selection guidelines/criteria for the four-team playoff. It will be interesting to see how they deal with above scenario. After all, what matters most: strength of schedule or winning your conference?

- Why isn't the MAC Championship Game getting more publicity? The winner of this contest has an excellent chance of earning the conference's first ever BCS bid, especially if Kent State should prevail.

- In addition, the game features two of the country's most electrifying players. If you haven't seen Jordan Lynch and Dri Archer in action, you're in for a real treat.

- It won't have any bearing on the national championship, but the Pac 12 Championship Game will be one of the top clashes of the weekend. Sure, the Cardinal won convincingly last weekend, but the Bruins still have a chance if they can avoid committing so many costly penalties.

- On the other hand, Stanford has been virtually unbeatable ever since Kevin Hogan took over at QB.

- Speaking of QB changes, Texas will start Case McCoy against Kansas State this weekend. It will be interesting to see how he handles the pressure of playing against a Wildcat team that leads the nation in turnover margin.

- The toughest game of the weekend to call is the Oklahoma - TCU game. Yes, the Sooners have a great record, but they're coming into this contest on the heels of a hard-fought win against Oklahoma State in the Bedlam Series. Will they have enough left in the tank to beat a surging Horned Frog team that defeated Texas on Thanksgiving night?

- Wisconsin will beat Nebraska to win the Big Ten Championship. The Badger defense has played like gangbusters ever since the Cornhuskers embarrassed them in the last meeting. That doesn't bode well for an NU offense that struggled with lowly Iowa last week.

- Let's see how the NCAA handles Georgia Tech's bowl eligibility. Will it really refuse to grant a bowl waiver to the Yellow Jackets if they lose to an angry FSU team in the ACC Championship Game? Remember, Tech is only playing in the game because Miami and North Carolina are (or will be) in trouble with the NCAA.