Dye-Gest: SEC Games Worth Watching

College Football Hall of Fame coach Pat Dye writes about Auburn's game and other matchups in week two of SEC play.

As Auburn heads to Starkville to open the Southeastern Conference portion of the schedule on Saturday vs. Mississippi State, the SEC West matchup should be the first of several interesting conference contests scheduled for week two of the college football season.

I am looking forward to seeing how the two newcomers to the league perform in their SEC debuts with Missouri playing host to Georgia and Texas A&M taking on visiting Florida in College Station.

Georgia is the team I believe should finish first the SEC East, but Missouri has a chance to win this game with the Bulldogs playing without key players who have been suspended.

Buffalo moved the ball effectively against Georgia in the opener and that was surprising. I suspect that having four starters out had a lot to do with it. The good news for Georgia is it looks like the freshman, Todd Gurley, is the real deal at running back. He is going to be special.

I think Texas A&M, which will be playing a true freshman quarterback in his first college game, will be hard-pressed to deal with the Gators, even a Florida team that was not impressive in its opener vs. Bowling Green. I thought the Gators would be better last week than what we saw from Gainesville.

Not being settled on a quarterback probably affected the Gators in their opener. There didn't appear to be any game-breakers on the Florida team at wide receiver and the running backs are just good, not great.

Auburn will run into a highly-motivated opponent on Saturday in Starkville. Keys to success for the Tigers this weekend include matching the home team's intensity and taking care of business defensively when it is time to make a tackle. Way too many of Clemson's yards vs. Auburn came after the ball carrier should have been stopped.

Offensively, a key for Auburn on Saturday, and for the rest of the season, is for a couple more wide receivers to step up on game days.

Emory Blake is a tough guy and will make all of the plays, including the courageous catches in traffic over the middle. The same is true of tight end Philip Lutzenkirchen. However, two good receivers is not enough for the offense to play to its potential. One more receiver performing at the level of Lutzenkirchen and Blake would be good. Two more would be great.

If Auburn takes care of those areas on offense and defense, I like the team's' chances of coming home from Starkville 1-0 in the SEC. If those same problems crop up vs. Mississippi State, it could be a long day for the Tigers.

(If you have a question or a subject you would like me to write about in future columns, you can email it to PatDye@autigers.com.)

Editor's Note: This is part of a series of columns that College Football Hall of Fame member Pat Dye is writing for AUTigers.com about the game he played and coached. An All-American player at Georgia and one of the top head coaches in SEC history at Auburn, he also served as a head coach at East Carolina and Wyoming. Dye participates in the Legends Poll, a Top 25 rating of the best teams in college football as determined by a panel of all-star former head coaches. Dye writes three columns for AUTigers.com--The Dye-Log, the Dye-Gest and Pat's Picks.

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