|Seriously, this is what runs the SEC East?|
Anyway, this week's SEC schedule is rather light, so this should take too long and life will roll on as it always does.
Razorback futility vs. What's left of the Magnolia State's dream
Somehow someway Arkansas not only defeated Les Miles and LSU last week, but did so in a 17-0 shutout. However, considering that win is head coach Bret Bielema's only in conference win since making the trip south from Madison, Wisconsin, the school has essentially paid Bielema approximately $6 million in the last two years for one SEC victory. That's an unreasonable amount for any coach to take on one conference win, so it would only makes sense that Bielema plans on having the Hogs win their two remaining conference games on the schedule, against Ole Miss today and Missouri next week, right? I mean, doing so would round off the price of each SEC victory to about $2 million per, which seems equitable for both sides.
Meanwhile, Ole Miss' Hugh Freeze is getting paid about a million less to make hope grow where it never has before.
Therefore, what we have here is a highly intriguing game. The win over LSU has surely given the Razorbacks confidence, and Ole Miss, having lost two straight conference games after such a wonderful start, must win in order to sustain its 2014 campaign for legitimacy. A third loss in a row would render the magical start to Mississippi's season nothing more than mud pies and figment. In other words, this is a fight against normalcy.
Old orange and the new sheriff in town
Missouri is two wins away from winning its second SEC East title in as many years, after having only been in the conference for three seasons. This is a big deal, considering the traditional powers of Georgia, Tennessee, Florida, and Steve Spurrier all reside here. While the three of the schools represented on this list are all in some degree of transition, UGA has no one to blame but themselves for this. Meanwhile, the Tigers with a win could legitimately proclaim themselves as a regional power of sorts. I don't think anyone foresaw this happening three years ago, and it probably deserves to be talked about at length, if it happens.
On the other hand, Tennessee is two wins away from finishing .500 in the conference since 2009. This is a big deal for a once proud program. The Vols can probably expect to beat Vandy, so this game against Mizzou is it. And, by "it" what I mean is they are in a race against Florida to awake as a sleeping giant in a division that has slumped and that Mark Richt and Georgia have failed to seize control of. A win against Missouri tonight would strike a blow for the old powers that be against a seemingly upstart program and lay a foundation for the future that looks a lot like the past. If "Rocky Top" is to mean something again, the first notes of that new meaning need to be sounded tonight.
LSU and A&M too
The winner will be .500; the loser will not be. Things have gone array for both these teams. More could be said, but I'm being summoned away from the house and therefore the keyboard too. Enjoy your Saturdays.
Bryan Harvey can be followed on Twitter