Chat with Greg Ostendorf
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, ESPN.com's SEC reporter Greg Ostendorf will stop by to talk some college football.
Ostendorf joined ESPN.com in 2012 covering the Southeast Conference and Alabama football for TideNation.
Send your questions now and join Ostendorf Thursday at 1 p.m. ET!
LSU-UGA. Athelete for Athelete I think Tigers have more raw talent. With UGA corners their weak spot and LSU having a stable of backs.....but UGA obviously has Gurley and a great QB...who wins?
Greg Ostendorf (1:02 PM)
For me, it all comes down to Zach Mettenberger. He's improved drastically from last year, but how will he handle the atmosphere in Athens? If he plays well, LSU wins. It helps having guys like Jeremy Hill, Odell Beckham and Jarvis Landry around. I'm taking LSU, 31-24.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
What SEC College Football Team has the Best & the Worst Defense in 2013?
Greg Ostendorf (1:07 PM)
Best defense is Florida. Losing Easley will hurt, but they're still at the top of the conference. I'm still waiting to see how they do against a top offense like Georgia or South Carolina, but they're impressive. Worse defense, I'd say Tennessee. The Vols are improved, but Oregon ran it up on them. I don't see them stopping any of the top offenses in the conference either.
Is South Carolinas defense going to be able to stop the ucf offense
Greg Ostendorf (1:08 PM)
They need to play better than they did against Georgia. UCF's Storm Johnson is one of the better RBs in all of college football. I still think the Gamecocks win, but they better be careful. Look for Johnson to still get 100 yards and a touchdown.
While it's still early I am concerned about Bama's ability to defend LSU and UGA (in possible SECCG). I'm just not sure Bama's O could outscore them like they did A&M. The run/pass balance of LSU and UGA are scary.
Greg Ostendorf (1:10 PM)
Alabama better be careful this weekend, but clearly LSU and Georgia present more difficult matchups. At this stage, I don't like the Tide's chances against either one. They have time to get healthy and fix the problems, but they need to do it fast. Playing LSU at home will help.
Coach Saban concerned about his team or he knows just inexperience and early season growing pains.
Greg Ostendorf (1:12 PM)
I think there's some legitimate concern, mainly on defense. They're still trying to piece that secondary, but the SEC has turned into a QB league this year and there are multiple guys who could pick Alabama apart right now.
Is Jadaveon Clowney ever going to be the same?!?
Greg Ostendorf (1:14 PM)
I think he'll be fine. He's too good to keep down all season. Teams will try and take him out of the game by running away from him or making quick passes, but eventually, he'll make his presence felt.
What will it take for Mizzou to gain respect/relevancy in the SEC?
Greg Ostendorf (1:17 PM)
Knocking off one of the SEC powers (Florida, Georgia, Alabama, LSU, etc.). I think they have a legitimate shot to beat Florida this year which would help. Even a win over South Carolina would go a long way in gaining respect. If not, they are what Mississippi State has been over the last five years.
Phillip (A stadium near you)
Greg, why is the Ole Miss- Bama game being played in Tuscaloosa for the 2nd year in a row after playing home and home since 1992. I can't see how added Texas A&M to the western division should have changed how they schedule this game.What am I missing?
Greg Ostendorf (1:20 PM)
It has to do with the new scheduling changes. When they added Missouri and Texas A&M, it took away the traditional schedules. I think the SEC will eventually go to a nine-game SEC conference schedule which will help avoid these types of situations.
jake roberts : billings, montana [via mobile]
Does Florida have a chance for an sec title run with Murphy as their starter?
Greg Ostendorf (1:21 PM)
Not this year. There are too many good teams in the conference. As good as that defense is, they can't shut out a team like Georgia or South Carolina. I just don't think Murphy can keep pace in a game like that. Losing Easley was a big loss, too.
Nick (San Antonio)
Take away stats and look at the clutch factor. What SEC QB do you want on your team down 4 with 2 minutes to go from your own 20?
Greg Ostendorf (1:25 PM)
I like both AJ McCarron and Aaron Murray in that situation, but I have to go with Johnny Manziel. I think he's the most talented of the group, and he makes plays when he needs to. It also helps to have a WR like Mike Evans to throw the ball to down the stretch.
LSU's D has not been impressive. How exactly do you figure they will hold UGA to 24 points? Not happening. I see a 38-35 tossup game. Give me the home team.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
Will the struggling Georgia defense be able to stop the powerful LSU running game and force Zach Mettenberger to beat them on the road?
