Here is our look at the SEC East:
Florida: The Gators are the only SEC East team left that have an unblemished conference record. While the Gators passing statistics are poor, UF has not been forced to throw the ball very much and Driskel has been a victim of some drops. Brent Pease is finding creatice ways to run the ball and went with what worked against Vanderbilt, calling the read option that resulted in 2 Driskel TDs. The Gator D played it;s worst game of the year but Florida’s special teams stepped it up with a well executed fake punt, blocked field goal, and two point conversion. The Gators and Gamecocks clash Saturday in Gainesviile, in what very well could decide the East.
South Carolina: Last weekend in Death Valley, South Carolina played a game that they really wanted to win. LSU played a game that they HAD to win. While losing a conference game is never a positive thing, the thing Carolina fans need to focus on is that all of the goals are still in front of them. The SEC East is still in play. An SEC championship is still in play. Carolina may need some help with the BCS CG birth, but Spurrier’s focus has been on winning a conference title at South Carolina. A win in Gainesville goes a long way to creating that reality.
Georgia: Georgia was off this past weekend trying to get the Carolina debacle out of their system before taking on Kentucky. A Florida win over Carolina coupled with a Georgia win over the Gators in the WLOCP buts UGA squarely back in the East race. It will be interesting to see how the Bulldogs respond.
Vanderbilt: Despite the loss to the Gators last weekend in Nashville, Vandy sits at 2-4 with a dreadful Auburn team coming in. If James Franklin is going to elevate Vanderbilt, this is a game he has to win. With Auburn, Kentucky, UMass, Ole Miss, Tennessee, and Wake Forest left to play, Vandy could climb back into the bowl picture.
Tennessee: Tennessee after starting 2-0 and rolling into the Florida game with tons of hype, has failed to finish in 3 separate SEC games. Tennessee can play with conference contenders but can not seem to close the deal. Alabama is in town this week with a road trip to South Carolina following that. Derek Dooley desperately needs a signature win or his time in Knoxville could be over.
Missouri: Missouri lost to Vanderbilt. Gary Pinkel’s guys may be a little more humble at media days next year.
Kentucky: Kentucky is terrible. The Wildcats are being forced to play a lot of young guys next year which should be a benefit to whoever takes over this job.
1. Florida: Gators are 5-0 in conference with two huge showdowns left.
2. South Carolina: Gamecocks have to put last weekend behind them to realize goal of getting to Atlanta.
3. Georgia: Need some help and a win in Jacksonville to make this a successful season.
4. Tennessee. Vols can’t close.
5. Vanderbilt. Back to back bowl games would be huge for this program.
6. Missouri. Not built yet to compete in this conference.
7. Kentucky. not much to say here.