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Defining Games in the SEC this Week

T-Dawg looks at week four and makes his predictions.

NCAA Football: Kansas State at Mississippi State Matt Bush-USA TODAY Sports

It’s hard to believe, but the season will be one-fourth of the way over after this weekend. Amazing. Life goes so fast. This year’s Hall of Fame inductee, Micheal Haddix, I remember well. He was a class player who seemed to play all out, all the time. I never knew his story coming to State and afterwards. He epitomizes what sports can mean to a kid’s life and how it can set the foundations for a productive life. If you haven’t read it here it is:

Now for Week 4 in the Southeastern Conference:

No. 23 California @ TSUN: Coach Matt Luke has had his Black Bears combing the countryside in search of as much berries and wild game as they can gather and consume before lean times come along. They have had moderate success with the low-risk encounters so far, but times are changing.

The Cal Golden Bears make a trip to the deep south in search of a winter home. Justin Wilcox brings his bear cubs into town with a 3–0 record, including a win over No. 14 Washington. If you look hard enough, you would notice that a Golden Bear is larger and more ferocious than any Black Bear, even though a Golden bear hasn’t been seen in almost 200 years. What is even more troubling here is that the infamous Peter Sirmon is the Cal defensive coordinator. There will be a confirmed sighting of a Golden Bear in Oxford, Mississippi Saturday morning and it will make Luke’s chain-gang just a little bit unnerved.

T-Dawg’s Winner: California 28-20

Southern Miss @ No. 2 Alabama: The Golden Eagles have been flying over the distant skies lately searching for answers. They found a few in Troy last week as they befuddled the Trojans in a back-and-forth scoring slug fest.

Saban’s Red Wave put more water in the bucket during the allotted time than did Muschamp’s Cluckers last time out. The landscape has changed in Tuscaloosa, with the offense being 55th in rushing. The defense has also taken a hit and is ranked 40th overall. Saban is not happy, but when has he been? Tua throws more darts in every direction than any Mustard Buzzard can deflect away. The Golden Eagles will have their belly full of flying and their behinds full of Tua’s darts before catching a westerly breeze to get out of town on.

T-Dawg’s Winner: Alabama 44-20

No. 4 LSU @ Vanderbilt: Orgeron’s (pronounced Or ge ro ….n is silent) Bayou Bengals have been dancing like never before, as their passing game is now second in the NCAA. Baby “O” is taking his Tiger circus to Nashville this week to look up Blanco Brown and learn the “Cowboy Boggie” steps.

The Commodores have seen the repairs they made on their fleet over the summer go for naught. Every ship (offense, defense, ST) is taking on water and the bilge pumps are having trouble keeping pace. It is quickly looking like a long season of storms for the ‘Dores and a full scale hurricane blows up the Cumberland River Saturday morning. The “Anchor” won’t hold this week. You might not want to watch Big Baby boogie but you can bet he will.

T-Dawg’s Winner: LSU 52-13

Tennessee @ No. 9 Florida: Pruitt’s boys finally broke through against some out of place water snakes to get that “good all over feeling” before heading down to the Swamp. The Volunteers know they need to make a miracle shot to really get back on target, if that’s even possible now. Putting a lead ball in some Gator heads would help in that mission.

Mullenex saw his “Frank-furter” go down with a Fitzgerald ankle in Lexington, Kentucky last week and now must decide which little Gator moves forward. The Gators have just been treading water in the Swamp (59th Total “O”, No. 30 passing, No. 91 rushing) and may struggle more now. The Gator “Chomp” will be dependent on defense. Winning with Trask could be a task against the sharpshooters from Knoxville.

T-Dawg’s Winner: Florida 26-24

No. 8 Auburn @ No. 17 Texas A&M: Jimbo Fisher purchased a prize Angus calf and intends to raise it to be “The Bull of the Ring.” He intends to protect it and show it off each chance he has. He plans to do the same with his Aggie team. Jimbo and Reveille understand the grind of the SEC is now upon them and it will take all hands to control an expectant group of Tigers.

