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Bob Dixon

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Middlesboro, KY 40965

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Go Big Blue!

SHANE SHACKLEFORD: SEC Has Proved To Be The Monster

Well, fellow football enthusiasts, college football opened last week in full throttle. From beatdowns to nail biters, the Alliance Killer (see, I told you they would be) known as the SEC won on all fronts.

With the College Football Playoff expanding to 12 schools by 2026 (or sooner), the SEC proved to be the monster in the room, guaranteeing that multiple SEC schools could feasibly be in the playoffs. If you don’t believe that, you are fooling yourself.


The SEC is the monster. Straight up.


So on that note, let’s look at the week in the SEC.


VANDERBILT 63, HAWAII 10

VANDERBILT 42, ELON 31

The Commodores are 2-0. That is not a typo. They are 2-0. Congrats to the ‘Dores.


TENNESSEE 59, BALL STATE 10: The Vols blitzed the Cardinals from all directions. The sledding gets tougher this week.


MISSOURI 52, LOUISIANA TECH 24: Mizzou blasted the Bulldogs at Columbia, where the Tigers are usually a tough out. This week at Kansas State will tell us more about the Tigers.


ALABAMA 55, UTAH STATE 0: I’m so glad the Tide are playing out of their slump from last year…said nobody.


GEORGIA 49, OREGON 3: I’ll say it again, do not compare the SEC to the Pac-12. There is a difference.


TEXAS A&M 31, SAM HOUSTON STATE 0: The Aggies win a ho-hummer. Next week with Appalachian State will be a much stiffer challenge.


FLORIDA 29, UTAH 26: The Gators win on a late interception in the endzone with the Utes driving. A lot of people have the Gators ranked highly. I’m not there yet. This week with Kentucky will be a better gauge.


ARKANSAS 31, CINCINNATI 24: The Hogs were impressive against the Bearcats. I like the way Cincinnati plays. They’re very solid.


KENTUCKY 37, MIAMI (OH) 13: Will Levis was very impressive. The receivers as a whole have taken a major step forward. The offensive line was ok. The Cats will get it fixed.


OLE MISS 28, TROY 10: The Rebs are pretty good, but the impressive story was former UK coach Jon Sumrall’s debut at Troy. They’re physical at the point of attack and are pretty solid. They will be just fine.


AUBURN 42, MERCER 16: War Eagle beat the fighting Pharmacists just on sheer atleticisim that the SEC has. Next week will be a better look at who they are.


MISSISSIPPI STATE 49, MEMPHIS 23: You think MSU coach Mike Leach remembers last year when the Dawgs got upset (and screwed over) by Memphis. He scored with about 20 seconds to play up comfortably.


SOUTH CAROLINA 35, GEORGIA STATE 14: The Gamecocks were pretty vanilla in beating the Panthers. If they have hopes to make a predicted jump in the SEC, they have to play with more purpose.


FLORIDA STATE 24, LSU 23: The LSU special teams were definitely not special against FSU, and it cost them the game clearly. Are there questions in Baton Rouge already?


PREDICTIONS


Last week, the backwoods Swami was a sparkling 23-4. Hopefully, the Swami can continue the hot streak. Predicted winner in bold print.


SEC


ALABAMA AT TEXAS: Hello Steve Sarkisian, Nick Saban is at the door. Wants to introduce himself.


SOUTH CAROLINA AT ARKANSAS: Hello Shane Beamer, welcome to an SEC favorite. It’s reality, line one.


WAKE FOREST AT VANDERBILT: Well, it was fun while it lasted.


MISSOURI AT KANSAS STATE: Although not as talented as some SEC schools, K-State is a ball-control power offense, not the best option for the Tigers on the road.


APPALACHIAN STATE AT TEXAS A&M: This will be a barn burner A&M in a squeaker.


TENNESSEE AT PITTSBURGH: If the Vols are truly “back”, they have to win a game like this on the road.


SAMFORD AT GEORGIA: The UGA war machine rolls on.


KENTUCKY AT FLORIDA: Give me the Cats in a squeaker too.


CENTRAL ARKANSAS AT OLE MISS: The Rebs run wild in the Grove.


SAN JOSE STATE AT AUBURN: War Eagle improves to a tenuous 2-0.


SOUTHERN AT LSU: The Tigers get their first win in the Brian Kelly era.


MISSISSIPPI STATE AT ARIZONA: The Bulldogs go west and win one on the road in the Pac-12. Stop me if you heard that before the Pac-12 lost to the SEC.


KENT STATE AT OKLAHOMA; The Sooners improve to 2-0. Don’t sleep on OU, they’re pretty good.


SUN BELT


ARKANSAS STATE AT OHIO STATE


SOUTHERN MISS AT MIAMI


NORTH CAROLINA AT GEORGIA STATE


SOUTH ALABAMA AT CENTRAL MICHIGAN


MARSHALL AT NOTRE DAME


NORFOLK STATE AT JAMES MADISON


OLD DOMINION AT EAST CAROLINA


GARDNER WEBB AT COASTAL CAROLINA


EASTERN MICHIGAN AT LOUISIANA


ALABAMA A&M AT TROY


FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL AT TEXAS STATE


GEORGIA SOUTHERN AT NEBRASKA


NICHOLLS AT UL-MONROE


Shane Shackleford is a regional sports columnist from Speedwell, Tenn. He is a member of the Football Writers Association of America and the United States Basketball Writers of America. He has written and published his first book “Bounce: A Basketball Love Story” which can be found on Amazon currently and has another book project in the works. You can find Shane on KySportsStyle.com Magazine, A Sea of Blue, Go Big Blue Country, The Mountain Advocate, Harlan County Sports, Middlesboro News, Claiborne Progress, and The Mountain Eagle. Contact Shane by email at coachshack50@gmail.com and on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.

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