Thursday, November 21, 2013
SEC race update: Week 13
By Alex Scarborough
The SEC championship race will play out over the next two weeks.
It's no surprise that top-ranked Alabama remains in the driver's seat in the SEC West at 7-0 in conference play, but No. 6 Auburn has come out of nowhere and is nipping at the Tide's heels after a dramatic victory over Georgia.
In the SEC East, No. 8 Missouri continues to sit atop the scrum with one conference loss.
With that, let's have a look at how the division races are shaping up with only a handful of regular-season games remaining.
- The Iron Bowl, for the first time in its history, will serve as a play-in game for the SEC Championship game. With Alabama undefeated (10-0, 7-0 SEC) and Auburn with one loss (10-1, 6-1), the team that wins on Nov. 30 at Jordan-Hare Stadium will move on to Atlanta and a chance to play the winner of the East. The loser will finish second in the division.
- The second rung of the West is far less clear, though. Texas A&M leads the pack with two losses, but Ole Miss and LSU aren't far behind with three losses each. Because of that, Saturday's game between LSU and Texas A&M is huge. But even if the Aggies win out and finish with two losses, they can do no better than third because Auburn and Alabama each hold a head-to-head tiebreaker.
- Missouri (9-1, 5-1) is in the same position it was two weeks ago -- Mizzou was off last week. If the Tigers win their next two games, against Ole Miss and Texas A&M, they're in the SEC Championship game. One loss, though, and they're out of a trip to Atlanta as South Carolina (8-2, 6-2) is finished with its conference schedule and already holds a head-to-head tiebreaker with Missouri after beating the Tigers on Oct. 26.
- Georgia, by way of its heartbreaking loss at Auburn last weekend, is officially out of the race. The best the Bulldogs can hope for now is a third-place finish. But if Georgia loses to Kentucky on Saturday and Vanderbilt beats Tennessee, we could be looking at the Commodores in third place, tied at four conference losses each but holding the tiebreaker by way of their head-to-head victory.