SEC Weekly Notes

All three of the SEC's Top 10 teams are in action this weekend with Ole Miss hosting Florida, Georgia visiting Alabama and Arkansas at Tennessee. The SEC is now 27-8 (.771) against non-conference competition this season, second to the Pac-10 this season.

  • The SEC has six different teams ranked this week, including Alabama, which is ranked in the AP poll for the first time this season ...
  • Four of the SEC's nine games played to date have been decided by 10-points-or-less ...
  • The SEC has eight of the top 53-ranked quarterbacks in the NCAA Pass Efficiency Ratings ...
  • Nine of the 12 SEC teams have outscored its opponents in the fourth quarter ...
  • The three that have not have a combined 6-6 record.

* Georgia Bulldogs at Alabama Crimson Tide *

2:30 p.m. (C) * CBS Sports * Bryant-Denny Stadium (83,818) * Tuscaloosa

ALABAMA (4-1, 1-0 SEC)
Head Coach: Dennis Franchione (Pittsburg (KS) State, '73) Overall/Yrs: 149-71-2 (.676)/ 20th * UA/Yrs: 11-6 (.647)/ 2nd
National Rankings: 22nd - AP
Formations: Offense - Multiple * Defense - Pressing

Individual Statistical Leaders
Rushing: Jr. TB Shaud Williams [41 for 354 yards; 8.6 avg; 2 TDs] (8)
Passing: Sr. QB Tyler Watts [45-71-2; 63.4 pct.; 588 yards; 2 TDs] (4) [36]
Receptions: Jr. WR Triandos Luke [14 for 127 yards; 9.1 avg.; 0 TDs] and Sr. WR Sam Collins [14 for 211 yards; 15.1 avg; 2 TDs]
Scoring: So. PK Michael Ziifle [5-9 FGs; 12-12 PATs; 27 points] (9)
Tackles: Jr. R Brooks Daniels [37 TT (24-13); 5 TFL (-5); 1 Sack (-3)]

  • Alabama has won eight of its last nine games, dating back to last season ...
  • The Tide's win over Arkansas is Alabama's 11th straight SEC opening win, dating back to a 35-0 loss to Florida in 1991 ...
  • Redshirt freshman QB Brodie Croyle made his first career start at quarterback, completing 12-of-24 passes for 285 yards and two TDs ...
  • Senior QB Tyler Watts did not play against Arkansas due to a foot injury ...
  • Shaud Williams (119) and Santonio Beard (134) each had more than 100 yards rushing against Arkansas ...
  • Alabama has scored on its opening possession in all five games this year.

GEORGIA (4-0, 1-0 SEC)
Head Coach: Mark Richt (Miami, '82) Overall/Yrs: 12-4 (.750) / 2nd * UG/Yrs: 12-4 (.750) / 2nd
National Rankings: 6th - ESPN/USA Today; 7th - AP
Formations: Offense - Pro Style * Defense - Multiple 4-3

Individual Statistical Leaders
Rushing: Jr. RB Musa Smith [70 for 357 yards; 5.1 avg; 2 TDs] (4) [43]
Passing: So. QB David Greene [68-117-3; 789 yards; 58.1 pct; 7 TD] (7)
Receptions: So. WR Fred Gibson [19 for 289 yards; 15.2 avg; 0 TDs] (3)
Scoring: Jr. PK Billy Bennett [4-4 FGs; 16-16 PATs; 28 points] (7)
Tackles: Sr. LB Boss Bailey [40 TT (21-19); 3 TFL (-21); 1 sack (-16)]

  • Damien Gary returned a punt 71 yards for a TD and also caught a 20-yard scoring pass from David Greene ...
  • Gary is second in the SEC and ninth in the nation in punt return average with 17.7 yards per return ...
  • Freshman WRs Mario Raley and Bryan McClendon played for the first time this season ...
  • McClendon, son of former Georgia great Willie McClendon, caught a pass for 21 yards on his first series in the game ...
  • Junior DB Kentrell Curry returned an interception 78 yards for a score against New Mexico State ...
  • It is the second straight game that Curry has had an interception.

Tide/Bulldog Series History
Record: UA leads 35-22-4 * Last: UA, 31-0 (9/30/1995 in Athens)

  • Alabama defeated Georgia 29-28 the last time the game was played in Tuscaloosa ...
  • Alabama holds a 7-1 advantage in games played in Tuscaloosa ...
  • Georgia has not defeated the Crimson Tide in Tuscaloosa since 1913 (20-0) ...
  • The Crimson Tide's 31-0 victory in 1995 is the last time the Bulldogs have been shutout ...
  • With a victory, Georgia will be 5-0 for the first time since 1982. It was also the last time that they won the SEC Championship ...
  • Georgia is ranked sixth in the country for the first time since September 19, 1988 ...
  • This is the first time that head coaches Dennis Franchione and Mark Richt will face these schools.

