Saturday, October 27, 2007

Better late than never

OOPS! Wednesday I said I would look at two teams today, and two teams tomorrow, meaning Thursday -- and yet, I didn't post on Thursday, or Friday for that matter. Oh, well, life happens.

So now, we shall proceed to look at the two SEC games I didn't look at Wednesday, and without further ado ...

Mississippi State at Kentucky

This game is important for Kentucky. They are still in the SEC East race, but there is no way they can get to Catlanta without help. But more important even than that is the perception shared by many in the SEC that Kentucky cannot sustain their level of play, and is due to return to form and drop games they should win.

Kentucky Sports Radio takes a look at the UK-MSU game, and raises the specter of Happy Gilmore:

After a hard-fought, human-growth-hormone induced loss, it will be nice for the Cats to get back to their winning ways by going all Bob Barker on the Bulldogs (Does he mean Bob Barker as in when Bob Barker fought Happy Gilmore, or is that an allusion to neutering your dog? Both, kids.) The thought here is that Kentucky wins in such convincing fashion that College Gameday will actually be on the Vanderbilt campus in a couple of weeks to again witness the majesty that is UK Football.
Heh. Well, whatever, but if the Gameday boys show up in Nashville, be looking for the 5th Horseman to ride into town as well.

Greg Ellis from Inside Mississippi State was flying to Lexington for the game, but wound up in Louisville:
I was supposed to land in Lexington. Funny thing, though. I didn’t. Instead, I landed in Louisville. Thanks, Northwest, for overbooking. Wouldn’t have been so bad had my hotel not been in Lexington, along with the rental car. Oh well, that’s baseball. But, I finally made it. That’s all that counts. Just three hours late.
Man, what a drag. Enjoy the game, Greg.

Ole Miss at Auburn

The Tigers are coming off a disappointing loss at LSU in a game they arguably should have won. Ole Miss comes off a brutal beating at the hands of the Arkansas Razorbacks. Ryan at The Auburner hasn't quite moved on from LSU:
The general reaction on the plains has been mostly depression mixed with anger… if that’s even possible. The emotional cycle that has been going on this week goes like so:

1) Remembrance: The worst part of the cycle. Just when you think you have forgotten about the weekend and had moved on with your life only to relive the moment that Les Miles escaped death… again. This phase is often brought about by something that slightly resembles the… ‘Incident.’ For instance, I was driving up Donahue and noticed a sign for “Gourmet Tiger”… WRITTEN IN PURPLE! After that blow to my mood, I had trouble driving faster than 5 miles per hour.

2) Anger: Comes about 45 seconds after the first phase. It’s hard to beat ourselves up for losing on a roll of the dice. This stage consists mostly of questioning the referee’s sexual orientation and Les Miles’ alliance with Satan.

3) Arrest: Vandalism, assault, tax fraud, you name it. You can’t be held responsible for your actions as a result of phase 2. Les Miles took unnecessary gambles and it worked out great for him, why not me?

4) Bail: This is where you find out who your true friends are.

5) Trying to forget: It’s hard, but at some point you gotta move on… or just try to think of something else. Hakuna Matata anyone?

6) Remembrance: Rinse and repeat.
The Plainsmen are playing some of the best football in the league right now, and have redeemed their earlier loss to the MSU Bulldogs. But they have to beat Ole Miss to retain even an outside shot at the West, and even then, they will need help from LSU.

WorldClassGlass thinks the Rebels will have difficulty defeating the Plainsmen in Jordan-Hare, and isn't looking forward to the game:
We all know the Rebels story and it has been a bad season for them. They have been competitive in their two biggest games at home, but are coming off a week in which they played their worst football in the Coach O era.

While I think the Rebels will not play as bad as they did last week, I think they will have a lot of trouble hanging with the Tigers. This is a very big game for the future of the season for the Tigers. With an early evening kickoff(UMAA does not know what that is), the atmosphere at Jordan Hare should be rocking and the fans should be pumped up.

All that being said, I think the Tigers will beat the Rebels by about two or three touchdowns. It will be interesting to see if Seth Adams will return to play similar to earlier this season or if he will continue his interception filled play as the past several games.

I always enjoy the trip to Auburn and look forward to another trip, however I am not looking forward to the game.
As a Kentucky fan, I know exactly what this feels like. Up until the last couple of years, any fine Kentucky blogger could have written sentiments exactly like this one. Rebuilding is difficult, even near-impossible in the SEC when you are are mired in the lower tier. Every year brings more of the same frustration.

Ole Miss, at one time, was a dominant power in the SEC. Will we ever see a return of those halcyon days?