GAMBLE: SEC down to business as usual

Features column

T. Gamble

T. Gamble

It is that time of year when I review all the SEC football teams, as one of them almost always will be the national champ, unless, of course, you are Vanderbilt, in which case Bowling Green has better odds.

Georgia got an early jump on its long standing tradition of collapsing after receiving a high preseason ranking by losing the opener to Clemson. Mark Richt should alone shoulder the blame as it was all his fault. Everyone knows you don’t schedule a team like Clemson early.

Vince Dooley would have never done such a thing, instead leading off against Slippery Rock, Ball State, and then Prairie View. Before each game he would have announced such gems as, “Slippery Rock is the toughest 0-10 team in the nation and will be a real test.” Georgia will probably lose again soon, but then win its last nine games in a row, leading all Bulldog fans to claim, “Next year, we will win it all” and result in a preseason ranking in the top 5, so they can start the merry go round again.

Auburn has a new coach and not much else. They hired the offensive genius Gus Malzhon, who is mainly a genius because he coached Cam Newton to a Heisman trophy. Never mind that Richard Simmons could have probably done the same. His main weapon is his advanced passing scheme, which is so complicated no defense can keep up with it. In the home opener against lowly Washington State, it clicked like a well-oiled machine to the tune of 99 total passing yards. Maybe the ball was oiled instead, but at least Auburn won.

They should be fine next week against Arkansas State and then we’ll try to change leagues and join the Ivy League because the SEC may be rough on us this year. We’re in our semi-decade down cycle right now, but should improve in about two years once the boosters get up enough money to fund another Cam Newton.

Alabama just keeps on rolling, destroying Virginia Tech. They are expected to set another SEC record next week at the home opener for the largest number of beer guts assembled at one location. They’ll spend at least half the game making fun of Auburn for having a Tiger as a mascot, but using War Eagle as a battle cry, never once stopping to consider they are the Crimson Tide but have an Elephant as a mascot. They might lose once this year, that is if the New England Patriots join the SEC.

LSU opened strong and head coach Les Miles looked like he just ate a two-pound lemon in the post-game interview. I tell you, he has more tics than a Timex watch. No one will want to come to Death Valley this year with all the liquor drinking, tobacco chewing, cussing and fighting. It is hard to believe children can act like this at a game and they tell me the adults are even worse than that. They should win 11 games.

South Carolina, with humble Steve Spurrier, is chomping at the bit to get at Georgia and make it four in a row. The over and under on visor throwing is now up to 10, and I think Steve will leave the game unhappy. He beat North Carolina last week, but so will the Citadel.

Texas A&M proved once again that a Heisman trophy winner in the SEC cannot be disqualified. Johnny Manziel sat out a half, giving him just enough pent up aggression to replace Miley Cyrus as the biggest fool of the week. He’ll play Alabama in two weeks and I’d suggest he sign a few more autographs so maybe they’ll hold him out of that one. ‘Bama boys do not like sign language from opposing quarterbacks and will probably have the slit-throat maneuver as their gesture for him.

Florida is back in business and in the top 10. They’ll stay there until they meet Alabama, LSU, Georgia, A&M, or blue jean shorts are outlawed. Head coach Will Muschamp announced a new get-tough-on-rule-breakers program which declares anyone who gets in trouble with the law or breaks a team rule will be suspended indefinitely, unless they are a starter or at least play on special teams. It is modeled after Alabama’s successful almost-zero tolerance program.

Vanderbilt will not win the title, but all its players will be in positions of authority over all the other SEC school player graduates once they enter the job market, which presupposes that any of them will actually ever enter the job market. They will be the only school in which players major in things like engineering and physics instead of early childhood development (an AU favorite) or general management.

All the rest of the teams will be about 8-4 and better than any conference winner from the other minor league conferences, which are all the conferences that are not the SEC. Graduation rates for players will remain around 5 percent and composed of kickers, punters and long snappers. They will continue to be role models for our children and most Alabama fans. Liquor will be absolutely banned at each stadium and more liquor per capita consumed at the game than at a strip club. Public address announcers will encourage fans to be sportsmanlike and treat opposing fans kindly and a Florida fan will dump a two-liter coke on whoever he can find. The crowd will yell B.S. at bad calls and then go to church on Sunday.

Yep, it is the SEC baby and I can’t wait!

Contact T. Gamble at wtg@colliergamble.com.