Clary's Week One SEC Predictions

It's that time of year again. The wait is officially over. Football is here, and that means it's time for SEC pigskin predictions from GamecockAnthem.com analyst Ryan Clary.


I posted a 52-13 record last year, but that means nothing because every season is a new one. Each week I'll give you my predictions for all SEC teams and the reasons why.

Let's get started...


Western Carolina at Alabama: Alabama's young defense will get a good test against a solid rushing attack from Western Carolina. The Tide will go through some growing pains learning Saben's new system. However, his aggressive style, along with the most underrated QB in the SEC, John Parker Wilson, will guide Alabama to an easy second half. WC's defense was terrible last year but was plagued by injuries, so we really don't know what to expect. Very simple here... Roll Tide

Alabama 27 Western Carolina 13


Troy at Arkansas: There is no other rushing attack in America like Darren McFadden and Felix Jones, and Troy will get a first hand look at it. I think that Casey Dick will have a better year than expected, knowing that it's his job and there is no crying mama behind him. Troy's QB Omar Haugabook was the Sun Belt Conference Player of the Year last season, so don't expect Troy to hand a "0" on the board. But this one shouldn't be all that close.

Arkansas 35 Troy 14


Kansas St. at Auburn: Finally, a game worth watching. Kansas State's offense is young but exciting at the same time. Wide receiver Jordy Nelson can stretch the field and will be a good test for the Tigers' secondary. The Wildcats' problem will be stopping DE Quentin Groves. Very simply... they won't. Auburn needs to get Brandon Cox going for them to have a shot at 2nd in the West. Good luck with that.

Auburn 23 Kansas State 17


Oklahoma St. at Georgia: I could talk for hours about Georgia's problems, but most people already know them. Here's the biggest factor - Oklahoma St. WR Adarius Bowman had 1,187 yards last year and 12 TDs, while Georgia is very young at CB. Okla. St. can fly on offense and will look like a machine. If the Cowboys can keep the great rushing attack of Georgia's off the field, they've got a great chance to pull the upset. The Cowboys are young but experienced on defense and this one promises to be close.

Oklahoma St. 21 Georgia 20


Western Kentucky at Florida: There's no better way for a new quarterback to start off than against a very inexperienced defense. Florida will score a lot, even with Tim Tebow running the helm, and it won't be close. We'll know more about what Tebow can do on the 15th, not this Saturday.

Florida 45 Western Kentucky 10


Eastern Kentucky at Kentucky: Both offenses can score and are very fast. Both defenses are terrible and can't stop anyone... well except maybe Clemson. Ouch. The Wildcats have better athletes and more depth, and the 4th quarter will belong to the SEC.

Kentucky 42 Eastern Kentucky 27


LSU at Mississippi State: Remember last year's opener in Starkville? This won't be anything like that. It'll be close for the first quarter, but after that LSU will put on a show, and it'll be fun to watch. LSU shows how great they are this week.

LSU 42 Mississippi St. 6

Ole Miss at Memphis: BJ Green-Ellis is a legitimate All-SEC caliber running back and will need to be big this week for the Rebels to win. Memphis is very experienced and solid on defense, so the question is - can Memphis put it in the endzone? If Ole Miss can keep it close early, they'll wear Memphis down. Look for Memphis to go deep early and force Ole Miss to throw... which equals a loss.

Memphis 24 Ole Miss 17


Richmond at Vanderbilt: I'm not sold on Vandy quarterback Chris Nickson, but he'll look good this week. Richmond's defense couldn't tackle someone if they ran right into them. It's never a good sign when in the media guide, the top thing said about you is that you played in all 12 games last year. They have some all conference players but also a bunch of 12 game guys. Vandy will look better this week than they will all season.

Vandy 20 Richmond 7


Tennessee at California: This game is the most talked about of the week, but won't be the best to watch. Erik Ainge has a fractured finger and even though I have the Vols winning the east, it will take them a couple of weeks to find themselves at wide receiver. You don't lose that many weapons and come out firing. Coker and Foster are two very good backs, and they'll have to carry the load. Cal is not as good as some people are saying, but they are still very deep and solid all the way around. If this game was played in November, the outcome would be different.

California 23 Tennessee 20

La. Lafayette at USC: It doesn't matter who is at quarterback, because one name stays the same - Steve Spurrier. This one will not be a 50 point blowout, but Carolina will look pretty good on offense. LaLa can run the ball very well and will throw a lot of misdirection at USC. However, their inability to throw the ball will allow the Gamecocks to play 8 or 9 in the box. Late changes in the secondary would normally be a cause for concern, but not against LaLa. Carolina will have too much for them up front, and on offense even USC's young guys at wide receiver will look good against this defense. Don't take too much away with what the Gamecocks do on offense, no matter who looks good. La. Lafayette's just terrible on defense.

USC 34 La La 10


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