Huck’s Fearless Forecast
Rivalry week across the land. In the SEC that means new coach search week on about half the campuses, but That is another story for another day. A team or two actually jumped the gun and took to the field on Thursday to settle their differences, like Mississippi State and Ole Miss in the Egg Bowl, which is the only bowl game the Rebels will be playing in for a while. That one sort of turned into the egg-on-our-face bowl for the Maroons who should get a pass just for the horror of the sight of their starting quarterback’s violent leg fracture. But, bygones. It’s the weekend, so What the Huck! Let’s pick a few games.
Mizzou at Arkansas. Bye, bye, Bret. People ask me what I have against Bret Bielema. The answer is nothing, except I got tired of all the accolades he received when he came to Fayetteville from the Yankee school who never plays anybody. I think you earn your bones in the SEC before you are declared a coaching legend, and Bielema never did, and won’t have another chance after today.
Tigers 35 Hogs 27
Vanderbilt at Tennessee. Well, just like Bret Bielema, the SEC won’t have Butch Jones to kick around anymore next year—or apparently Jon Gruden—or Chip Kelly. I heard they were going to have a drawing at halftime in Knoxville Saturday and the lucky person whose ticket is drawn gets a choice of coaching the Vols next year or a 101-inch High Definition curved screen TV. I hope they have a room large enough for the TV. Wait til next year Rocky Top.
Dores 21 Orange 17
Louisville at Kentucky. Who cares? It’s basketball season up there.
Texas A&M at LSU. Unfortunately, Kevin Sumlin peaked at A&M when he hung 52 points on the Ol’ Ball Coach on an opening Thursday night back in 2014. Expectations soared and reality never quite lived up and now he will probably be coaching his last game for the Aggies—in another loss. Meanwhile, Ed Orgeron will live to coach another season in Red Stick.
LSU 35 A&M 24
Clem at South Carolina. Clemson’s greatest nightmare could come to fruition in Columbia Saturday night. Having worked their way back into the playoff picture after a startling mid-season loss to Syracuse, nothing could be worse for Dabo Swiney’s team that to be upset in the season finale by Will Mucschump, of all people. It could happen. Carolina plays pretty stout defense, after all and Williams-Brice Stadium has been known to rock and sway just a little bit. I think the ACC Tigers win, but not without a battle. This ain’t the Citadel they are playing this week.
Clemson 24 USC 18
Free Shoes at The Swamp. Talk about a anti-climactic rivalry game. The biggest question will be whether Jimbo Fisher will actually be asked to interview for any of the jobs in which he is rumored to be a candidate. The second biggest question is which team is more anxious to get the season over with. I think that would be the Gators.
Criminoles 31 Florida 14
Aladambama at Awbarn in the Iron Bowl. There is a lot at stake on the Lower Alabama Plain this Saturday. SEC title game and National Championship playoff aspirations and bragging rights are all wrapped up in the contest in lots of ways. But Alabama is the better team and Alabama is going to win the football game. War Eagle, my ass.
Tide 27 Tigers 21
Georgia Bulldogs at The Joke by the Coke. You always have to worry, in this one, that the cheating and dirty chop blocks will bother your defense more than it should and create a struggle for a few quarters. I really can’t explain the last 6-and-a-half-minutes of last year’s game. To hell with Tech. DAWGS on top!
Georgia 38 Nerds 21
Look for me Saturday at Sanford—Dooley Annex West. I’ll be the good-looking guy in the same red outfit that way more than half the stadium will be wearing.
Darrell Huckaby is an author, educator and syndicated newspaper columnist. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.