Greg Ostendorf (1:27 PM)
I don't think Georgia can stop Jeremy Hill and that LSU running game. Mettenberger still has to make plays, but Hill will get his yards. If UGA wants to win, they have to score 35+ points in my opinion.
RAYGOERDON REID ( americus GA 31709)
question to greg at 1.40 aggies or razorbacks
Greg Ostendorf (1:29 PM)
Aggies. Manziel will be too much for Arkansas.
Jordan (In Music Appreciation at USC)
Hey, im a huge South Carolina fan, is central floridas quarterback actually good enough to beat South Carolina...I heard some stuff as if he was a heisman candidate?
Greg Ostendorf (1:31 PM)
I actually like UCF's running back Storm Johnson more, but Blake Bortles is talented, too. I don't think they can beat South Carolina, but their offense will put up points.
Tony (South Carolina)
Connor Shaw left practice yesterday with Back Spasms. Do you have any idea if he'll be able to play Saturday>
Greg Ostendorf (1:32 PM)
I haven't heard anything indicating that he won't play. He might not be 100 percent, but I'd expect him out there Saturday.
Keenan (Atlanta, GA)
Are the struggles in the Bama secondary more due to a lack of talent or experience?
Greg Ostendorf (1:36 PM)
It's more lack of experience. John Fulton and Bradley Sylve aren't as talented as some of the younger guys, but those guys haven't stepped up yet because they're still learning the system. Remember, Cyrus Jones was playing offense last year. They also have a lot of talented freshman CBs who just need more experience.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
Will LSU sign Fournette, Tony Brown, and Speedy Noil when then recruiting dust clears in February? What other top recruits are likely to sign with the Tigers?
Greg Ostendorf (1:39 PM)
I like their chances with all three. Alabama will battle to the end on Fournette, but right now I'd say LSU is the favorite. Noil's teammate Gerald Willis III, the brother of Landon Collins, will also likely sign with the Tigers. I think they end up with a top 3 class when it's all said and done.
Jeff (Tampa, FL)
Will the Muschamp pursue a second quarterback to join Will Grier in this class, or two in 2015, given the struggles of Jeff Driskel, and the uncertainty at the position?
Greg Ostendorf (1:42 PM)
It wouldn't shock me. They do have Max Staver, a true freshman who has a big arm. If they do go after another QB in 2014, it would have to be a more under-the-radar type player. They need to make Grier feel like he's still the guy.
Morgan (Dawg House )
Who has the bigger game Murray or Mettenberger and Who has the bigger game between Gurley and Hill?
Greg Ostendorf (1:44 PM)
I actually think Murray has the better game between the two QBs, but I think Hill ends up with better stats than Gurley. Hill has been playing with a chip on his shoulder since he returned to the field in week two.
Jeff (Tampa, FL)
What is the latest on Easley? Is he done for the year?
Greg Ostendorf (1:45 PM)
He is out for the season. The school announced it Wednesday.
Keenan (Atlanta, GA)
Georgia missed on a number of top in state recruits last year? Do you think the Dawgs fair better in 2014? Which prospects are at the top of Richt's wish list?
Greg Ostendorf (1:49 PM)
Georgia has already struck out on a couple of the top in-state prospects for 2014, but they have a chance to finish strong. DE Lorenzo Carter the No. 1 target, although Florida might have a slight lead for him right now. LB Raekwon McMillan and DT Elisha Shaw are also on the Dawgs' wish list.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
Why hasn't Spurrier been able to land the top notch Quarterbacks he had at Florida and produce similar offensive production? The state of South Carolina is loaded with talent?
Greg Ostendorf (1:53 PM)
That's always been a mystery to me. The Gamecocks were a finalist for Drew Barker who chose to stay home and play for Kentucky, but they were hardly mentioned with Jacob Park, a South Carolina native who committed to UGA. I do like Connor Mitch, the kid they signed in last year's class.
Morgan (Dawg House )
how do you see the est and west wraping up this year, who gets to Atlanta?
Greg Ostendorf (1:57 PM)
My guess is Georgia from the East and the winner of Alabama-LSU in the West. Right now, I think it could be a rematch of this weekend's game in Athens, but Alabama still has time to right the ship before the Tigers come to town in November.
jason (south carolina)
do you see the gamecocks losing another game this year?
Greg Ostendorf (2:00 PM)
Outside of Clemson, no. Their schedule sets up pretty nice the rest of the way. Keep an eye on the Missouri game Oct. 26. I'm not sure what to make of the Tigers yet, but if James Franklin and Henry Josey stay healthy, they could give South Carolina a run for their money.
Greg Ostendorf (2:01 PM)
That's all I have time for today. Thanks for the questions. Enjoy all the games this Saturday.