[Premium article] Well folks we head down the stretch run with more parity than anyone expected. The SEC East is a log jam and the SEC West looks to be a two-team race. Can the West get any crazier? SEC favorites MSU and LSU are 6th and 5th place respectively and out of title contention. LSU and MSU both still have slim bowl chances but MSU's chances are fading fast, while LSU will have to improve quickly and hope for some help from uncle Roy.

Only five games this week, but all are important for bowl positioning. The most interesting match-up may be the Hogs @ Oxford. Who can figure out the Hogs? They are starting to play with some of the potential that many expected back in August. Tennessee @ Notre Dame should be a good one as well as LSU @ Alabama.

Arkansas @ Ole Miss

This just in...the Rebs are pretty good. As much as it hurts to say that, the Rebs are playing well. The are above average and have played well against some very average teams, but to give them credit they should be undefeated. The thing that impressed me the most about the Rebs last week vs. LSU was that after each play they went back to the huddle. That sounds pretty basic, but LSU spent the whole night on defense out of position in the secondary, because after each play they either celebrated too much or spent the whole time finding someone to blame. With a watered down West this year the Rebs could end up 8-3 or maybe 9-2. Arkansas should give the Rebs some trouble. LSU had a good game plan on offense until they got behind and started throwing. Even when they came back to take the lead they never went back to their game plan. The Hogs can run the football. If they can convert on 3rd down and stay out of obvious passing downs they will make it interesting. UM has trouble with teams that can run the ball and control the clock. The Arkansas defense has been tough especially the last two weeks. This one will either be real close or real bad. There will be no in between. Look for UM late.

Ole Miss 23 Arkansas 14

LSU @ Alabama

Great news Tiger fans, Bama is a running school. The sad thing is that nearly every school has had their season high in passing against LSU. BAMA always gives LSU fits, but the Tigers usually play well at BAMA. The honeymoon is over for Nick Saban and the vipers are out in full force in Tiger town. Tiger fans are slow to come to the realization that this had to be their year or it may be another year or two down the road before they will be back. They have talent back next year, but the offense will have a new QB. BAMA is about as good as most expected, they've won the games they should have and lost the ones they should have as well. They should lose this game if preseason expectations count for anything anymore, but LSU is still down after last week. LSU has lost 3 of 4 and their season for all intents and purposes is over in the eyes of most fans. How far will the Tigers fall? Alabama better win this year. Alabama will try to get Milons the ball as much as possible. Another slugfest, but can the Tide cover Josh Reed?

LSU 21 BAMA 17

Vandy @ Florida

Vandy looked well against ACC doormat Duke last week. Florida will look to get the offense back on track this week after sputtering a bit in the last two weeks. Vandy has some pop, but nothing to compare with the likes of Florida. This is as big a mismatch as the SEC offers, but Vandy always gets up for Florida.

Florida 35 Vandy 10

Tennessee @ Notre Dame

Travis Stephens continues to impress. He has patiently waited his turn and has made the most of it. This week Stephens gets to perform on the national stage. This is a great non-conference game for both schools. Notre Dame has only lost one game in October under Bob Davie and that was last week. With the let down of a big loss can the Irish regroup for a home game with a team as talented as UT? Kelley Washington will be the man all day if Clausen gets time. Look for the balance of the UT offense to be too much for the young Irish.

UT 28 Notre Dame 24

Kentucky @ MSU

Okay, okay, okay maybe I'm being a little hard on the Dogs, it won't happen again. We're still family and we all hurt together, that was just my way of sharing that hurt last week. Maybe I should have kept it out of the article, but I can't change it now. I still believe everything I wrote was true and have read nothing from anyone else to refute it. By the way, you still don't have the right to boo, save your e-mails because you won't change my mind.

MSU and UK have had some great match-ups in the past several years. It is a game I expect us to win every year, but I know it will be entertaining. Who could forget Plump's late heroics in 1992 or Eric Brown's sack of Tim Couch in 1997. My favorite game is the 1999 game. Ashley Cooper made one of the biggest hits on a QB ever in that game. I can tell you Dusty Bonner still sees that in his dreams. This year the game finds two team's struggling. UK needs to find an identity and MSU is dealing with the loss of dashed expectations. Last season MSU put it together in the UK game with strong defense. I look for a new look from the Dogs mentally in this game. They've had a week off and hopefully they've regrouped. The pressure is all but gone now. Hopefully they can come out relaxed and play at the level we've all gotten a little spoiled on. Look for Zo to have a big game and I think we'll start to see Justin Jenkins start to come of age. This sounds crazy to most, but I think MSU will really get the offense going. With the benefit of an extra week to prepare and a weak UK defense this one is ours.

MSU 28 UK 17

Until next week,

Steve Robertson
Matthew 16:26

Steve Robertson is a free-lance correspondent who writes The Robertson Report for the premium site portion of Gene's Page. Steve's email address is

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