SEC & Tide game notes

SEC vs. SEC games have traditionally been among the most competitive in the nation. After six weeks of this season, 13 SEC vs. SEC games have an average scoring margin of 12.54 points per contest. 61.5 percent of the SEC's nine games (8-of-13) have been decided by ten-points-or-less.

Young and Old

According to the latest depth charts (9/27 & 10/4), Alabama and Arkansas have the most experienced offensive units while Auburn has the most experienced defensive unit in the SEC. The Crimson Tide and Razorback offenses average 2.81 years. The Auburn defensive unit averages 2.90 years.

Georgia has the least experienced unit on offense, averaging 2.13 years, while Tennessee has the least experienced unit on defense, averaging 2.17 years.

SEC Statistical Trends

Trends moving towards the passing game have picked up during the last decade in the Southeastern Conference. In 1992, passing yards accounted for 50.1 percent of the total offensive yards in the league. This year, passing yards account for 59.7 percent of the yards, down from an all-time high of 63.5 percent in 1999. Also, point production in the SEC is at an all-time high this season.

Scores of Last Week's Games

Ole Miss 20, Florida 17
Mississippi State 30, Vanderbilt 21
Georgia 37, Alabama 23
Auburn 28, Tennessee 21

SEC in the Associated Press Poll (Oct. 6)

1. Oklahoma (59) 5-0
2. Miami, Fla. (1) 5-0
3. Ohio State (5) 5-0
4. Virginia Tech 5-0
5. Florida State 5-0
6. LSU 5-0
7. ARKANSAS 4-0
8. GEORGIA 4-1
9. Southern Cal 4-1
10. Nebraska 5-0
11. Texas 4-1
12. Washington State 5-1
13. TENNESSEE 4-1
14. Iowa 5-1
15. Pittsburgh 3-1
16. Northern Illinois 5-0
17. Minnesota 6-0
18. tie: Purdue 4-1 and Texas Christian 5-0
20. Michigan 4-2
21. Michigan State 5-1
22. Kansas State 4-2
23. Wisconsin 5-1
24. Oregon State 5-1
25. Virginia 4-1

Others (SEC Only): Auburn (65), South Carolina (9), Ole Miss (5).

SEC Football on TV this Week

(Thu.) Oct. 9
6:30 p.m. FOX SN/SUN SEC-TV Weekly (Live)
7:30 p.m. ESPN Kentucky at South Carolina Football (Live)

(Sat.) Oct. 11
12:30 a.m. FOX SN/SUN SEC-TV Weekly (Taped from Oct. 9)
12 p.m. JP Sports SEC Football Today (Live)
12:30 p.m. JP Sports Auburn at Arkansas Football (Live)
3:30 p.m. CBS Sports Florida at LSU Football (Live)
7:45 p.m. ESPN2 Georgia at Tennessee Football (Live)

USM Golden Eagles at Alabama Crimson Tide

2 p.m. (CST) * Bryant-Denny Stadium (83,818) * Tuscaloosa
LIVE TELEVISON: None, PPV only

SOUTHERN MISS (3-2, 3-0 Conference USA)
Head Coach: Jeff Bower (Southern Miss, 1975)
Overall/Yrs: 83-60-1 (.580) / 13th season
USM/Yrs: 83-60-1 (.580) / 13th season

2003 Schedule:
8/30-at California (L, 2-34); 9/4-at UAB (W, 17-12); 9/13-MEMPHIS (W, 23-6); 9/25-NEBRASKA (L, 14-38); 10/4-at Cincinnati; (W, 22-20); 10/11-at Alabama; 10/25-SOUTH FLORIDA; 11/1-LA.-LAFAYETTE; 11/8-at Houston; 11/15- TULANE; 11/20-TCU;11/29-at East Carolina.

