Dooley previews Tennessee vs. South Carolina
South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier always has been adept at exploiting weakness in pass coverage. So excuse him for appearing giddy today against Tennessee.
Back-to-back quarterbacks have had career games against a UT defense that is giving up 43.3 points per game in SEC play. Up next is Connor Shaw, who was awful last week against Florida and struggled so much against LSU the week before that Spurrier cited his "confused" play while wondering if he had suffered a head injury.
Shaw should appear clearheaded against a defense that is more apt to confuse itself than an opposing quarterback.
South Carolina 38, Tennessee 20: Both the Gamecocks and Vols gave up 44 points last Saturday. But what was business as usual for UT was a shocking development for South Carolina.
The Gamecocks won't be shocked this afternoon.
Alabama 37, Mississippi State 10: The No. 1-ranked Tide looked rather ordinary in dispensing of Tennessee by 31 points last week. The unbeaten Bulldogs are more apt to draw the Alabama that made quick work of Missouri, Michigan and Arkansas.
Florida 27, Georgia 20: The undefeated Gators don't look much different from Alabama these days. They play great defense, run the ball and capitalize on opponents' mistakes.
South Carolina made one mistake after another in last week's 44-11 loss to the Gators. Now, it's Georgia's turn.
Arkansas 37, Ole Miss 34: The Razorbacks are going for a third consecutive SEC victory after looking as bad as coach John L. Smith's bank statement in losing to Alabama and Texas A&M by a combined score of a 100 points. But Ole Miss has made the most substantial turnaround.
The Rebels already have doubled their win total from a 2-10 season in 2011 and won an SEC game for the first time since Oct. 2, 2010, under first-year coach Hugh Freeze.
Missouri 27, Kentucky 17: The Wildcats are probably starting to feel picked on.
Missouri had an open date before Kentucky. So did Georgia, last Saturday's opponent.
The Tigers better make the most of it. Their last three SEC games are on the road against better teams than the one they will face today.
Texas A&M 45, Auburn 20: Aggies freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel probably was thinking the SEC wasn't much different from the Big 12 before he bumped into LSU's defense last week. The Tigers contained his scrambling and intercepted three passes.
These Tigers will be a lot more fun for the SEC's total offense leader.
Vanderbilt 37, Massachusetts 13: The best thing about being Vanderbilt is that the modest accomplishments can qualify as resounding successes.
A 3-4 start might not mean much elsewhere (see Tennessee for details), yet it suggests great progress at Vanderbilt, which won six games last season and will win its fourth today. The Commodores have totaled 10 victories in consecutive seasons only twice in the past 30 years.
Top 25: Kansas State 37, Texas Tech 23; Oklahoma 34, Notre Dame 23; Oregon 63, Colorado 7; Oregon State 37, Washington 23; Southern California 41, Arizona 27; Florida State 40, Duke 23; Rutgers 38, Kent State 20; Stanford 38, Washington State 20; Boise State 42, Wyoming 20; Nebraska 37, Michigan 30; Texas 48, Kansas 24; Ohio 34, Miami (Ohio) 27; Louisiana Tech 68, New Mexico State 32.
Record: 131-27 (.829) overall, 70-68 (. 507) against the spread.