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Post Opponent watch

Wednesday November 12, 2008

Georgia Southern (5-5):

Central Michigan (7-2): Fans of the Chippewas can skip their cardiologist appointments. Four of CMU’s seven wins have come by three points or less. Still perfect in the MAC, they enter a key stretch in conference play. They will play on consecutive Wednesday nights against Northern Illinois and Ball State. The big question is the availability of QB Dan LeFevour. LeFevour has been banged up for the past month, and a starter still has not been named for the NIU game. Brian Brunner has been stellar in relief, and his line against Indiana was outstanding (35-53, 485 yds, 4 TD passing, 1 TD rushing). THIS WEEK: @ Northern Illinois

South Carolina (7-3): The good news? South Carolina has won 6 out of their last 7 and has deservedly returned to the rankings after a solid win over Arkansas. Beat Clemson and it’s at worst an 8-4 season with a decent bowl ahead. The bad news? Enjoy the trip to Gainesville. THIS WEEK: @ Florida

Arizona State (3-6): If you need to heal what ails you, play Washington. ASU was able to end a six-game slide by pulling away from the Huskies. It’s noteworthy that the pass-happy Sun Devils got it done with 182 rushing yards against Washington. They should also win this weekend’s game with Washington State before making a final push towards bowl eligibility. THIS WEEK: Washington State

Alabama (10-0): Alabama’s in the position we "enjoyed" at the start of the season. Sure, they’re #1, but everyone seems anxious for them to lose and make way for the real contenders. But unlike Georgia, Alabama keeps winning and won’t let go of their top ranking. Will they slip up before the showdown with Florida? Not likely, but that’s why they play the games. MSU did pull the upset last year. THIS WEEK: Mississippi State

Tennessee (3-7): Despite the resignation of Phil Fulmer, the Vols still had a shot at a bowl bid if they won remaining games against Wyoming, Kentucky, and Vanderbilt. In any other year, those would be gimmes, but this is no typical Vol season. Wyoming, who might be looking to replace their own bird-flipping coach, came into Knoxville, collected their paycheck, and left with an ugly 13-7 win. Rocky Top has hit rock bottom. What’s left for the Vols? Two things: one – play spoiler in Vanderbilt’s quest for bowl eligibility. Two – extend the 23-game winning streak over Kentucky. A Vol loss in either game is going to make a bit of history. Oh – and no Tennessee team has ever lost eight games in a season. THIS WEEK: BYE

Vanderbilt (5-4): Is the Tennessee game Vandy’s best last chance for that elusive 6th win? The Commodores are reeling and weren’t in the Florida game for more than 5 minutes. THIS WEEK: @ Kentucky

LSU (6-3): Georgia fans can relate. The defending SEC champion turns things over to a freshman quarterback who starts hemorrhaging killer interceptions. Sound familiar? It’s a down year relatively speaking, but the Tiger defense has kept it from being worse. LSU will be back, and things could be much worse in a rebuilding year. THIS WEEK: Troy

Florida (8-1): Florida’s starts against Kentucky and Vanderbilt made me think how good of a job Georgia did in the first half of the WLOCP. The Gators are doing whatever they want to in the first half these days, and if you give them an opening in something so minute as punt protection, they will exploit it in painful repetition. With the defense playing well, the Gators could most weeks survive an off game from the offense, but that doesn’t seem to be a problem that’s going to present itself. Two years ago it took a few blocked kicks to survive South Carolina’s trip to the Swamp. THIS WEEK: South Carolina

Kentucky (6-4): The Wildcats have to be wondering one thing: did they find something in Randall Cobb, or was that just the Georgia defense? The passing game wasn’t especially explosive, but who needs it when the most basic of running plays will move you up and down the field? Kentucky had a pair of eight win seasons with Andre Woodson. They’re two winnable regular season games away from eight wins and a decent bowl bid without Woodson and with a quarterback situation that would make Auburn and Tennessee hesitant to trade places. Not bad. THIS WEEK: Vanderbilt

Auburn (5-5): Auburn played to its strength and saw Kodi Burns and a trio of tailbacks lead the way to 290 yards on the ground in a 37-20 win over Tennessee-Martin. The story is incomplete without noting that this was a 27-20 game in the 4th quarter and that Auburn rested a few defensive starters. Auburn, though down, still has plenty of motivation in its final two games. Not only are these the traditional rivalry games; Auburn must also win at least one of them to avoid a losing season and avoid missing out on the postseason. THIS WEEK: Georgia

Georgia Tech (7-3): Tech’s ACC title hopes took a big hit with Saturday’s loss at UNC. Though the season has been positive to this point, the Jackets are just 1-3 in their division of the ACC and hold none of the tiebreakers they’d need even if they can beat Miami. Without an FSU fumble, we’d be talking about a team that lost three straight. Tech won’t play another Saturday game until their visit to Athens; a Thursday night home game with Miami wraps up their conference slate next week. THIS WEEK: BYE

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  • Nice write ups. Look for the Central Michigan game to stay close, regardless of who’s at QB. Look for Georgia to run away from Auburn. Go Dawgs.