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2014 Schedule Breakout – October

crystal-ball2With football season fast approaching — the first leagues games are 18 weeks from tomorrow — it’s time to start the summer schedule talk.  On Monday, we took a look at each football weekend in August and September.  Today, we grade the games on the SEC schedule for the month of October.  Which are can’t miss and which are mere flip-bys… if that?

We break things down below.  And, yes, we’re trying to be discriminating when it comes to picking “can’t miss” games.

 

October 4th Weekend

Can’t Miss:

LSU at Auburn

Ones To Watch:

Alabama at Ole Miss (If the Rebels take another step forward, this could become “can’t miss.”)

Florida at Tennessee

Vanderbilt at Georgia

South Carolina at Kentucky

Texas A&M at Mississippi State

What Else Is On:

None!  (Gotta love those few weekends when all of the SEC’s teams are playing one another.)

 

October 11th Weekend

Can’t Miss:  

LSU at Florida (One of the league’s best games, especially if Florida rebounds this season.)

Georgia at Missouri (This could be an East Division elimination game.)

Ones To Watch:

Alabama at Arkansas

Auburn at Mississippi State

Ole Miss at Texas A&M (Depending on whether Ole Miss rises and/or A&M falls this, too, could become “can’t miss.”)

What Else Is On:

LA-Monroe at Kentucky

UT-Chattanooga at Tennessee

Charleston Southern at Vanderbilt

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2014 Schedule Breakout – August/September

crystal-ball-fortune-teller2Over the next three days we’ll be breaking down the SEC’s schedule month by month.  Fans at Missouri and Tennessee still have an eye towards basketball, but elsewhere the beginning of summer means the beginning of serious football discussion.  And that means figuring out which games are the ones to watch each week.

Today, we start with the last weekend of August and roll right on through the final Saturday in September.

 

August 30th Weekend

Can’t Miss:

Alabama vs West Virginia in Atlanta

Clemson at Georgia

LSU vs Wisconsin in Houston (like a BCS bowl game in August)

Ole Miss vs Boise State in Atlanta (Thursday the 28th)

Texas A&M at South Carolina (Thursday the 28th and a biggie for the SEC Network)

Ones To Watch:  

Arkansas at Auburn

Idaho at Florida (to see the Gators’ new offense)

Southern Miss at Mississippi State (kudos to MSU for playing their in-state rival)

Utah State at Tennessee (Sunday the 31st and the Aggies will be a preseason Top 25 team)

Temple at Vanderbilt (to see Derek Mason’s debut)

What Else Is On:

TN-Martin at Kentucky

South Dakota at Missouri

 

September 6th Weekend

Can’t Miss:

None!

Ones To Watch:  

Ole Miss at Vanderbilt

Missouri at Toledo (the Rockets aren’t bad and an SEC team is visiting their pad)

East Carolina at South Carolina (the Pirates were 10-3 last season)

Arkansas State at Tennessee (another solid team visits a young UT squad)

What Else Is On:

Florida Atlantic at Alabama

Nicholls State at Arkansas

San Jose State at Auburn

Eastern Michigan at Florida

Ohio at Kentucky

Sam Houston State at LSU

UAB at Mississippi State

Lamar at Texas A&M

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SEC Headlines 4/21/2014

headlines-monSEC Football

1. Jacob Coker could certainly help Alabama immediately this year. Here are four others who could help the Tide this fall.

2. Auburn coach Gus Malzahn expects to have a fully healthy football team this fall.

3. Auburn’s offense is going to be scary, writes Barrett Sallee.

4. Arkansas still has two jobs open on the offensive line following spring practice.

5. Robbie Andreu looks at several questions surrounding Florida entering the rest of the offseason.

6. Expectations will be high this season for South Carolina running back Mike Davis, who had a relaxing spring.

7. The NCAA has notified Mississippi State that it’s role in the Luther Davis probe is considered closed, according to CBS Sports.

Coaching Searches

8. Michael White appears to still be the focus of Tennessee’s search but “it’s not a given that he will head to Knoxville.”

9. Dave Matter looks at the history of Missouri’s coaching searches along with offering the latest with the current one.

SEC Basketball

10. Kentucky forward Julius Randle is expected to announce he’s leaving for the NBA this afternoon.

11. Marshall transfer Kareem Canty wants something to compare Auburn to before he decides if he will play for the Tigers.

