Tag:SEC East
Posted on: February 15, 2010 6:46 pm
Edited on: February 15, 2010 6:47 pm
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SEC Big Dance Assessment

RBISPORTS - Last year the SEC got three teams into the Big Dance.  It was one of the biggest disappointing SEC seasons in my lifetime.  Consequently, as a result of last year’s dismal showing, the question a SEC fan has to ask them self is, “how many teams will the SEC send to the Dance this year?”

The SEC is making a better showing thus far if only based on poll comparison to last season. The only top 25 team at this point last season was LSU but this year the SEC has three.  The Kentucky Wildcats are currently ranked #2 in the nation and joining them in the top 25 are Vanderbilt (17) and Tennessee (20).  Interestingly enough they are all from the SEC East.

Tennessee has been ranked all season long but their stock has fallen like the economy and Vanderbilt has been a team that garners little respect outside of the SEC because of their strange losses to the likes of Western Kentucky, Georgia, and Cincinnati.  Kentucky is the only team that has lived up to the hype and yet most pollsters see them climbing up to the top on the heels of losses by Big East Teams.  It seems if some of the pollsters had their way every team in the Big East would be rated in the top 25.  I know the Big East is good but perhaps the Big East as a whole is the basketball media’s version of the Obama crush.

What makes figuring how many teams the SEC will get in the Big Dance is the absolute failure of the SEC West to have some standout team.  In fact outside the State of Mississippi, the SEC has no one to boast from the SEC West.  Mississippi (17-7) and Mississippi State (18-7) are the two best teams and Mississippi is (6-4) in the conference is tied for the West with Arkansas (13-12) which to make matters worse is barely a .500 team so how are the teams from Mississippi and for that matter the SEC? The only other team with a shot right now is Florida (17-8).  Aside from those mentioned no other team has an RPI in the top 65.

I would suspect that most SEC fans feel they deserve at a minimum six teams from the SEC to be represented in the field of 64.  In all likelihood I suspect they will get six but no more.  The SEC also needs to hope there are no surprises in the conference tournament championship. Of course one has to think that has a good chance of happening. South Carolina is one of those SEC teams that can come out of nowhere.  Right now I see Kentucky, Vanderbilt, Tennessee and assured of a spot.  Mississippi is almost certain to get an invite but they need to win the West.  Mississippi State will need to finish above Arkansas. Florida is the bubble team. The loss to Xavier really did not serve them well.  Gators, you need a strong finish,

Posted on: October 24, 2009 11:10 pm
Edited on: October 24, 2009 11:18 pm
 

Is It Time For Bobby Johnson To Go?

RBISPORTS

Gamecocks Defeat Commodores   14-10

The Vanderbilt Commodores are the biggest disappointment amongst teams competing in the South Eastern Conference East. Tonight they failed to improve on their dismal 2-5 record falling to 2-6 with a very unconvincing 14-10 loss to the University of South Carolina Gamecocks.  A win by the visiting Dores would have gone a long way in quieting discontented Vandy fans even if they had remained firmly entrenched in last place in league standings.

The huge home crowd advantage for South Carolina did little to intimidate Vandy with the game scoreless after the first quarter.  The Dores missed on their first scoring opportunity early in the second quarter when Ryan Fowler missed on a 26 yard field goal.  South Carolina would score first on a controversial catch in the end zone.  Garcia hit D.L. Moore in the end zone on a 35 yard pass play that was ruled a catch. The replay clearly showed he never had possession until he was out of bounds nevertheless S.C. got the score, the ruling on the field stood. The Commodores came right back to tie the game 7-7 on the ensuing kickoff on the strength of a Warren Norman 99 yard return for a touchdown.

The Dores took the lead in the third quarter on the strength of a drive that included 36 yards on the ground Norman. When the drive stalled, Coach Johnson elected to go with Fowler for the field goal. Fowler connected on the 21 yarder this time and Vandy led 10-7.  Despite the impressive performance by Norman and the success Vandy was beginning to show on the ground that would be the last we would see Norman really used from that point forward.  Norman finished with 83 yards on the ground and the kickoff return for 99 yards. Norman had quite an impressive performance against a very stingy Gamecock defense.

The Dores came into the game third in the Nation against the pass.  Garcia however had a field day passing for two touchdowns and 312 yards.  The backbreaker was Alshon Jeffery’s 43 Yd pass reception from Garcia with 12:51 left to play. The five play drive that covered 89 yds in only 2 minutes and 10 seconds to provide the final margin.

Vandy had one more chance with over four minutes left despite having no timeouts.  Spurrier had elected to go for a 4<sup>th</sup> and two rather than kick a sure field goal that would have required Vandy to score a touchdown just to tie. The attempt failed and even lost 6 yards giving Vandy the ball on their 36 yard line.

Vandy moved the ball down the field on the arm of Larry Smith. However once again the drive failed when Smith trying to get out of trouble lost 15 yards and then threw the ball costing an intentional grounding. The total loss was 30 yards and brought up 4<sup>th</sup> down.  Since this game was anticipated as a loss, many Vandy fans might be happy.  But I am not. Vandy went away from the ground game and ultimately paid the price. In a close game where the team plays over their head, I look to how did the coaches perform?  Steve Spurrier made a real bad mistake in going for a 4<sup>th</sup> and two.  Coach Johnson made a bigger mistake taking the ball out of Warren’s hands and staying with Larry Smith.

Vandy also returned to their penalty plagued ways. I blame this loss on coaching and wonder is Coach Johnson trying to get fired?

 

 
 
 
 
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