OK !!! Let’s see a show of hands. All of you who, back in August, predicted that it would be Auburn and Missouri in this week’s SEC Championship Game. Un huh, just as I thought. Not many hands going up. Even as the Dueling Tigers prepare to make their way to town we are still coming to grips with how it all happened.
A college football season lasts roughly 3 months.Where we live the suspense, hype and build up lasts for the better part of the other 9 . Last weekend we saw that when bitter rivals fight until the final play in the final second of the final game of the season, even the so called experts can walk away shaking their heads.
An Auburn team that flew below the radar until after mid-season followed up it’s” Miracle At Jordan-Hare” vs Georgia with an encore that sent shockwaves through the nation’s college football landscape. A 56 yard field goal attempt falls short allowing Chris Davis to gather it in and make a mad dash into Iron Bowl immortality,while claiming a place in college football folklore. A rare Nick Saban coaching blunder would leave Alabama’s three-peat dream in ashes and send the Tigers on the road to the Georgia Dome.
Just a few minutes before the frantic finish that derailed Alabama’s return to the SEC Championship Game, Georgia was putting the finishing touches on a double over time win over Georgia Tech at Bobby Dodd Stadium. The Jackets seemed on their way to vanquishing their rivals when the Georgia defense showed up and Todd Gurley’s running reminded us all why, back in August, we thought there would a good chance for a rematch between the Bulldogs and Crimson Tide in Atlanta.
Mark Richt’s team is a perfect example of all that can happen in the timespan if a college football season. The Bulldogs rebounded from the setback at Clemson to reel off 4 in a row that included wins over South Carolina and LSU and even with the injuries they seemed to have cleared the early season hurdles. Then came the 6th game on the schedule on October 12th.
That leads us to the Missouri Tigers , the Rodney Dangerfield’s of college football. Can I just say that I can’t recall a team that folks wanted to see lose so badly that simply refused to do so. Maybe it’s because Missouri is geographically located west of the Mississippi River, but they compete in the SEC East, or perhaps it’s the fact they are in just their second year in the SEC,and they are just not supposed to be that good yet.
With an overtime loss to Steve Spurrier’s Gamecocks their only blemish, Gary Pinkel’s team scored a convincing win in Athens, and last weekend shutdown “Johnny Football” and the Aggies. Still Missouri gets no respect. We have waited all season for the wheels to fall off the wagon and this week Truman and the crew will roll into the A-Town and play second fiddle to the Auburn Tent Revival that has collected loads of converts the past two weeks.
Yes, I like Auburn, but it’s awful hard to go against a team that simply refuses to lose like Missouri. I still can’t help having the feeling that even if Mizzou wins Saturday there will still be critics who will say,” nice win, but they didn’t play Alabama.” I tell you, If Rodney Dangerfield were alive, and in an Atlanta this week, he would like the Missouri Tigers.. You see, they have a lot in common.