Monday, October 30, 2017

Alabama, Georgia, and five other SEC teams are bowl eligible.

South Carolina, Kentucky, and Mississippi State joined Alabama, Georgia, Auburn, and LSU into the ranks of SEC teams securing bowl eligibility with their respective sixth wins. Texas A&M is 5-3, and the only team in the conference that needs one more game for bowl eligibility.

Time is running out for the rest of the conference's hopes of guaranteed bowl eligibility. Of course if you're Florida, whether or not you go to a bowl is the least of your concerns right now.

So here's the more in-depth look at the state of the SEC following the end of Week 9. Just to shake things up, the bowl projections CBS Sports' Jerry Palm, and SB*Nation's Jason Kirk will both be used. Other prognosticators's projections will be used if neither Palm or Kirk project a team getting s bowl bid.

Six or more wins (Bowl eligible)

SEC East 

Georgia (8-0, conference 5-0)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. South Carolina

Nov. 11 @ Auburn

Nov. 18 vs. Kentucky

Nov. 25 @ Georgia Tech

Georgia is 8-0, ranked no. 2 in the nation by both the AP and the Coaches polls, and all but certain to represent the SEC East in the SEC Championship Game. Nervous Bulldog Nation members who are having a difficult time handling the team's success can find solace in this line from R.E.M.'s "Pilgrmage:"

"Rest assured this will not last, take a turn for the worst.

South Carolina, Auburn, Kentucky and Georgia Tech could all spoil what could be a history-making season for Georgia.

Projected bowl and opponent 

Jerry Palm: 2017 Orange Bowl vs. Miami (Dec. 30, Miami, FL.)

Jason Kirk: 2018 Rose Bowl Game vs. Ohio State (Jan 1, 2018, Pasadena, CA. College Football Playoff semifinal)

Kirk projects a no. 2 Ohio State facing a no. 3 Georgia in the Rose Bowl. Georgia's only Rose Bowl appearance came on Jan. 1, 1943, when the Bulldogs beat UCLA 9-0.

As for Palm, the "ICWYDT" pick of Georgia facing a Mark Richt led Miami is getting kind of old, but there is an outside chance Miami could be in the CFP if it wins the ACC title.

South Carolina (6-2, conference 4-2)

Next four games 

Nov. 4 @ UGA

Nov. 11 vs. Florida

Nov. 18 vs. Wofford

Nov. 25 vs. Clemson

South Carolina could see a month where if plays spoiler for both UGA and Clemson's CFP hopes.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: 2017 Liberty Bowl vs. West Virginia (Dec. 30, Memphis, TN.)

Kirk: 2017 Taxpayer Bowl vs. Louisville (Dec. 30, Jacksonville, FL.)

South Carolina facing either West Virginia or Louisville sound like a good matchup.

Kentucky (6-2, conference 3-2)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. Ole Miss

Nov. 11 @ Vanderbilt

Nov. 18 @ UGA

Nov. 25 vs. Louisville

Kentucky is in the clear bowl-wise, but getting upset by either Ole Miss or Vanderbilt would still look at least some what embarrassing.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: 2017 Music City Bowl vs. Iowa (Dec. 29, Nashville, TN.)

Kirk: 2017 Liberty Bowl vs. Iowa State

The Wildcats could be fated to face an opponent from the state of Iowa this postseason.

SEC West

Alabama (8-0 conference 5-0)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. LSU

Nov. 11 @ Mississippi State

Nov. 18 vs. Mercer

Nov. 25 @ Auburn

Let's not even fathom FCS school Mercer upsetting Alabama. A resurgent LSU or Mississippi St. could throw a wrench in 'Bama's hopes for a second CFP title in three years before then.

Projected bowl and opponent 

Palm: 2018 Sugar Bowl vs. Penn State (Jan. 1, 2018, New Orleans, LA.)

Kirk: 2018 Sugar Bowl vs. Clemson

The Sugar Bowl will host the no. 1 vs. no. 4 CFP semifinal this postseason. Palm is still projecting Alabama and Clemson facing Penn St. and Ohio St. respectively. Kirk goes the saner route, and has 'Bama facing Clemson.

Auburn (6-2, conference 4-1)

Next four games

Nov. 4 @ Texas A&M

Nov. 11 vs. Georgia

Nov. 18 vs. Louisiana-Monroe

Nov. 25 vs. Alabama

Auburn may be the catbird seat as it faces both Georgia and Alabama on the Plains. The Tigers face Texas A&M in College Station, so odds are greater for a loss there.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm:  2018 Citrus Bowl vs. Michigan State (Jan. 1, 2018, Orlando, FL.)

Kirk: 2018 Outback Bowl vs. Michigan (Jan. 1, 2018, Tampa, FL.)

Palm continues to project an Auburn vs. Mich. St. Citrus Bowl. Kirk had Auburn facing West Virginia in the 2018 Liberty Bowl last week, so the Outback Bowl would be an upgrade for the Tigers.

