Holy hell, Auburn is not good.
After winning the series Saturday, I really thought the Plainsmen would come battling back with their backs against the wall and an SEC tourney berth possibly hanging in the balance.
More bad news, Scott Bittle was taken out before the first pitch due to pain in his shoulder. He couldn't get loose according to Ole Miss radio announcers, but I'm hoping he just needed some time off after blowing away the competition for the past month.
But the Rebels just kept piling on the runs Sunday, even through the rain and lack of fans in the stands.
With a 16-8 SEC record, tied with Florida and LSU for first place, what's next for these three teams? And who else could threaten the throne?
Next weekend, the Rebels play Mississippi State in Oxford with the Bulldogs bringing up the rear in the SEC this year.
LSU and Florida coincidentally play next weekend in what will be a very important series for shaking out the SEC overall title. Florida travels to Alex Box Stadium, but the Gators proved their mettle by sweeping formerly #1 UGA in Athens this weekend.
Ole Miss holds an advantage over the Gators while were deficient against the Tigers in Baton Rouge losing two of three.
Florida hosts Kentucky in the final weekend of SEC play while LSU travels to Starkville.
Another couple contenders: Arkansas, Georgia, Alabama will shake out these top three seeds. UGA hosts Vandy next weekend and travels to South Carolina for the final weekend. If the Dawgs can go on a run, their 14-10 record could vastly be improved.
Arkansas and Alabama face each other next weekend, which could knock one of these contenders out of the race. With Arkansas and Ole Miss playing in the final weekend, Arkansas may have everything or nothing to play for in Fayette-nam.
How the hell will all of this play out? Can Scott Bittle go in his next two scheduled starts? Will Auburn disband their team? All great questions.
To make things a little clearer, (home teams are listed first):
May 8, 9, 10:
Ole Miss vs. Mississippi State- Rebs could sweep, 19-8 possible SEC record
LSU vs. Florida- Both teams took crucial away series this weekend, either way neither will sweep
UGA vs. Vandy- UGA should take two of three at least putting them at 16-11
Alabama vs. Arkansas- Both teams need two wins to stay alive, Arky has greatly cooled off, 'Bama could have 17 SEC wins by end of it
Rebels would potentially be protecting a one game lead going into the final weekend if the aforementioned occurs.
May 14, 15, 16:
Arkansas vs. Ole Miss- Rebs need to take two out of three to hold on to lead and finish with 21-9 SEC record
Auburn vs. Alabama- 'Bama gets the sweep and they finish with up to 19/20 SEC wins
South Carolina vs. UGA- USC is scrappy at home and ought to fend off the 'Dawgs
Mississippi State vs. LSU- State surely won't be swept to end John Cohen's first season in the Vegas, LSU is looking for a tie with the Rebels
Florida vs. Kentucky- Florida could be looking at a chance to take over the Rebels with a sweep of Kentucky and will play inspired ball
Essentially, the SEC has three teams that could finish in the 21/22 SEC win range. with three more that could muddy up the process by winning 19/20.
We say all this to say: damn, it feels good to be in our position. We control our destiny against an inferior team and a tough away assignment over the next two weeks. I wouldn't have asked for much more at this point. We look solid for a regional at this point if we can gut out two to three more victories. Any more than that and I would consider the Rebels worthy of a national seed.