Gus has been pure giddy over his freshman quarterback and believes the sky is the limit this year. Meanwhile, they have a vacation planned to College Station where they will be examined for fitness against an army of cadets. The Cadets have been marching in unified line, as they step up and down the field in every drill imaginable. If Gus is to have a welcome home experience at the Waffle House in Auburn late Saturday night, the Plainsmen must make the Cadets trip and fall, otherwise the sky may begin to fall. In a close one….

T-Dawg’s Winner: Texas A&M 27-23

South Carolina @ Missouri: Muschamp’s freshman quarterback fought valiantly against Saban’s herd, but there were just too many elephants to contend with. Now a trip to their copy-cat city in Missouri looks dead ahead. The Yard-Birds can find an abundance of food in both the air and on the ground, but they have a real problem defending what they pick up.

Barry Odom’s Tigers have put together one of the top offenses in the SEC. They are very balanced on the ground and in the air. More importantly, Missouri, yes, Missouri has the leading total defense in the SEC. WOW! The Bryant and Roundtree Tiger attack should have their fill of chicken Saturday afternoon.

T-Dawg’s Winner: Missouri 37-28

San Jose St. @ Arkansas: I finally gave the Hogs up for slaughtered and smoked last week, and of course, they wake up. Chad Morris decided to give the QB job to Nick Starkel and magic just seemed to happen against a bunch of green Rams. This week, before Morris takes his Hogs into the SEC, a load of Spartans invade from San Diego. Starkel will try to get his fellow porkers ripping at the legs of the Spartans.

A Spartan has no clue how to contend with a pen full of irritated Razorbacks. The last song the band plays will be revised from the traditional Star-Spangled Banner, And they will use the line “Oh say can you see the way back to San Jose?”

T-Dawg’s Winner: Arkansas 38-20

No. 7 Notre Dame @ No. 3 Georgia: The Irish catch a train from South Bend, Indiana to Athens, Georgia this weekend hoping to march through the south just as Sherman did. Brian Kelly will try to start making his case to get the Cloverleafs into this year’s College Football Playoff. The Lucky Charm may not be enough to avert disaster for the Irish on a Saturday night in the deep south, though.

Kirby Smart will have the DAWG Pound on high alert and intends to have every sprig of clover mowed to the bare earth. The Dawgs are leading the SEC in total offense with an equally balanced offense and defense. The defense squeezes every yard until the blood drops out and won’t allow Kelly’s boys to possess many of them. Before the train leaves back to South Bend, Kirby will be sure to throw QB Ian Book back in the “returns.”

T-Dawg’s Winner: Georgia 41-17

Kentucky @ Miss. State: The Wildcats and the Dawgs each had a heartbreaking and disappointing loss come their way last Saturday. Each has been fighting injuries and other distractions, but all that will be put away this week. It is now that the season must be put into new perspectives.

Coach Stoops will bring his Mildcats to Stark Vegas with an intent to use the trip as a way to bounce back into the SEC East race. Sawyer Smith (Troy transfer) will lead the Big Blue as they try to repair the wounds from the Gators.

Coach Jo Mo will have the Dawgs loaded and ready to begin the SEC gauntlet. Kylin Hill leads the SEC in rushing and is third in the NCAA in rushing. Hill runs with an attitude that is contagious to all around him. Every Dawg had a week to examine themselves and what more they can do. Yes, there has been the annoying and disappointing “tutor-gate” to contend with. Coaches have had to adjust to compensate weekly for that. This is a mixture of very young and inexperienced players with talent that is taking time to mix properly. I look for the Dawgs to make a determined statement against Big Blue.

T-Dawg’s Winner: Miss. State 30–21

It’s extremely important that everyone stays strong through all this heat (climate wise and season wise). As a Dawg Nation, we need to support our kids, encourage them and understand it is just a game. We want to win them all, sure, but we need to understand that we are trying to grow responsible young men also. Sports teaches life lessons if you pay attention. Have faith, because without it, nothing is possible.

Hail State!