By: Barrett Sallee
Week number two of the college football season has several teams kicking off the conference schedule, teams trying to rebound, and teams trying to deal with injuries. Here are three things to keep an eye on this weekend in the SEC:
How Will The Loss Of Sturdivant Effect The Dawgs?
For the second year in a row, Georgia will be without its starting left tackle. Trinton Sturdivant, who missed all of last season after tearing three ligaments in left knee, tore the ACL in the same knee last Saturday against Oklahoma State, and will miss the remainder of the season. Vince Vance will take the place of Sturdivant on the Bulldogs offensive line. Vance started three games at left tackle last season, before suffering a knee injury himself.
Bulldog Nation is reeling a bit, after their less-than-stellar offensive performance against the Cowboys last weekend in Stillwater. Joe Cox, making only his second career start at QB, couldn't get the Dawgs going, finishing the game 15-for-30 for 162 yards, one touchdown and one interception. The loss of Sturdivant certainly won't help matters, as Georgia opens SEC play at home, against the South Carolina Gamecocks this weekend.
The Gamecocks will undoubtedly look to repeat the performance that wreaked havoc on N.C. State last Thursday. Led by Eric Norwood and Cliff Matthews, the Gamecocks were in Russell Wilson's face all night, notching six sacks and forcing a fumble on the Wolfpack's first play from scrimmage, leading to the Gamecocks' only touchdown.
In no way is a game played on the second weekend of the season ever a must-win. But, if the Bulldogs fall to the Gamecocks, they could be in a world of hurt in 2009. The Gamecocks routinely give Georgia all they can handle even in the Bulldogs' best years. With an inconsistent offense and the injury bug already biting the Dawgs a bit, South Carolina is in a prime position to spring the upset this weekend.
I said earlier this summer that South Carolina would go to Athens and upset Georgia. Well, after watching the ineptitude of the South Carolina offense Thursday night, I am going to back off from that a bit. But, with Arkansas on the horizon next weekend, the Bulldogs will start the season 1-2, losing to either South Carolina or Arkansas.
Gators Lose DeBose For The Season
One of the more intriguing questions of the summer was, "who's going to take over the 'Percy Position' at Florida?" One of the primary competitors to take over the position was true freshman WR Andre DeBose.
The speedster from Sanford, Fla., has been nursing a hamstring injury suffered during high school track season all summer. On Tuesday, it was announced that DeBose would undergo season-ending surgery to repair a torn hamstring tendon.
Make no mistake about it, even though DeBose is a true freshman, he was expected to be a major contributor to the Gators in 2009. Several experts, including Chuck Oliver, "The King of College Football," who was kind enough to contribute to our roundtable this summer, expected a breakout season from DeBose.
Gators head coach is expected to fill the "Percy Position" by committee in DeBose's absence. Chris Rainey, Brandon James, Jeff Demps and T.J. Lawrence are all expected to see time at the position this weekend vs. Troy.
DeBose was rated as the number three WR in the 2009 recruiting class by Scout.com. During his senior year, he scored 12 touchdowns and rushed for 1,332 yards on just 117 carries for Seminole (Fla.) High School - an average of 11.4 yards per carry.
Rebels Dealing With Flu Outbreak
One of the major stories this fall not only in the sports realm, but throughout the entire world, is the outbreak of the flu, and, in particular, Swine Flu. Several teams have had to deal with the pandemic already this season. This week, the Ole Miss Rebels are getting hit hard with some form of the flu virus.
As many as 28 Rebels missed practice on Wednesday with flu-like symptoms. Eight of those missing practice are starters, including: QB Jevan Snead, WR Shay Hodge and WR/Wildcat QB Dexter McCluster, who was hospitalized overnight Tuesday night.
The Rebels, ranked sixth in the AP Poll and eighth in the USA Today Coaches Poll, are off this week before hosting Southeastern Louisiana on September 19.
Barrett Sallee covers the SEC for www.CollegeFootballNews.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter at http://twitter.com/BSallee_CFN
Three & Out Archive:
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes - September 10, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes - September 7, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes - September 3, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Media Days, Day 3 – July 24, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Media Days, Day 2 – July 23, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Media Days, Day 1 – July 22, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes – April 16, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes – April 12, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes – April 9, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes – April 3, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes – March 30, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes – March 26, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes – March 18, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes – March 15, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes – March 11, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes – March 7, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes – March 3, 2009
Three & Out: SEC Thoughts, News & Notes – February 28, 2009
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