SEC Week Eleven Preview
No. 1 Alabama (8-0, 5-0 SEC) welcomes No. 13 LSU (7-2, 3-2 SEC) to Tuscaloosa for the matchup between ranked foes. The Crimson Tide once again feature one of the nation’s top defenses, ranking tops in the nation in points allowed at 9.8 points per contest despite losing four starters from last year’s team to the NFL draft. They can score points as well, averaging 41.3 points per contest, spearheaded by running back T.J. Yeldon’s 729 yards and 10 touchdowns. LSU and Alabama have alternated wins in the past five meetings with Alabama winning 21-17 last season in Baton Rouge.
No. 8 Missouri (8-1, 4-1 SEC) seeks to maintain its position atop the SEC East, traveling to Kentucky (2-6, 0-4 SEC). The Tigers rebounded from a loss against South Carolina to blow past Tennessee, 31-3. QB Maty Mauk passed for 163 yards and three touchdowns, and ran for 114 yards, to lead the Tigers to a crucial home win. Kentucky has yet to win an SEC game, but played its most competitive game in its last conference game at Mississippi State, a 28-22 defeat. Missouri rolled past Kentucky, 33-10, in its first meeting as conference foes last season.
No. 9 Auburn (8-1, 4-1 SEC) plays its second-straight road game, traveling to Knoxville to face Tennessee (4-5, 1-4 SEC). The Tigers won their fifth-straight game in week 10, defeating Arkansas on the road, 35-17. RB Tre Mason rushed for 168 yards and a season-high four touchdowns as Auburn won its eighth game of the season. Auburn controls its destiny to winning the West with a home game against Alabama still on the horizon. Tennessee plays its fifth-straight opponent ranked in the top 15, going 1-3 in the first four contests, highlighted by a win over then-No. 11 South Carolina.
No. 15 Texas A&M (7-2, 3-2 SEC) welcomes divisional foe Mississippi State (4-4, 1-3 SEC) to College Station. The Aggies have put up more than 50 points in back-to-back wins over Vanderbilt and UTEP, increasing their scoring offense to 49.0 points per game, which ranks fourth nationally. WR Mike Evans leads the SEC in receiving yards (1,147) and receiving touchdowns (12). Mississippi State’s four losses have come against teams currently ranked in the top 15 of the BCS. Texas A&M defeated the Bulldogs, 38-13, in the team’s first meeting as conference opponents in 2012.
Florida (4-4, 3-3 SEC) returns home for the first time since October 5 to face Vanderbilt (4-4, 1-4 SEC). The Gators have dropped three-straight games since their home win against Arkansas, falling on the road at LSU and Missouri, and dropping their rivalry game to Georgia in Jacksonville. Florida outscored Georgia 17-0 in the second-half but the comeback bid fell three points shy as they lost 23-20. Vanderbilt has alternated wins and losses over the last month, defeating Georgia and UAB. The Gators have won 22-straight over the Commodores, and the last Vanderbilt win in Gainesville came in 1945.
Ole Miss (5-3, 2-3 SEC) seeks to even its SEC record, hosting Arkansas (3-6, 0-5 SEC). The Rebels have won back-to-back home games, and are playing the third of five-straight home games. Ole Miss and Arkansas have split the last six meetings. Mississippi is led offensively by junior QB Bo Wallace, who has passed for 1,976 yards, including tossing for over 300 yards in three-straight SEC games. The Razorbacks have dropped six-straight since starting 3-0, but all five SEC losses have come against ranked opponents.
Georgia (5-3, 4-2 SEC) takes a break from SEC play to host FCS foe Appalachian State (2-7, 2-4 Southern). The Bulldogs survived a hardly fought contest last week against Florida, 23-20.