October 5 SEC Schedule

GEORGIA (4-0) at ALABAMA (4-1)
2:30 p.m. (C) Tuscaloosa, Ala. * CBS Sports * Bryant-Denny Stadium (83,818)
Series: UA leads, 35-22-4 * Last: UA, 31-0 (9/30/95 at Athens)

FLORIDA (4-1) at OLE MISS (3-1)
11 a.m. (C) Oxford, Miss. * CBS Sports * Vaught-Hemingway Stadium (60,580)
Series: Tied, 9-9-1 * Last: UF, 28-10 (9/30/95 at Gainesville)

MISSISSIPPI STATE (1-3) at SOUTH CAROLINA (3-2)
1 p.m. (E) Columbia, S.C. * Williams-Brice Stadium (80,250)
Series: MSU leads, 6-4 * Last: USC, 16-14 (9/20/2001 at Starkville)

LOUISIANA-LAFAYETTE (1-3) at LSU (3-1) 7 p.m. (C)
Baton Rouge, La. * Tiger Stadium (91,600)
Series: First Meeting

ARKANSAS (2-1) at TENNESSEE (3-1)
7:45 p.m. (E) Knoxville, Tenn. * ESPN * Neyland Stadium (104,079)
Series: UT leads, 11-2 * Last: UT, 13-3 (9/8/2001 at Fayetteville)

OPEN: Auburn (4-1), Kentucky (4-1), Vanderbilt (1-4)

Last Week's SEC Results

Alabama 30, Arkansas 12
Beard (134) and Williams (119) each rush for more than 100 yards

LSU 31, Mississippi State 13
LSU's Davis has 286 all-purpose yards and 2 TDs

Georgia 41, New Mexico State 10
UGA's Damien Gary returns punt and catches pass for TD

Florida 41, Kentucky 34
Grossman throws for 375 yards and 2 TDs

South Carolina 20, Vanderbilt 14
Gamecock defense holds Vandy to 19 fourth-quarter yards

Tennessee 35, Rutgers 14
Vols outgain Rutgers, 315-51, in second half

Auburn 37, Syracuse 34 (3OT)
Williams rushes for 202 yards with 2 TDs in overtime

SEC in this week's Associated Press poll

  1. Miami, Fla. (71) 4-0
  2. Texas (2) 4-0
  3. Oklahoma (1) 4-0
  4. Virginia Tech 5-0
  5. Ohio State 5-0
  6. FLORIDA 4-1
  7. GEORGIA 4-0
  8. Oregon 4-0
  9. Notre Dame 4-0
  10. TENNESSEE 3-1
  11. Florida State 4-1
  12. Washington 3-1
  13. Kansas State 4-0
  14. Michigan 4-1
  15. Iowa State 5-1
  16. N.C. State 6-0
  17. Washington State 4-1
  18. Southern California 3-1
  19. Wisconsin 5-0
  20. Penn State 3-1
  21. LSU 3-1
  22. ALABAMA 4-1
  23. Texas A&M 3-1
  24. Iowa 4-1
  25. Colorado State 4-1
Others receiving votes (SEC Only): Auburn, Kentucky.

SEC, the Most Competitive Conference in the Nation

SEC vs. SEC games are the most competitive in the nation. After five weeks, nine SEC vs. SEC games have an average scoring margin of 14.67 points per contest. 44.44 percent of the SEC's nine games (4-of-9) have been decided by ten-points-or-less. Only two SEC games have been decided by more than 21 points.

SEC Team-by-Team Notes

ARKANSAS RAZORBACKS (2-1, 0-1 SEC)
The attendance of 73,551 is the largest home crowd ever for Arkansas, and is the largest to ever see a sporting event in the state of Arkansas, topping the crowd of 71,203 at the Arkansas Derby (horse race) at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark., in 1986 ... Matt Jones' first half touchdown was his first rushing score of the season. He scored on five runs in 2001 ... Jones had three plays of 20 yards or more in the first half - a 32-yard run, a 20-yard pass to Cedric Cobbs and a 42-yard pass to George Wilson ... Arkansas is now 6-5 in SEC openers and head coach Houston Nutt is 2-3 in league openers.

AUBURN TIGERS (4-1, 2-0 SEC)
Under Tommy Tuberville, Auburn is 23-1 when scoring 20 or more points in a game ... The Tigers only defeat was a 31-28 loss to Michigan in the 2001 Capital One Florida Citrus Bowl ... Quarterbacks Jason Campbell and Daniel Cobb completed passes to 12 different Tiger receivers ... The three overtime game vs. Syracuse is the second longest game in Auburn history, falling short of the four overtime 56-49 loss to Georgia in Jordan-Hare Stadium in 1996 ... Carnell Williams' 202-yard rushing effort (on 40 carries) was a career-high and was his third consecutive 100-yard rushing game of the season and fifth of his career.

