Week 2 in the SEC did not disappoint. The two games between SEC teams went right down to the wire, and the league went undefeated in the other games (albeit against a few weaker teams).
Here's what we learned this week in the SEC:
Neither of these teams will play much run defense this year. Nick Farley was going to be missed in the middle, but I'm not sure people thought he would be missed this much. Through two weeks, Auburn has already given up 560 yards on the ground against middle of the pack teams. They stopped MSU when it mattered, but what will happen when they face Arkansas, South Carolina, and Florida all in a row?
And for Mississippi State, they came close, but couldn't get it done when it mattered most. They'll certainly have a chance at home against LSU, but a victory doesn't look too promising. Auburn gashed the Bulldogs for 235 yards on the ground, so you know Michael Ford and Spencer Ware will be licking their chops.
A.J. McCarron has earned Nick Saban's trust. Saban spoke in the week leading up to this game that he would manage the quarterbacks in a way that would give the team the best chance to win, and that ended up meaning sending McCarron out for every meaningful snap under center. While Saban hasn't officially declared the quarterback competition over, it's clear who he trusts in crunch time situations. Barring an epic meltdown this week against North Texas, it appears that McCarron will be Alabama's starting quarterback at the start of SEC play.
Tyler Bray is the best quarterback in the SEC. Through two games the Tennessee quarterback's stat line reads like this: 51/65, 698 yards, 7 touchdowns, 0 interceptions. Even against mediocre defenses, it's hard to ignore the numbers Bray has put up. It sure helps to be throwing to guys like Justin Hunter and Da'Rick Rogers, but UT's passing game will give them a chance to hang with everyone on their schedule. Don't be surprised if the Vols upset the Gators this weekend.
Mark Richt's seat is officially on fire. Can we finally say that now? It seems that Richt has been on the "hot seat" for the good part of the last two or three years, but an 0-2 start in two evenly-matched, but winnable games was pretty much the worst-case scenario for Richt. Now it'll be tough for Georgia to even get to a bowl game, but will 6 or 7 wins be enough to save Richt's job after preaching the "dream team" all offseason? I'd say not.
Vanderbilt has bought in to James Franklin's system. They might not win 7 or 8 games this year, or even make a bowl game, but Franklin's scrappy Vanderbilt team will give teams all they've got. It certainly wasn't talent that propelled the 'Dores to their win over UConn, but a desire to win that the first-year coach has already begun to instill in his team. Oh, and recruits are starting to notice, too.
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