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Scanning the SEC: Week 6 defined by injuries and routes

Week 7 is gonna be HUGE

NCAA Football: Texas A&M at Alabama Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

The SEC is responsible for 40% of the AP Top 10 poll with Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee and Ole Miss all undefeated, but not without close calls. The Vols narrowly escaped an average Pitt team while Georgia and Bama barely escaped Missouri and Texas A&M respectively. Ole Miss had a tight match against Kentucky and an underwhelming first half in Nashville last week.

Mississippi State was the only other ranked SEC team to win as LSU and Kentucky both suffered defeat. State and Kentucky both remain in the Top 25 heading into Week 7. Time to scan the SEC after Week 6.

Indicative Injuries

The Alabama Crimson Tide were 24 point favorites against Jimbo Fisher’s Texas A&M Aggies on Saturday, but Bama managed to score 24 points and narrowly escape the jaws of defeat. Nick Saban better pray hard that Bryce Young is available on Rocky Top because his offense is suspect without him.

Will Levis is possibly the #1 overall pick in the upcoming NFL Draft and when you are Kentucky, it will be obvious he is missing when he is. Levis was in a walking boot as the Wildcats took on Spencer Rattler and South Carolina. Kentucky suffered their second SEC loss in as many weeks and the season could spiral quickly without their prolific passer.

Arkansas desperately missed quarterback KJ Jefferson against Mississippi State. The Bulldogs were 9 point favorites even with the absence of the opponent’s star QB. The Razorbacks are simply one dimensional without him and could get nothing going through the air.

That’s three big time QBs in the SEC missing action which played a major role in the shaping of the standings this week.

Just a Joke

Whew, imagine being an Auburn, LSU or Texas A&M fan right about now. The dumpster fire on the Plains continues as Bryan Harsin loses by 32 to Georgia. Brian Kelly and Jimbo Fisher refuse to run anything but archaic offenses. That final play by Jimbo was just a horrendous attempt at an upset. LSU getting blitzed at home rarely happens and it may not even be the last time in 2022. These are the kind of jokes that are only funny to those observing and not those involved.

Superb Showings

The Tennessee Volunteers are legit with Hendon Hooker slinging the ball around. They are currently touchdown underdogs at home against Alabama but I would not be shocked if they won that game. They were done a favor not having to play in Death Valley at night, but based on that showing, not sure it would have mattered.

Vanderbilt lost, but had a superb showing in the first half against Ole Miss. Will Sheppard is a beast on the outside and the Commodores have something in Freshman QB AJ Swann. Again, despite the loss, Vanderbilt showed something for their standards.

Ole Miss struggled in the first half but answered the bell in the second half as Jaxson Dart threw for 448 yards in an eventual route of Vanderbilt. The Rebs have yet to put a complete game together, but they fall in this category because they showed us two things they haven’t yet: an effective passing game and a competent second half offense.

Will Rogers for Mississippi State is now the all time leader in SEC history in pass completions. I mean when you throw it 1-5 yards every throw, you can rack ‘em up, but pop off king. The Bulldogs are taking care of business and make for some interesting games upcoming against the Crimson Tide and of course the Egg Bowl could have massive implications.

Is What It Is

South Carolina went on the road and beat a Kentucky team without the best QB the school has probably ever had, so good for Shane Beamer likely securing the needed extra win beyond Vandy and Mizzou to get the Gamecocks into a bowl game.

Speaking of Mizzou, the Tigers are suddenly playing the role of pest and the Gators barely disposed of them in The Swamp. Florida are what they are, but it is Billy Napier’s first year so let’s have some patience. At least Missouri is being competitive and trying to make things interesting each week.