Title Implications Tonight In The Swamp

Could this be a de facto Southeastern Conference championship game? Very well could be.

No. 4 LSU travels to No. 11 Florida for a game that could showcase the most pure athletic talent of any matchup this season — in the SEC or in the nation.

The intensity of this game became evident early this week, when LSU's Ricky Jean-Francois boasted the Tigers would "try our best to take (Florida quarterback Tim Tebow) out of the game." Sure, the LSU athletic department sent out a clarification, insisting that Jean-Francois meant to say LSU would "make him ineffective."

But c'mon, we all know what he meant, and that's what makes this matchup great.

LSU has won three of the last four of these games. That only loss, though, was in the Swamp in 2006, when the Tigers gave up 17 straight points without being able to run a play.

Also, don't forget, these teams have two of the gutsiest coaches around in Les Miles and Urban Meyer. So even a quick trip to the fridge could result in missing an unbelievable play.



Angry Bulldogs Take On Vols

What a rough time for the bye to hit. Mark Richt's 10th-ranked Georgia Bulldogs have had two painful weeks to stew over their disappointing, borderline embarrassing effort against No. 2 Alabama on Sept. 27.

Their 41-30 loss may have bruised their collective ego. But undoubtedly, they remember that this is the SEC, where one defeat doesn't ruin a season.

Which brings Georgia to today's visit from a reeling Tennessee team, which tries to avoid an 0-3 SEC start for the first time since 2000. The hot seat in Knoxville increases in temperature on a daily basis it seems, as longtime coach Phillip Fulmer deals with a disgruntled fan base.

He'll stick with quarterback Nick Stephens against what is sure to be an angry Georgia defense. Stephens, in his first career start, was 10-of-17 for 152 yards and a touchdown in a 13-9 win over Northern Illinois.



Back To Basics

Earlier this week, Arkansas anticipated changes from No. 20 Auburn. The Razorbacks expected the Tigers to alter their game plan, to scale back their spread offense and resort back to their power-running days of the past.

They surely couldn't have seen Tony Franklin getting canned, though. But that's exactly what Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville did to his first-year offensive coordinator, so count on seeing some familiar offense from the Tigers. As in three yards and a cloud of dust.

Arkansas' offensive performance will be important. Quarterback Casey Dick must not let the Tigers force the Razorbacks into three-and-outs.

But because of the sudden change on Auburn's staff, the most important matchup is this: Auburn running back Ben Tate vs. Arkansas linebackers Wendel Davis, Jerry Franklin and Freddy Burton.



Quick Hitters

Bowl eligibility is already in No. 13 Vanderbilt's sights as the Commodores travel to Mississippi State, looking to move to 6-0 this season. Coach Bobby Johnson still hasn't been able to choose a starter between quarterbacks Chris Nickson and Mackenzi Adams. ... South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier may finally have found his quarterback. The Gamecocks head to Kentucky with Chris Smelley at the helm, fresh from his 327-yard passing performance at Ole Miss last Saturday. ... No. 2 Alabama and Ole Miss have today off.

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