 

SEC/NFL Draft

12. Johnny Manziel spent time with the Cleveland Browns this weekend. Only 17 days to go until the draft.

13. Evan Silva’s latest mock draft has three of the top four picks coming from the SEC.

14. Georgia’s Garrison Smith believes he can prove he belongs in the NFL.

Extra

15. Bo Jackson’s advice to two-sport star Jameis Winston: “I would follow my heart because I did the same thing.”

16. CBS Sports discovered a document that reveals Northwestern’s anti-union dialogue with the players.

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SEC Headlines 4/20/2014

headlines-sun3-150x150SEC Coaching Searches

1. Tennessee focused on Louisiana Tech’s Michael White? Former Ole Miss player and assistant coach for the Rebels has a $600,000 buyout.

2. White would be right...for Missouri?

3. Does Missouri need to go for the “home-run hire” to energize the fanbase?

Spring games

4. Big step forward for Alabama’s defensive backs but did quarterback Blake Sims’ performance raise a few red flags? Running back T.J. Yeldon the game MVP.

5. Competition at running back still wide open at Auburn. Quarterback Nick Marshall offensive MVP.

6. Auburn draws more than 70,000 fans but the crowd at Alabama was even better despite lowest attendance of Saban era.

7. One thing clear from Missouri’s spring game – this is quarterback Maty Mauk’s team. But there’s also some talent at the bottom of Mizzou QB depth charts.

SEC Football

8. Mississippi State will not face punishment from NCAA over a Yahoo! Sports report linking former Alabama player Luther Davis as a middle man for agents and potential NFL draft picks.

9. Arkansas defensive lineman Horace Arkadie no longer with the team.

10. $46 million east-side expansion at Missouri’s Memorial Stadium expected to be ready for season opener.

11. Auburn’s trip to the BCS title game cost over $3 million - money that will recouped after bowl payouts.

12. With former assistants now elsewhere, Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze had his team change the names of every formation and play call in its offense this spring.

13. Texas A&M wide receiver Ricky Seals-Jones - potential Heisman candidate in 2014?

14. If Georgia receivers Malcolm Mitchell and Justin Scott-Wesley can be healthy by June, offensive coordinator Mike Bobo’s “s blood pressure will go down considerably” according to coach Mark Richt.

15. South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier on quarterback Dylan Thompson: “He does make good, quick decisions.”

16. Mississippi State quarterback Dak Prescott: “I’m a quarterback that can run. And I can get out of bad situations.”

17. Coming out of spring, obvious that Jeff Driskel will be Florida’s quarterback but backup battle will continue this fall.

18. What makes coaching at Vanderbilt such a tough job got even tougher because of heightened expectations.

SEC Basketball

19. Former Marshall guard Kareem Canty reportedly transferring to Auburn. Update: Will visit South Florida before making final decision.

20. Paying tribute to former Arkansas coach Nolan Richardson: “His unique brand of hoops forced the rest of the SEC to adjust, much as Florida coach Steve Spurrier’s “Fun ‘n Gun” passing offense did in SEC football during the ’90s.”

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The SEC’s Most “Taxed” Fans

tax-dayHappy Tax Day, everyone.  From one coast to the other millions of Americans are making out checks to the government and dropping them in the mail today.  We know of no one who’s actually happy about that, of course.

In honor of this day of “giving,” we at MrSEC.com wanted to determine which SEC programs’ fans have been “taxed” the most.  What do we mean by that?  Losing is taxing on a fanbase.  It wears a person down as their favorite school suffers defeat after defeat.  So we’ve endeavored to determine which fans in the SEC have been dealing with defeats and losses most often.

As we normally do we’ll look only at the two revenue sports (which happen to be the two sports we cover around here).  Also, we’ll limit our time frame to two seasons since Missouri and Texas A&M have now completed two football and two men’s basketball seasons as SEC members.

Below you’ll find the number of losses piled up by each program.  There are four categories: Overall Football Losses, Overall Basketball Losses, SEC Football Losses and SEC Basketball Losses.  If you’re wondering why conference losses would be, in effect, counted twice each, it’s because losses to one’s neighbors are typically more painful.

