Top TV games in the South: #62 - #59

With the football season right around the corner and television games being announced often, Dawg Post Editor Dean Legge and contributing writer Quinton Grant have compiled the best 65 Southern Football television games of the fall. Take a look at the list they have completed, going from #65 all the way down to the #1 game in the South this year. Which game will it be rated the "can't miss" game of the season? Check in every weekday from now until the end of preseason practice to find out.

Mississippi State @ Arkansas

Week of 11/22/2003

Overall ranking: 62 Ranking for week: 4

Why this game is important: This game is important because of Arkansas. Last season the Hogs came from nowhere to pull out the SEC West title. This season they will try to do the same. When they host State they will know if they will be playing for the SEC title or not. We don't think that they will and that's why this game is not that high on our list.

Why this game is not important: As we said before, we don't think that Arkansas will challenge for the SEC title. We feel confident that State will not challenge considering their situation. The matchup is nothing to write home about.

To watch or not to watch: This too is an ESPN2 or JP type ball game. With Auburn and Alabama most certainly taking up the CBS spot and ESPN probably taking the South Carolina-Clemson game, this game will be early in the day, and therefore watchable with or without meaning.

Mississippi State @ LSU Week of 9/27/2003

Overall ranking: 61 Ranking for week: 3

Why this game is important: LSU is one of two teams, the other one being Auburn, that will be the favorites to win the SEC West. For the Tigers this game is a must win. That makes this game interesting. First, LSU hosts Georgia the week before they play State. That game will be given a ton of hype and the Tigers could be prone to an upset. Secondly, State has not escaped the Western cellar in two seasons, a win against the Tigers would get them out for sure.

Why this game is not important: LSU should drill State.

To watch or not to watch: This game is the third best game of the weekend for the SEC. That means that it is destined to be a JP Sports game. We recommend that you not let this game get in the way of your watching South Carolina-Tennessee and Arkansas-Alabama.

Ole Miss @ Florida

Week of 10/4/2003

Overall ranking: 60 Ranking for week: 3

Why this game is important: Ole Miss beat Florida last season; that is the number one reason to watch this game. Normally in the past we would except a total beating of the Rebels the year following a loss against Florida. But now, with Steve Spurrier gone and Florida looking not too strong its possible that Ole Miss could make it two in a row against the once mighty Gators.

Why this game is not important: This game is important, just not as important as other games. The fact that these two schools are not in the same division hurts the game's overall ranking because of SEC divisional tiebreaks.

To watch or not to watch: Georgia-Alabama and Tennessee-Auburn are huge games. This is the West vs. East weekend in the SEC and the match up are huge. If we had to choose we would not watch this game unless compared to the other SEC games that weekend. However, we will probably choose to fire the ReplayTV up and record the whole weekend.

Clemson @ South Carolina

Week of 11/22/2003

Overall ranking: 59 Ranking for week: 2

Why this game is important: In South Carolina, there is nothing bigger than the Clemson-South Carolina rivalry. The game seems to be year round and the two sets of fans pick at one another all year long. The winner of the game makes certain that the loser knows about it. This game could be both Lou Holtz and Tommy Bowden's last games. Holtz may retire and Bowden could be fired at the end of 2003. While those subplots are important, the game itself is bigger than either coach. Holtz has only won this game once.

Why this game is not important: The first reason why this game is not important is because of the lack of success that both of these teams have had. Both teams have entered this game with winning records only 8 times in the last 20 seasons. That coupled with the fact that this game is not a conference game makes it slightly less important on the Southern Football landscape.

To watch or not to watch: In our opinion this game is a great one to watch. It is the second best game of the weekend, behind only Alabama-Auburn. This game is mandatory if you live in South Carolina.

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