Almost Perfect Picks Sees Some Upsets

Here we are in Week 3 of the college football season and the Southeastern Conference is by and large still in exhibition game mode. There is one huge SEC game and a couple of league teams are playing tough competition, but Almost Perfect Picks is still pretty much coasting to success in predicting the winners of games featuring SEC teams.

Our straight up selections over the first two weeks are 21-2, and it would have been very, very difficult for anyone to have done much worse than that considering the paucity of competitiveness. Our picks against the point spread and the over/under have been commendable, a 75 per cent success rate at 27-9. We strongly suggest that margin will not continue and urge resistance to any temptation to gamble on college football games.

Alabama Coach Nick Saban has caught himself a couple of times in interviews in talking about difficult games the Crimson Tide will face down the road, hastily adding something along the lines of “including this week.” This week is a game against Southern Mississippi. Bama will recognize its 1974 SEC Championship team, which defeated USM 52-0.

Southern Miss (1-1) at Alabama (2-0) at 5 p.m. on ESPN2 – The big question this week is whether Bama’s quarterback situation will be resolved. Would Nick Saban dare start Jake Coker to see how he does with the score 0-0? Probably not. Blake Sims hasn’t done anything to lose his position. Southern Miss is coming off a win over Alcorn State, but lost its opener 49-0 to Mississippi State. The Golden Eagles have a bad historical record against the Crimson Tide (5-35-2) and a bad record against ranked teams (15-62-1). Alabama 52, Southern Miss 0.

Georgia (1-0) at South Carolina (1-1 overall, 0-1 SEC) at 2:30 p.m. CDT, 3:30 Eastern, on CBS – With a loss to Texas A&M to start the season, South Carolina has its back to the wall. Georgia opened the season impressively with a romp over Clemson, then took a week off to prepare for the Gamecocks in what could be the key game in the SEC East. In a big game, take the self-proclaimed Ball Coach against the other guy. South Carolina 31, Georgia 28.

Massachusetts (0-2) at Vanderbilt (0-2, 0-1) at 11 a.m. CDT on FoxSports – Here’s what we know about Massachusetts. 1.) The teams are known as the Minutemen (we don’t know about the women’s teams), which makes them one of those rare teams whose nickname does not end in “s” and that is the only thing it has in common with the Crimson Tide in football. 2.) Almost everyone writes it as UMass because that’s easier to spell. 3.) Vandy would not be playing them if they were not bad, although the Minutemen played Colorado a pretty good game last week. Vanderbilt 37, Massachusetts 17.

Central Florida, aka UCF (0-1), at Missouri (2-0) at 11 a.m. CDT on SEC Network – UCF played Penn State a nice game in Dublin, and then took a week off to recover from jet lag. Missouri is in a rut, but it’s a good rut, having won its first two games by identical scores, 38-18. UCF is probably a little more of a test for the Tigers. Missouri 37, UCF 18.

Arkansas (1-1, 0-1) at Texas Tech (2-0) at 2:30 CDT on ABC – One thinks of Texas Tech as steamrolling the opposition and of the Razorbacks as still being stuck in an elevator. But the Red Raiders have been struggling, too, a touchdown win over Central Arkansas and a four-point pull-it-out win at UTEP. Picking underdogs is a fool’s errand and we’ve already gone for one, but here’s another. Arkansas 28, Texas Tech 24.

Louisiana-Lafayette (1-1) at Ole Miss (2-0, 1-0) at 3 p.m. CDT on SEC Network – If ever there was a team that could be tempted to looking ahead, being 4-0 and hosting Alabama in its attempt to rise to SEC West title contender, it is Ole Miss. After this week’s game the Rebels get a week off and then face Memphis in Oxford. Here’s a little warning for Mississippi: Don’t look past Memphis to Alabama. The Rebs, however, can sleepwalk over La-La. Ole Miss 45, Louisiana-Lafayette 14.

Mississippi State (2-0) at South Alabama (1-0) at 3 p.m. CDT on ESPNews – What, you ask, is Mississippi State doing playing South Alabama on the road? Have you been to Starkville? Have you been to Mobile? Case rested. This looks like an easy win for the Bulldogs, but former Tider Joey Jones has a knack for having his team prepared. State will win, but it will be a battle. Mississippi State 31, South Alabama 28.

Louisiana-Monroe (2-0) at LSU (2-0) at 6 p.m. CDT on ESPNU – There are SEC teams that have overlooked Louisiana-Monroe and paid the price, and Alabama is one of those teams. LSU knows about its fellow state school and its football players, though, and the Tigers won’t be distracted...not even by Leonard Fournette’s Heisman Trophy campaign. LSU 42, Louisiana-Monroe 14.

Kentucky (2-0) at Florida (1-0) at 6:30 p.m. CDT, 7:30 Eastern, on ESPN, weather permitting – For a team that has played only one game, the Florida Gators have regained the luster of by-gone seasons in the national perspective. That one game was a 65-0 win over Eastern Michigan. Kentucky hasn’t bitten off much in its schedule, either. Although Kentucky has one of its rivals, Vanderbilt, next week, the Wildcats are less likely to be looking ahead than is Florida, which heads to Tuscaloosa on Sept. 20. All of that matters not much considering the gap in athletes. Florida 38, Kentucky 14.

Tennessee (2-0) at Oklahoma (2-0) at 7 p.m. CDT, 8 Eastern, on ABC – Prior to the start of the season, almost everyone expected Tennessee to have a tough time with its first three non-conference games. The first two were Utah State and Arkansas State, and the Vols looked very good in beating both handily. The third one is a different breed of non-conference opponent. Oklahoma has one of the nation’s best teams and its coach seems to have a little SEC fixation and loves to run it up if he can. As against Alabama in the Sugar Bowl last year. The Sooners will discover the Vols are making progress, but Tennessee will find it’s not there yet. Oklahoma 28, Tennessee 24.

Rice (0-1) at Texas A&M (2-0, 1-0) at 8 p.m. CDT on ESPN2 – There could hardly be a bigger contrast than the Marching Owl Band (MOB) of Rice and the grand military band of Texas A&M. Well, there is one greater contrast. The football teams. It’s hard to imagine the Aggies having a series that doesn’t end in a touchdown, and A&M can run a lot of series. Texas A&M 66, Rice 17.

Auburn has an open date and will play at Kansas State Thursday.

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