LSU / SEC Week 4 Picks

I’m celebrating this week, because it may be the last time until Halloween that I feel somewhat comfortable in picking LSU to win. Simply put, I can’t project greatness for this team based upon past performance. Maybe things will improve. I certainly hope so, because this isn’t a team I’m comfortable with right now.

But let’s forget our troubles this week and focus on Mississippi State. Of course this is a winnable game for No. 7 LSU. The Tigers’ ugly offense should be able to pound through a Bulldog defense that gave up 390 rushing yards and 6.6 yards per carry to Auburn. If LSU can’t, well this team’s troubles are deep.

Statistically, however, these teams are pretty comparable. LSU has produced 325 yards and 28.3 points per game against Washington, Vandy and USL. MSU has produced 349 yards and 28 points per game against Jackson State, Auburn and Vandy. Defensively, the Tigers have given up 320 yards and 11.7 points per game; the Bulldogs 313 yards and 19.7 points (including 49 points vs. Auburn). Call it a bias, but I have to figure this LSU team coming off of 8-5 and two years removed from a national championship is better than this MSU team coming off 4-8 and installing a new coaching staff.

And that’s pretty much what I have to go on – the assumption that LSU is a better team. They certainly haven’t given us much to demonstrate that through the first three games.

LSU 19 – 15

Elsewhere in the SEC:

No. 5 Ole Miss at South Carolina. The Thursday SEC abomination. A quick aside – it’s an absolute joke that Ole Miss is ranked No. 5 having played only Memphis and Southeastern Louisiana. The Rebels started the season at an inflated No. 10 and have moved up through attrition. Meanwhile No. 13 Miami began the season as No. 31 and have beaten Florida State and Georgia Tech. No thinking brain on the planet would put Ole Miss’ body of work to this point ahead of Miami’s. But be that as it may, it’s the Nutt and Cocks show (sorry) on Thursday night in South Carolina. I can’t put rational analysis against what Ole Miss has done this year, so I’m going to go with the flu, a somewhat desperate Spurrier, lack of trial for the Rebels, home-field advantage and Thursday Night Madness.

Cocks 38 – 35

Arkansas at No. 3 Alabama. A pass-happy, one-dimensional team with no defense against Fonzie. I’m betting on Bama to be able to slow down or stop the Hogs’ offense and to be effective moving the ball and scoring.

Bama 31 – 24

No. 1 Florida at Kentucky. Angry, angry Gators. How dare you doubt the Chosen One? Barring a bigger funk than showed itself against Tennessee, Florida will regain its footing against the ‘Cats.

Gators 48 – 20

Arizona State at No. 17 Georgia. There’s not a lot to go on with Arizona State. Wins over Idaho State and UL-Monroe don’t mean much. I guess we can assume Georgia does have a potent passing attack, and at some point they might get a running game. Their defense should be able to outlast whatever the Sun Devils bring.

Dawgs 45 – 31

Ball State at Auburn. War Eagles are gonna cut it loose in advance of their trips to Tennessee and Arkansas. They need a nice blowout to cap their 4-0 start.

Auburn 59 – 6

Ohio at Tennessee. Ah, it’s like the old days, when Western Kentucky came to town. Turn Crompton loose!

Vols 48 – 10

Vanderbilt at Rice. Bringing the ‘Dores back to .500!

Vandy 24 – 10

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2 Responses to “LSU / SEC Week 4 Picks”

  1. Howard Fore says:

    I totally agree with you about Ole Miss, I laugh a little every time I see that ranking because it’s based on nothing. Then again, I think that rankings shouldn’t be issued until after the first 3-4 games.

  2. Cap'n Ken says:

    The computer ranking systems wait for just that reason – not enough data to draw conclusions at this point. There’s no default to “make shit up based on last year’s Cotton Bowl” in those systems. Ole Miss, at least, will have to prove itself. You go through Alabama, LSU, Auburn, Arkansas, South Carolina, Tennessee with no more than one loss and then win the SECCG, I’ll call you a top team. Contrast that with No. 4 Penn State, who sits there having played Akron, Syracuse and Temple and only faces anything close to real tests against Michigan (if you believe Michigan) and Ohio State.

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