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September 19, 12:00 PM ET
Chat with Edward Aschoff

Edward Aschoff
  (12:01 PM)

Greetings, everyone. There is a little chill in the air and football is getting a little more intense. That means it really is the best time of the year. Anyone up for joining some super conferences? Let's talk some SEC football.

Gabriel (D.C.)

After seeing Florida in it's first SEC matchup against Tennessee; how do you access this young Florida football team, and what do you feel like they need to work on most to prepare for their brutle October schedule?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:04 PM)

I like the defense, but it still makes mistakes (5 dropped interceptions and 5 pass interference calls) that have to be corrected before the Gators play Alabama. The offense is still pretty pedestrian unless Chris Rainey or Jeff Demps touches the ball. Without Rainey, I think this team is sunk. But the passing game needs to find ways to stretch the ball down the field. The deep threats aren't getting much separation and when you play much more talented defenses that is going to put even more pressure on your running game.

Matthew (Oxford, MS)

Ed, it seems a foregone conclusion that Auburn will look to change defensive coordinators before next season. What are the chances though that Ted Roof doesn't survive this season?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:06 PM)

Auburn's defense has been pretty bad this season, but let's not immediately jump to conclusions. It was one loss. Granted this defense seems to be getting worse before it gets better, but I thiink Gene Chizik will make the proper adjustments going forward. How much will this unit improve? Who knows, but things have to change, whether it's schemes, techniques or personnel. Let's hold off on calling for someone's job. He isn't the one missing tackles and blowing coverages.

Caleb Cummings (Florence, AL)

What is your thought on Tennessee now that they have played in the swamp and came out with a few "Scars" as Coach DD puts it. Do you think that they can still contend in the SEC and have a successful season after losing Hunter?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:08 PM)

I really liked Tennessee's passing game with Hunter in the lineup. That is a huge blow to him and the team. I feel for the guy. He's a good person and a special player. He was Tennessee's best receiver. A lot of pressure is now Da'Rick Rogers and Tyler Bray. The running game has to improve mightily if this team wants to make a run at the SEC. I was impressed with how the defense played when it was closer to the end zone. Florida's offense isn't special, but the young Vols stepped up in crucial situations and made good adjustments. Still, this team is going to go through growing pains on defense this year and someone has to step up and take pressure off Rogers and Bray for this passing game to keep going.

John (Texarkana)

Aight Ed, Do the Hogs have any chance to beat bama? My hopes were diminished this weekend after our second half performance. Although we had a lot of starters out, I still am worried...thanks!

Edward Aschoff
  (12:10 PM)

Arkansas' defense has to play much better than it did against Troy, that's for sure. Stopping Trent Richardson is going to be quite the chore. I think Arkansas will have those players it missed last week back for the game Saturday, so that will help. I think the key is going to be limiting turnovers and forcing the Tide to throw. This will be the biggest test for AJ McCarron this season and if the Hogs can apply pressure it could rattle the young QB. Stopping the run is always key, but it's even more important this weekend because even when Richardson isn't carrying the ball, Eddie Lacy has been very effective. I can't wait for this one.

John (El Dorado, Arkansas)

Alabama D or Arkansas O?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:11 PM)

For now I will go with Alabama D. Arkansas' running game needs to improve. Ronnie Wingo's performance last week was a positive sign, but he needs to be consistent this week as well or the Hogs will be one-dimensional and that's a bad thing when facing a defense like this.

Mark (Nashville)

OK, is the Carolina team really that bad, or are they just now getting going? The D looked much better against a very good Navy team, but wow, our Offense, in particular Garcia, looks like a very average, very average football team. Your answer is?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:14 PM)

I understand Navy is all about running that triple option, but the defense still gave up a ton of rushing yards. This defense has really underperformed this season and I'm surprised, especially after the way the players and coaches talked about all the improvement the defense had made. The offense is still really inconsistent when Marcus Lattimore doesn't have the ball. I'm not sure what the answer is on offense. Garcia needs more focus and needs to stop getting caught in bad situations. Turnovers are a killer. This is a great example of how average the East is this season. The race is wide open at this point.