LSU (6-2, conference 3-1) 

Next four games

Nov. 4 @ Alabama

Nov. 11 vs. Arkansas

Nov. 18 @ Tennessee

Nov. 25 vs. Texas A&M

Fun game: guess how many of LSU's final three opponents of the regular season will have fired by the time they face the Tigers.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: 2018 Outback Bowl vs. Michigan

Kirk: 2018 Citrus Bowl vs. Mich. St.

Sense a pattern here? Auburn facing either the Wolverines or the Spartans would have been a marquee postseason matchup just a season of two ago.

Mississippi State (6-2, conference 3-2)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. UMass

Nov. 11 vs. Alabama

Nov. 18 @ Arkansas

Nov. 23 vs. Ole Miss

Mississippi St. was pummeled by SEC East-leading Georgia 31-3 back in Week 4. The possibility of a similar-type game against Alabama should be quite a possibility.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: 2017 Taxslayer Bowl vs. North Carolina State

Kirk: 2017 Texas Bowl vs. Texas Tech. (Dec. 27, Houston, TX.)

Let the "Will Dan Mullen have left Mississippi St. for Florida, Tennessee, or another program before the Bulldogs' bowl game" sweepstakes begin!

Five games (Magic number: 1)

SEC East 


SEC West 

Texas A&M (5-3, conference 3-2)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. Auburn

Nov. 11 vs. New Mexico

Nov. 18 @ Ole Miss

Nov. 25 @ LSU

New Mexico the obvious best place for a sixth win.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: 2017 Belk Bowl vs. Georgia Tech (Dec. 29, Charlotte, NC)

Kirk: 2017 Music City Bowl vs. Indiana

The Belk Bowl would be the more ideal destination between it and the Music City Bowl for The Aggies.

Three wins (Magic number: 3)

SEC East 

Florida (3-4, conference 3-3)

Next four games

Nov. 4 @ Missouri

Nov. 11 @ South Carolina

Nov. 18 vs. UAB

Nov. 25 vs. Florida State

Will Florida be able to right the ship following the firing of former head coach Jim McElwain? If Florida St. wan't in the same downward spiral as the Gators are, it would be difficulty to say yes.

Wins against Missouri and UAB would be most favorable for Florida's bowl hopes. Then it would be up for the Gators to pull out a win against either the Gamecocks or the Seminoles.

Projected bowl and opponent 

Eric Single, 2017 Belk Bowl vs. Wake Forrest

Single was the only one of five bowl prognosticators to project Florida going to a bowl following its dismantling by Georgia.

Missouri (3-5, conference 0-4)

Next three games 

Nov. 4 vs. Florida

Nov. 11 vs. Tennessee

Nov. 18 @ Vanderbilt

Nov. 24 @ Arkansas

Florida, Tennessee, and Arkansas have all underperformed so far in the 2017 season, so there are good chances for one or more wins there.

Projected bowl and opponent 

David M, Hale, ESPN: 2017 Birmingham Bowl vs. Memphis (Dec. 23, Birmingham, AL.)

Hale was the only prognosticator surveyed that projected a bowl bid for Missouri.

Tennessee (3-5, conference 0-5)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. Southern Mississippi

Nov. 11 @ Missouri

Nov. 18 vs. LSU

Nov. 25 vs. Vanderbilt

Hosting LSU and Vanderbilt does everything to give Tennessee some hope for the postseason.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: 2017 Texas Bowl vs. Texas

Kirk: None

Hale projects Tennessee heading to Jacksonville to face Wake Forest in the 2017 TaxSlayer Bowl. His partner, Ken Bonagura, sees Tennessee facing Texas in the 2017 Liberty Bowl.

Vanderbilt (3-5, conference 0-5)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs. Western Kentucky

Nov. 11 vs. Kentucky

Nov. 18 vs. Missouri

Nov. 25 @ Tennessee

Three straight home games should work in Sandy's favor.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm 2017 Birmingham Bowl vs. Memphis

Kirk: 2017 Belk Bowl vs. Georgia Tech

Vanderbilt vs. Georgia Tech? NERD BOWL!

SEC West

Arkansas (3-5, conference 1-4)

Next four games

Nov. 4 vs Costal Carolina

Nov. 11 @ LSU

Nov. 18 vs. Mississippi St.

Nov. 24 vs. Missouri

Costal Carolina is the easy win for Arkansas. LSU and Mississippi St. could turn out to both be huge or the Razorbacks' bowl hopes.

Projected bowl and opponent

Palm: None
Kirk: None

None of the bowl prognosticators surveyed believe Bret Bielema will be able to lead Arkansas to a bowl this postseason. That's not good news for his continued employment in Fayetteville.

1 comment:

Kerry Schultz said...

That will be a great news for the fans and the players as well. They will get the chance to prove themselves and the fans will witness their teams in the bowl.