Want to know how the SEC will turn out week-by-week before it happens? Don't we all. So we hooked up the closest thing college football fans have to a time machine and will simulate each week of the season using EA's NCAA Football '13. Please keep in mind that it's all in good fun and we're not saying this is how it actually will happen. Though that would be pretty cool and a little bit eery.
The likelihood of our little simulation being anything like the outcome of the season seems to grow more remote with each passing week. But, man, would this be a fun season to actually have happen. The upsets are starting to pile up this week and throw the whole season off-course.
MISSOURI 30, ALABAMA 28
A late field goal allows the Tigers to pull off the shocking upset of the Tide, who now have two losses and are probably out of the national championship race for all intents and purposes. Missouri runs for 158 yards on 35 carries, and Not James Franklin (MO) goes 17-of-30 passing for 196 yards and three touchdowns. It's a bad week for the SEC West.
SOUTH CAROLINA 38, LSU 14
It wouldn't be a total stunner if South Carolina defeated LSU, especially not if LSU had already dropped a game to Washington. But I don't think anybody sees the Gamecocks clocking the Tigers by scoring 31 unanswered points in the first half and then coasting to the win. Not Connor Shaw throws for 363 yards and four touchdowns in the blowout, which also features five LSU turnovers.
OLE MISS 28, AUBURN 17
Bananas! Ole Miss gets two passing touchdowns in the first quarter to take control of this one. The Tigers manage just 291 yards of total offense on 41 offensive snaps, while the Rebels pile up 474 and go 10-of-19 on third-down conversions to get the win. It could be worse for Auburn -- they score 17 points despite failing to take a snap in the red zone.
MISSISSIPPI STATE 45, TENNESSEE 7
This is actually a reasonably competitive game until the fourth quarter, when the Western Division Bulldogs put up 21 points to blow the lid off. The Vols get eight first downs and gain just 183 yards, 115 of those through the passing game. Turning the ball over three times and converting just one of 13 third-down opportunities probably has something to do with that.
FLORIDA 34, VANDERBILT 10
One of the only games this week that goes somewhat according to plan. Florida leads 28-0 at the half and we're en route to another Vandy blowout. The Commodores generate 222 yards, compared to 415 for Florida. But when you're talking about a game between two teams with three conference losses by the end of the game, we're probably talking about the SEC Network game.
ARKANSAS 30, KENTUCKY 27
Unless, of course, that honor goes to this matchup between two teams that have three conference losses even before kickoff. It actually takes a 20-point fourth-quarter rally for Arkansas to pull this one off. (What exactly is JohnL Smith doing in this game?) Not Tyler Wilson goes 23-of-28 for 318 yards and two touchdowns to overcome two fumbles and 330 yards of total offense the Hogs allow Kentucky to produce.
2 Notre Dame
5 Georgia Tech
13 South Carolina
ORV: Mississippi State (would be 30th); Ole Miss (31)