- Alex Scarborough, ESPN Staff Writer
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The ultimate SEC road trip is back. The best games. The best venues. The best atmospheres. If you could pick your destination every Saturday, where would you go?
This year, we're taking two road trips, both hypothetical of course. Our writers might end up at the same game some weeks, but this should allow us to see more teams and more campuses across the SEC.
Let's check in on what's in store for Week 7.
Road trip 1: Alabama at Texas A&M
By this point, I will have already seen my fair share of Alabama with games against Arkansas and Georgia. But I haven’t seen the new Kyle Field, and that can’t wait any longer. I mean, the stadium was enormous enough before. Now, thanks to a $450 million renovation, it seats 102,500, which is more than any school in the SEC and more than any in the super-sized state of Texas. To make matters worse for opposing teams, they have lowered the field to increase crowd noise.
But my trip to College Station will be about more than sight-seeing, of course. The game should be pretty good, too. And though the suspected season-long subplot of John Chavis working on A&M’s defense will be interesting, I want to see what happens when Kevin Sumlin's offense goes up against Alabama. The first two times they met the Tide gave up a combined 71 points and 1,046 yards. But last season's game was a blowout in which the Aggies failed to score a single point.
So does this mean Nick Saban and Kirby Smart have solved Sumlin’s version of the spread? I might have thought so before the tail end of the season against Auburn, Missouri and Ohio State, but now I have my doubts.
-- Alex Scarborough
Road trip 2: Missouri at Georgia
You know the Bulldogs are still steaming about how last season ended. Remember when Georgia absolutely embarrassed Mizzou 34-0 in Columbia, only to watch the Tigers strut into Atlanta for the SEC title game? Yeah, the Bulldogs had the SEC East locked up, but gave Mizzou life with an 18-point loss to an offensively inept Florida team later in the season.
Plus, the last time these two met in Athens, the Tigers walked out with a victory. Along with a grilled assortment of fatty meats, revenge will be in the air between the hedges, and I can’t help but think this game will go a long way toward determining who comes out of the East, again. Mizzou isn’t as equipped on either side of the ball as it has been the past two seasons, but counting the Tigers out has proved to be foolish of late.
With the talent returning to Athens this fall, it appears the East is Georgia’s to win, but we’ve seen this movie before. This game means a ton to both teams.
-- Edward Aschoff
17hEdward Aschoff and Alex Scarborough
15hAlex Scarborough and Greg Ostendorf
5dAlex Scarborough and Greg Ostendorf