What do you make of the SEC East? Out of the flaming wreckage that was the division after Saturday night's results, there appeared to be a few truths emerge. South Carolina is where it's often been after a win against Georgia: In the driver's seat with no guarantees that the Gamecocks will make it to the finish line. Either Florida has some work to do, or Kentucky is better than most people thought, or a little bit of both, after their triple-overtime game. Tennessee appears to have some of the issues that were expected, though it's not like Oklahoma completely mopped the floor with them. And there's Missouri, quietly chugging through a trickier off-conference schedule than you might think. We won't talk about Vanderbilt right now. Can anybody get out of this division without at least two and maybe three conference losses?
More narrowly, what do you make of South Carolina? Here's a team that got blown out of its own building on opening night, then just managed to beat East Carolina before winning an always-emotional game against Georgia on the same day that East Carolina took down Virginia Tech. Did we read too much into the first two games of the season, or is it reading too much into a game where South Carolina had its back to the wall and held on for a tough win? And if the Gamecocks are a legit contender after all, what does it say about the Texas A&M team that thrashed South Carolina in the first game?
How good can Arkansas be this year? If the Razorbacks close out the non-conference slate undefeated -- games against Northern Illinois and UAB are left -- they just need two SEC wins to get to a bowl game. But their interdivision opponents are Georgia and Missouri, which isn't looking like the easiest draw in the world. Arkansas is probably going to have to pull an upset or two if they're going to go bowling -- do you see that happening?
Let's talk about Vanderbilt for a moment. It took the Commodores a 14-point fourth quarter -- which, to be fair, was more points than they had scored in all of the 2014 season leading up to this point -- to beat Massachusetts in Nashville. That included a bizarre moment when Derek Mason, down four, decided to go for a two-point conversion for reasons that are not entirely clear to any logical human being who understands the rules of the game. Does Mason make it out of his first season as Vanderbilt head coach with his job? Should he? And what is the ceiling for this Vanderbilt team now that it finally has its first win?
What are you watching this coming weekend? There's the Thursday night game between Auburn and Kansas State, but the only conference games are Florida-Alabama, Mississippi State-LSU and South Carolina-Vanderbilt. So are you looking to see
how quickly Alabama puts in the fourth string whether things get ugly for Florida in Tuscaloosa, whether Mississippi State can put its stamp on the SEC West race early or whether the Commodores can pull a legitimately shocking upset against a team that always has fits in Nashville? Or will you pass and look elsewhere for your weekend entertainment?