FLORIDA GATORS (4-1, 2-0 SEC)
Florida has now won 14 straight SEC home openers, dating back to a 1989 loss to Ole Miss ... The Gators are 81-2 vs. unranked teams at game time since 1990, including 53-0 in "The Swamp" ... Florida has now thrown for a TD in 149 of the 155 games since 1990, including 74 of 77 games at home ... QB Rex Grossman completed 28-of-43 passes against Kentucky for 375 yards and 2 TDs ... His favorite target was WR Taylor Jacobs, who had a career-high 12 catches for 183 yards and 2 TDs ... Grossman is now 3rd at Florida in career TD passes with 63 and sixth in career passing yards (7,191).

KENTUCKY WILDCATS (4-1, 0-1 SEC)
Derek Abney became just the seventh player in NCAA history to have a kickoff return and a punt return for a touchdown in the same game (see note on page 10) ... WR Aaron Boone's 39-yard touchdown reception against Florida marked his fourth consecutive game with a score ... QB Jared Lorenzen became the second Wildcat to go over 7,000 yards in total offense, as his 175 total yards put him at 7,172 for his career. His two TD passes give him 52 for his career, breaking a tie for second on the all-time UK list with Babe Parilli and putting him 22 behind career leader Tim Couch (74).

LSU TIGERS (3-1, 1-0 SEC)
For the first time since 1970, LSU has held four consecutive opponents to fewer than 250 total yards ... That year, the Tigers stymied Texas A&M (230), Rice (182), Baylor (220) and Pacific (126) ... LSU ran for more than 200 yards for the third straight game. The Tigers are 3-0 in that span and 6-0 under Nick Saban when rushing for more than 200 yards. It is the first time since 1997 (Ole Miss, Kentucky, Alabama) that LSU has rushed for 200 or more yards in three straight games ... Domanick Davis' 286 all-purpose yards were the most of his career and the fourth best in school history.

OLE MISS REBELS (3-1, 1-0 SEC)
Eli Manning became the first QB in Ole Miss history to throw for more than 300 yards in consecutive games ... He threw for 386 yards against Vanderbilt after throwing for 374 vs. Texas Tech ... The Rebels' win over Vanderbilt was their first SEC opening victory since 1992 (def. Auburn, 45-21) ... Ole Miss is off to a 3-1 start for the seventh straight season ... TE Doug Zeigler suffered a broken leg against Vanderbilt and could be lost for the season ... The Rebels are 17-14 (.548 winning percentage) against the SEC Eastern Division since the conference started divisional play in 1992, including 0-2 versus Florida.

MISSISSIPPI STATE BULLDOGS (1-3, 0-2 SEC)
The Bulldogs are 59-16-1 (.783) under Jackie Sherrill when outrushing their opponent, and now 12-43-1 (.223) when not ... PK Brent Smith's 52-yard field goal in the fourth quarter against LSU tied for the fifth-longest in MSU history and was the longest FG by a Bulldog since Brian Hazelwood also connected on a 52-yarder versus Vanderbilt in 1998 ... TB Dontae Walker's rushing touchdown against LSU moved him into sole possession of fifth place MSU's career rushing TD list with 22, surpassing Don Smith (21; 1983-86) ... Nick Turner continued to show his versatility with 87 all-purpose yards.

SOUTH CAROLINA GAMECOCKS (3-2, 1-1 SEC)
A TD catch by Troy Williamson was the true freshman's second in as many weeks ... Dondrial Pinkins' second-quarter TD pass to Troy Williamson was the third of his career and the first of the 2002 season ... Ryan Brewer's third-down reception of 20 yards is his 29th-straight game with a reception ... The South Carolina record for consecutive games with at least one reception is 34 held by Jermale Kelly and Sterling Sharpe ... The third-and-16 conversion from Corey Jenkins to Michael Ages (29 yards) was the first time this season that the Gamecocks have converted a third down of 11 yards or more.

TENNESSEE VOLUNTEERS (3-1, 0-1 SEC)
The Vols scored 28 unanswered points in the second half against Rutgers to win 35-14 ... UT trailed 14-7 at halftime ... UT outgained Rutgers 315-51 total offense in the second half ... QB Casey Clausen completed 15-of-28 for 284 yards with 3 touchdown and 0 interceptions ... He has a 15-3 mark as the Vols' QB when throwing for at least 200 yards ... WR Kelley Washington leads Vols in receiving with 7 catches for 197 yards 1 touchdown ... His 197 yards is the second-most of his career ... He set UT's single-game record with 256 last season vs. LSU ... His 58, 52 and 48-yard receptions are the Vols' longest plays of the season .

VANDERBILT COMMODORES (1-4, 0-3 SEC)
Jonathan Shaub picked off a South Carolina pass in the second quarter - the first for the Commodores this season and the second career pick for Shaub ... Sr. WR Dan Stricker now has a reception in 27 consecutive games ... He finished the South Carolina game with five catches for 43 yards and one touchdown ... He has moved into 15th place (from 19th) on the All-Time SEC Career Reception List with 156 ... Stricker is now alone in second place on the All-Time Vanderbilt Touchdown Reception List with 19. He came into the game with 18 TD receptions - tied with Allama Matthews (1981-82).


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