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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) robs a home run from Florida infielder Cade Kurland (4) in the top of the ninth inning during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 15, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
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Around the SEC: Week 7

SEC Logo
SEC Logo

As the second half of the season begins, the SEC lands eight teams in the top 25 and is proving to be the most dominant conference in college football. Alabama and Georgia remain the leaders of the West and East, respectively, but the rest of the league is still hunting for a shot at the title as all teams battle it out going forward. Here’s a look at SEC action going into week seven:
No. 2 Georgia (6-0) at No. 13 LSU (5-1)
Saturday, Oct. 13 — Tiger Stadium — Baton Rouge, Louisiana 2:30 p.m. on CBS
In arguably the biggest conference game this week, Georgia goes to face their first true test against a proven LSU team backed by an intimidating crowd in Death Valley. This matchup will feature two stout defenses with major NFL talent and two quarterbacks looking to make their mark. Georgia, led by sophomore quarterback Jake Fromm, has one of the strongest offenses in the nation, as they are averaging 485 yards and 42 points a game. Fromm has been impressive as well, throwing for 200 yards a game with 12 touchdowns and two interceptions, but he may struggle as this LSU defense will be the first legitimate opponent he’s faced all season. The Bulldogs’ SEC-leading defense only allows 283 yards a game and will likely shine against an LSU offense that typically averages 392 yards per match. The Tigers are led by junior quarterback Joe Burrow, who looks to rebound after a tough outing in Gainesville, where he threw his first interceptions of the season. Overall, Burrow has played well for LSU throughout the season, averaging 202 yards per game, but he will have to improve his accuracy and effectiveness if he hopes to lead the Tigers to a win. On the other side of the ball, LSU has one of the most feared defensive units in the nation with wins over Auburn, Miami and Ole Miss. Watch for Georgia to get caught off guard early, but improve their play in the second half to take the win.
Prediction: Georgia 27, LSU 17

No. 1 Alabama (6-0) vs. Missouri (3-2)
Saturday, Oct. 13 — Bryant-Denny Stadium — Tuscaloosa, Alabama 6 p.m. on ESPN
This interdivisional showdown features the best of the West against an Eastern team that is still trying to prove itself. Alabama has thoroughly dominated every opponent they’ve faced so far, winning each game by at least three touchdowns. Alabama hopes to keep that streak up when they face Missouri at home this Saturday. Alabama sophomore quarterback, Tua Tagovailoa, has been dominant in his Heisman campaign, averaging 249 yards a game, with 18 touchdowns and two interceptions. He should have no trouble against a Missouri team that allows 285 yards a game through the air. The Alabama defense is nothing short of spectacular as well, only allowing an average of 332 yards per game and keeping opponents to an average of just 16 points a game. On the other hand, Missouri has played well, especially on offense, where they have a top-10 team nationally. With this said, the Tigers have dropped key games to Georgia and South Carolina and are still trying to find their team identity. Senior Drew Lock averages 248 yards through the air and has thrown 11 touchdowns and four interceptions. His play and decision making will be vital to Missouri’s success, as well as the team’s overall offensive performance. Defensively, the Tigers have struggled, coming in at 77th overall. They will have to play with much improved defense if they hope to slow the Tide’s offense, which ranks fourth nationally. Don’t expect too many surprises in this one.
Prediction: Alabama 54, Missouri 27
No. 21 Auburn (4-2) vs. Tennessee (2-4)
Saturday, Oct. 13 — Jordan-Hare Stadium — Auburn, Alabama 11 a.m. on SECN
This early Saturday matchup pits the struggling Tennessee Volunteers against an Auburn team trying to avoid a possible season derailment. Auburn is following a stunning 23-9 loss to division rival Mississippi State and is on the brink of dropping all preseason hype. The Tigers are led by junior quarterback Jarrett Stidham, who has five touchdowns and two interceptions this season. Freshman running back JaTarvious Whitlow has helped carry Stidham’s burden, but the Tigers have struggled offensively and are ranked 99th in the nation. Defensively, the Tigers are playing great, allowing only 323 yards per game to opponents. Meanwhile, Tennessee is having a rough season, with their only two wins coming from games against Eastern Tennessee State and UTEP. Sophomore quarterback Jarrett Guarantano has struggled, with only four touchdowns and two interceptions, and only throwing for 801 yards total. Defensively, the Volunteers have played decently and are ranked 31st nationally, allowing 340 yards a game. Tennessee will have to lean on their defense when they travel to the Plains for a morning showdown with Auburn. Watch for the Tigers to bounce back as they thoroughly handle the Volunteers at home.
Prediction: Auburn 35, Tennessee 14
No. 14 Florida (5-1) at Vanderbilt (3-3)

Saturday, Oct. 13 — Vanderbilt Stadium — Nashville, Tennessee 11 a.m. on ESPN
This showdown in Nashville will feature a continually improving Florida team against a struggling Vanderbilt. The Gators have looked strong since their loss to Kentucky earlier in the season, with a defense that only allows 321 yards a game and is ranked fourth in the conference. However, Florida’s offense has struggled, averaging only 380 yards a game. They will rely on junior running back Jordan Scarlett to gain some yards on the ground. Scarlett averages 45 yards per game on the ground and is versatile in the pass as well. He and Florida’s other talented backs will get solid yards for the Gators against the Commodores’ defense, which allows almost 400 yards a game. Vanderbilt will have to play lights-out offense and improve their 75th-ranked unit. Led by senior quarterback Kyle Shurmur, Vanderbilt averages just 398 yards per game and will struggle against this imposing Florida front. Watch for the Gators to lead the majority of the contest as they go on to win it.
Prediction: Florida 31, Vanderbilt 13

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