 

Most Losses Since 2012

  School   Football Overall   Football SEC   Basketball Overall   Basketball SEC   Total Losses
  Miss. State   11   9   41   29   90
  Auburn   11   9   39   27   86
  S. Carolina   4   4   38   27   73
  Arkansas   17   14   25   16   72
  Kentucky   20   16   23   12   71
  Vanderbilt   8   7   33   21   69
  Tennessee   14   13   26   14   67
  Texas A&M   6   6   31   21   64
  Ole Miss   11   10   23   15   59
  Georgia   7   4   31   15   57
  LSU   6   5   26   18   55
  Missouri   9   7   23   16   55
  Alabama   3   2   32   17   54
  Florida   10   6   11   4   31

 

In terms of walking away from a stadium or arena in defeat, no SEC fanbase has had to that more than the folks down in Starkville over the last two years.  Bulldog backers have endured 90 losses (double-counting the SEC losses) since 2012.  The onus is on Dan Mullen and Rick Ray — especially Ray — to start recording a few more victories in the seasons ahead.

Surprisingly, Auburn fans wound up in second place on the list.  If not for the remarkable turnaround captained by Gus Malzahn last football season, Tiger fans might’ve ended up atop our “most taxed” list.  AU has lost 50 games overall and another 36 when the in-conference losses are added in again.

On the other end of the spectrum, fans of Ole Miss, Georgia, LSU, Missouri and Alabama have yet to experience the heartache of even 60 losses.  And Florida — with only 31 losses — has the “least taxed” fanbase in the SEC.  Gator fans have only had to deal with 21 losses over the last two years; ten more losses are added to their tally when their SEC losses are counted twice.

As you’ve probably figured out, the numbers are skewed in the direction of basketball.  More games played, more potential losses.  So be it.  This is simply a fun — depending on where your school ranks on the list — exercise to see which fans have a right to be the grumpiest in the Southeastern Conference.  That honor goes to MSU with Auburn, South Carolina, Arkansas and Kentucky falling next in line.  Bulldog fans are the most taxed in the SEC.  But here’s guessing they needed no chart to tell them so.

 

 

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SEC Headlines 4/14/2014

headlines-monSEC Football

1.  Alabama coach Nick Saban appears to be very pleased with the spring performance of running back Derrick Henry.

2. Auburn defender Justin Garrett is back on the field and feeling healthier after dealing with foot injuries.

3. Auburn’s coaching staff expects a lot of the Tigers’ wide receivers this year.

4. Which Georgia players helped themselves this spring? Seth Emerson takes a look.

5. Quarterback Hutson Mason showed he’s ready to lead Georgia, writes Barrett Sallee.

6. Missouri coach Gary Pinkel following the dismissal of Dorial Green-Beckham: “I’ve got to protect the integrity of the program.”

SEC Basketball

7. Bruce Pearl landed his first commitment at Auburn. The prospect was accused of eating marijuana during a January traffic stop.

8. Pat Dooley looks back at the top moments from Florida’s run to the Final Four this season.

9. Jerry Tipton is live tweeting John Calipari’s Monday media tour.

10. ESPN’s Chad Ford on Kentucky guards Aaron and Andrew Harrison will go to the NBA, but “I don’t think either of those kids should leave.”

SEC/NFL Draft

11. An anonymous NFL personnel man called Jadeveon Clowney “spoiled” and “lazy.

12. Clowney goes No. 1 to the Houston Texans in Josh Norris’ latest NFL mock draft.

13. Peter King looks at the draft in this week’s Monday Morning Quarterback.

Extra

14. Dennis Dodd looks at Jameis Winston’s busy weekend, which included a 56-pass spring game and save in a baseball game.

15. Ohio State quaterback Braxton Miller poked fun at rival Michigan over its spring game attendance.

16. Where is outrage about college sports coming from? “Much of it comes from academia and the media, which doesn’t make it wrong.”

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SEC Headlines 4/13/2014

headlines-sun3-150x150SEC Spring Games

1. Expect a very different Florida offense this fall. “The Gators will come at opponents quickly, and also in waves.”

2. Florida coach Will Muschamp on the progress of his offense:  ”I think you can attribute all that to [new coordinator] Kurt Roper and the offensive staff and the job they’ve done.

3. Josh Dobbs impressive at quarterback for Tennessee but coach Butch Jones in no hurry to name a starter. ”No timetable.”

4. But what about the other side of the ball? “It was a tough day for the defense.”

5. Mark Bradley on Georgia quarterback Hutson Mason’s performance: “He missed on some deep throws, but he hit on enough of them to kindle hope…(that he could) lead the Bulldogs to an SEC title as a first-year starter.”

