Rivalry week usually means the Iron Bowl is the most compelling game which is exactly what happened. In fact, it is game of the year IMHO, with more cliff hangers than an Indiana Jones movie. I could write a book on this game, but will make it concise. The game was tied 10-10 with 5:45 left in the 1st half, and the halftime score was Bama 31-27. This time period included a pick six, a KO return TD, a fumble, a long TD drive with incredible catches, a long TD catch and run, and a disputed down call at 1 second left which resulted in a Nick Saban meltdown (best part of the day). The defining play occurred in the 3rd Q when Bama had a 1st and goal on the Auburn 1 leading 31-30 (after endless PI calls). QB Mac Jones, who played a good game, attempted a swing pass in the flat to Najee Harris, but the ball bounced off his back into the Auburn LB hands who then returned it 100 yds for a pick six (same sideline as the kick six of 2103). Bama rallied to lead but Auburn responded for a 48-45 lead. Then the Bama nemesis struck again, Bama has had more missed FGs under Saban than anyone, as the attempted tying kick hit the left upright. The final play was the insult to injury. Auburn had a 4th and 4 on its own 28 with a minute to go, having to punt. Gus Malzahn placed his punter as a WR in formation leaving his offense on the field. Bama was confused, sent 12 men on the field, got penalized giving Auburn the 1st down they needed to expire the clock. Saban was whining about that in the post game.
I about predicted Michigan may upset Ohio St given their recent play, but history prevented me from doing so. The Buckeyes again hung 50 on Harbaugh behind JK "all day" Dobbins and Justin Fields. The easiest fundraising ask in C-bus is to give to Jim Harbaugh's salary fund. Wisconsin did the playoff committee a big favor by smoking Minnesota. Could you have imagined the uproar if Georgia and Minnesota would have won their conference title games meaning that either OSU or LSU would have been excluded.
LSU had a score to settle with Texas A&M after that 7 OT loss of last season. Told that their defense is their weakness, they were on a mission as they wiped out A&M 51-7. Coach O left in the starters to emphasize playing a 60 minute game. Both OSU and LSU know the importance of the #1 seed.
That is because Clemson causally beat the Gamecocks again 38-3. Trevor Lawrence is getting it together, and while Joe Burrow is the deserving Heisman winner, Lawrence is the QB NFL GMs covet. The grade on Clemson is incomplete, and while that may sound a bit crazy, they have not played a top caliber opponent. Past history says they are as good as anyone, and they are on a huge winning streak.
Georgia beat Georgia Tech 52-7, the most points hung on the Jackets in the series history. This game could be costly as star RB D'Andre Swift hurt his shoulder and WR Pickens will miss the 1st half of next week's game in Atlanta for fighting. I say Georgia loses which opens the door for either Utah or the OU/Baylor winner.
Finally, Florida started slowly but ended the year nicely at 10-2. Their only two losses were close ones to LSU and Georgia. This despite playing with a bad run blocking OL and a career backup QB (who in fairness was more effective than the starter). If LSU beats Georgia, you can make a case for the Gators as the 2nd best SEC team in a year where the SEC has five of the ten best teams. Reasonable Gator fans have to be happy with this regular season.
Thanks for another great write up and another (regular) season of them. And who did the Gators beat in Gainesville yesterday?