Conference: Conference USA
National Rankings: N/A
Formations: Offense - Multiple/One Back * Defense - 4-3

Key Southern Miss Players

RB Tim Blackwell (5-11, 190, Jr., Mt. Olive, Miss.)
Leads USM with 259 yards on 50 carries and 3 TDs in 4 games ... Did not play against Cincinnati ... Has had one rushing TD in last three games ... Rushed for 96 yards on 15 carries against Memphis ... Rushed for 88 yards and caught 3 passes for 33 yards against UAB ... Had 44 yards rushing vs. Nebraska.

QB Damion Carter (6-3, 185, Fr., New Orleans, La.)
Thrusted into starting role ... Played final two series of the Nebraska game and finished the contest completing 14-of-17 passes for 143 yards and a TD ... Was his first collegiate action ... Completed 3-of-6 for 23 yards with a TD and an INT vs. Cincinnati.

LB Rod Davis (6-3, 245, Sr., Gulfport, Miss.)
Has 58 total tackles (39 solos) in first five games ... Has 9 TFLs (-19) along with two forced fumbles and a pass deflection ... Logged season-high 15 stops with 4 for losess against Cincinnati ... Third-team All-America by AP last season, with 168 tackles ... Has 419 career tackles, including 285 solos stops.

USM Team Notes

The Golden Eagles are one of 10 Division I-A programs that came into the 2003 season with nine straight winning seasons. Last season, USM was 7-6.

ALABAMA (2-4, 1-2 SEC)

Head Coach: Mike Shula (Alabama, 1987)
Overall/Yrs: 2-4 (.333) / 1st season
UA/Yrs: 2-4 (.333) / 1st season
National Rankings: N/A
Formations: Offense - Multiple * Defense - Pressing

Key Bama Players

TB Shaud Williams (5-8, 182, Sr., Andrews, Texas)
Named SEC Offensive Player of the Week in two of the first three weeks of the season ... Second in SEC in rushing, averaging 108.7 yards per game ... Has 652 yards rushing and 7 TDs in 2003 ... Third in SEC in all-purpose rushing (141.7) ... Had career-high 174 yards rushing and 3 TDs vs. Kentucky ... Rushed for 135 yards against Arkansas, including 80-yard TD run.

FL Triandos Luke (6-0, 188, Sr., Phenix City, Ala.)
Is 11th in the SEC with 22 receptions in six games for 293 yards and 3 TDs ... Caught season-high six passes for 60 yards and a TD against Arkansas ... Caught four catches each against Oklahoma and South Florida ... Has 80 career catches for 933 yards and 8 TDs.

WLB Demeco Ryans (6-1, 213, So., Bessemer, Ala.)
Leads team with 70 total tackles (38 solos) ... Has two tackles for losses (-4) and three QB pressures ... Set school-record with 25 tackles against Arkansas ... Had 16 total stops and two TFLs vs. Oklahoma ... Had 27 total tackles last season as a true freshman.

SLB Derrick Pope (6-0, 223, Sr., Galveston, Texas)
Second on team with 56 tackles (28 solos) with three sacks (-23) this season ... Had team-high 16 total tackles vs. Oklahoma and 14 against Northern Illinois ... Had 65 total tackles last season with a sack and interception.

Tide Team Notes

Ten of Alabama's 23 offensive scoring drives have been less than two minutes in length, tied for second most in the SEC.

Series/Game Notes

Record: UA, 31-6-2
Last meeting: UA, 20-7 (9/21/2002 at Tuscaloosa)

Teams have met every year since 1992 ... Alabama has won 10 of the last 11 meetings ... The Crimson Tide hold a 14-1-1 advantage in games played in Tuscaloosa and a 13-2-1 edge in Birmingham ... Jeff Bower is 1-11 against Alabama ... All games in the series have been played in the state of Alabama ... Alabama has won the last two meetings ... Southern Miss defeated Alabama, 21-0, in 2000 at Legion Field ... Alabama's Mike Shula was 3-0 against Southern Miss as a player ... The last USM win in Tuscaloosa was in 1982 (38-29) ... The Tide have won six straight meetings at Bryant-Denny Stadium ... In last season's meeting, Alabama held USM to just 145 total offensive yards in a 20-7 victory ... UA's Shaud Williams rushed for 135 yards on 21 carries.


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