6. Safety Tray Matthews missed the game with hamstring issues. Coach Mark Richt: “We probably need to re-evaluate what we’re doing with him…And he’s probably gotta take some ownership of it too.”

7. Dan Mullen on Mississippi State’s spring game: “We got to see, which is what I wanted, a lot of young players put in situations that maybe they haven’t been in before in this stadium. Lingering question is inconsistent kicking game.

8. Freshman running back Ralph Webb a star of Vanderbilt’s spring game.

9. South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier called a touchdown pass to women’s basketball coach Dawn Staley “the best play” of the scrimmage (around the 1:50 mark).

SEC Football

10. Missouri running back Marcus Murphy on Dorial Green-Beckham’s dismissal.   ”I just hope it helps people to realize the things they can and can’t do and just how to carry themselves.

11. Coach Gary Pinkel: “It’s not a real fun day to be a head football coach.”

12. Arkansas coach Bret Bielema on A.J. Derby’s transition from quarterback to tight end. “I don’t think you could find a happier person on this earth right now than A.J. Derby. He’s loving it.”

13. At Alabama’s second scrimmage, quarterback Blake Sims continued to separate himself from the current competition ahead of Jacob Coker’s arrival.

14. Quarterbacks Drew Barker and Patrick Towles generate buzz at Kentucky’s scrimmage.

15 Auburn coach Gus Malzahn on next Saturday’s spring game“It’s going to be exactly like it was last spring game and we’re going to put the ball down and we’re going to get after it.”

16. Vanderbilt coach Derek Mason’s mural gets a makeover.

17. Paul Finebaum apologizes to Jadeveon Clowney for calling him the ”the biggest joke in college football” last season.

18. Former LSU player Tahj Jones participated in LSU’s Pro Day on Wednesday – he was  reportedly shot by former LSU player Brandon Winey on Friday night. Gunshot to the abdomen and in serious condition.

SEC Basketball

19. Glynn Cyprien  is no longer Billy Kennedy’s associate head coach at Texas A&M. “Sometimes it’s best for both parties to go their different ways.”

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SEC Headlines 4/12/2014

headlines-saturdayDorial Green-Beckham’s Dismissal

1. The first player in Missouri history to catch four touchdown passes in a game is no longer a Tiger. ”This decision was made with the best interests of all involved in mind.”

2. Missouri A.D. Mike Alden on whether Green-Beckham’s girlfriend was contacted by Mizzou coaches.  ”We were assured by our coaches that that, in fact, did not take place.”

3. Beckham’s dismissal comes on same day independent report is released regarding alleged assault of a swimmer by members of the Missouri football team.

 4. “It will be easy for some to think of Green-Beckham as the sacrifice, the one paying for the sins of others. But that’s not fair.”

5. “There are coaches out there right now salivating over the possibility of adding him for a year, until he leaps to the NFL.”

6. Beckham – from Springfield, Missouri – won’t land at Missouri State.  ”That’s not the kind of player we recruit to our program.”

SEC Spring Games

7. Starting quarterback job on the line?  Spring game at Vanderbilt could determine the leader.

8. One of the storylines this spring at Florida - linebacker/defensive end Dante Fowler Jr. has been a beast.

9. Gator running back Kelvin Taylor has separated himself from the pack.

10. With defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt being new, don’t expect Georgia to reveal the entire playbook. “Being the fact that it is Jeremy’s first year as the coordinator, people look at our TV spring game.”

11. Mississippi State’s defense has been physical and impressive this spring.

12. Plenty of questions about South Carolina’s defense and its backup quarterback.  ”For much of spring, the gap between Dylan Thompson and his backup candidates has been the Grand Canyon. ”

13. Tennessee coach Butch Jones:  “We’re not going to be the best team on the field, but that’s OK. We’ve won championships with not having the best collection of talent. ”

14. One week from today, both Auburn and Alabama will have their spring games.  ”There’s only one state in the country where anticipation builds to see not only who shows out…but how many show up.”

SEC Football

15. Backup quarterback battle at Ole Miss could continue through the fall.

16. Former Alabama quarterback Luke Del Rio granted immediate eligibility at Oregon State.

SEC/NFL

17. Could be the first year since 2010 that Auburn produces two first-round picks.

SEC  Basketball

18. Tennessee forward Jarnell Stokes on his decision to enter the NBA draft. “I feel like I can produce on a team in the NBA. I really do. ”

19. Auburn center  Matthew Atewe underwent surgery on his left shin Friday.

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SEC Headlines 4/10/2014

headlines-thuSEC Football

1. Are Columbia police having difficulty getting cooperation from a victim or witness in a case potentially involving Missouri wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham? Update: Investigation complete – no arrests will be made. Update II: Victim and roommate feared retaliation.  Girlfriend text:  ”The coaches talked to me and explained to (me) how serious this is and there’s no time to waste at this point.”

2. Certain people who show up for Mississippi State’s spring game may get dinner with coach Dan Mullen.

3. Is Alabama running back Derrick Henry poised for a breakout season? “During the Oklahoma game, I could tell that they didn’t want to tackle me.”

4. Alabama coach Nick Saban on his quarterbacks: “Cooper Bateman and Blake Sims have both done a nice job this spring and are improving very nicely.”

5. Position battle to watch at Georgia’s spring game?  Left guard.

6. Florida wide receiver Chris Thompson had only two catches last season but has been a standout performer this spring.

7. More debate over Vanderbilt’s decision to move its game against Ole Miss to LP Field.

8. More than 1.2 million fans watched Auburn play football in 2013 - more than any other team in the country.

9. South Carolina defensive tackle J.T. Surratt: “I wasn’t too boisterous last year, but this year I gotta step up into that roll and say more things now.”

10. Arkansas names Southeastern Louisiana associate head coach E.K. Franks as the program’s recruiting director.

11. With its entire starting group gone, plenty of opportunities along Tennessee’s offensive line.

12. Tennessee will have a flag football game for former Vols at halftime of the spring game.

SEC/NFL

13. Zach Mettenberger on his performance at LSU’s Pro Day: ”I’ve been saying for a couple of weeks now that I’m healthy, and good enough to go, and I don’t think all of y’all believed me. ”

SEC Basketball

14. The mother of Kentucky star Julius Randle denies an ESPN report that her son has decided to declare for the NBA draft.

15. Kentucky coach John Calipari on the NCAA: “The situation reminds me a little of the Soviet Union in its last years.”

16. Florida forward Chris Walker says he’s returning for sophomore year.

17. Ole Miss guard Derrick Millinghaus is planning to transfer.

18. Former Texas Tech guard Dusty Hannahs is transferring to Arkansas.

19. Former Missouri player Earnest Ross filed a restraining order against teammate Zach Price a before Price was arrested twice for assault.

20. Auburn coach Bruce Pearl has one more spot to fill on his staff.  Interviewed 12 candidates during the Final Four.

SEC History

21. How much did Bear Bryant make when he coached Texas A&M?  $15,000 plus 1% of the gate.

Extras

22. This is how you become a college football bag man.

23. Big Ten opening an office in New York City.

24. David Letterman’s replacement is Stephen Colbert.

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Report: Harvey-Clemons To Join Ex-UGA D-Coordinator Grantham At Louisville

Strong safety Josh Harvey-Clemons (25) (Photo by Perry McIntyre Jr.)This fall, defensive back Josh Harvey-Clemons won’t be playing for the same team he did a year ago.  But he might be working for the same coach.

The grandfather of the former Georgia Bulldgo told InsideTheVille — the 247sports site covering Louisville athletics — that his grandson plans to transfer to Louisville where he will be reunited with former UGA defensive coordinator Todd Grantham.  Harvey-Clemons is on the market after being dismissed by Georgia.  The former five-star recruit had reportedly violated the school’s strict drug policy on more than one occasion, leading first to suspensions and then to his ouster in mid-February.

“He wants to stick with Coach Grantham and his defensive system,” said Woodrow Clemons.  ”That ‘star’ position that he’s able to play safety and outside linebacker and cover the back coming out or able to rush the quarterback.  We kind of like that.”

Harvey-Clemons will have to sit out this season before returning to the field in 2015 with two years of eligibility remaining.

The defensive back recorded one interception for Georgia last season and he recovered one fumble.  He was third on the Dawg defense with 65 tackles.

But he might best be remembered — by Georgia and Auburn fans alike — for being one of the guys who batted a last-second pass into the air which led to this…

 

Auburn Hail Mary Miracle TD Catch vs Georgia

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