KatyLSU (Katy, Tx.)

How do you think the LSU offense will do against WVU defense?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:16 PM)

I think it will look pretty much like it has all season -- strong running game, decent passing game with low numbers. LSU revolves around its defense and even with Russell Shepard back this week, I think that will still be the case. Now, with Shepard back that will help the passing game, but don't expect a 300-yard game from Jarrett Lee. That's not how LSU roles and it doesn't need to. I think LSU's offensive line continues its dominance and LSU's stable of running backs puts up nice numbers yet again.

Chris (Dallas)

Is this the biggest game for the Razorbacks and to where the program is as in terms of tier in the SEC?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:19 PM)

It's the biggest game for Bobby Petrino so far. I have heard so much from Arkansas fans about this being a national championship contender and how the Razorbacks don't get any respect compared to LSU and Alabama. Well, this is the weekend where the Hogs can prove they belong in the discussion as a top team in the West. I think this is the most talented team Petrino has had, but a loss to Alabama will be nothing new for this program. If Arkansas is going to contend in the West it has to make a statement in Tuscaloosa this weekend.

Matt (Washington, DC)

Great writeup about Lee v Jefferson. But a question regarding Jefferson, what is the next step in his legal situation? Is there an upcoming event that may give reason for Miles to make a further decision regarding his senior QB (either reinstatement or permanent explusion). Also, what is the likelihood of just sitting Jefferson all year as he still has his redshirt available, and letting him battle it out with Mettenberger next spring?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:24 PM)

The police have wrapped up their investigation into the bar fight and will forward it to the District Attourney's office soon. We'll see where this goes now. Jefferson has played for the three seasons he's been at LSU. If he doesn't play this year, I guess it would be a possibility, but do you really want to keep Mettenberger waiting that much longer?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:24 PM)

The police have wrapped up their investigation into the bar fight and will forward it to the District Attourney's office soon. We'll see where this goes now. Jefferson has played for the three seasons he's been at LSU. If he doesn't play this year, I guess it would be a possibility, but do you really want to keep Mettenberger waiting that much longer?

Keith (Ft Lauderdale)

I know the Gators still have Kentucky this week, but I'm starting to think Florida can shut down Bama's running game. That front 7 looks really tough to run on and I'm not convinced with the Alabama passing game. I think Florida beats Bama (especially after the ""bye" week for UF and Arkansas for the Tide) with special teams late in the game.

Edward Aschoff
  (12:25 PM)

Having some Internet issues, so sorry for the delay in responses ...

Edward Aschoff
  (12:25 PM)

Having some Internet issues, so sorry for the delay in responses ...

Chance (LaGrange, GA)

Yo, Ed! Question for you about philosophy...Bama has played it very close to the vest for 3 weeks. Arky has let it all hang out. Who does that favor come Saturday? The team that finally shows its hand or the team that is used to showing its hand?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:28 PM)

I think Alabama has always known exactly what it's getting from Arkansas. The Hogs weren't going to just go through offenses not displaying most of its offense. That's not Bobby Petrino's style. IT doesn't really matter. Arkansas has a high-powered offense and Alabama knows it.

Edward Aschoff
  (12:30 PM)

Keith: As far as this being a bye week for Florida, it's not. Florida hasn't look spectacular on either side of the ball, so this isn't a team that you can just assume will win at Kentucky. Should they be favored? Yes, but this team is far from being a guarantee. The defense looked good for most of the game last week, but Tennessee can't run the ball. Derek Dooley said as much last week and the Gators stuffed the run, forcing UT to just throw the ball. Alabama has a much different running game. The Tide is smash-mouth and Florida hasn't seen that yet. It's going to be a MAJOR test for this defense line that has gotten a ton of praise thus far.

Marc (Tennessee)

I've yet to hear the reason why Texas isn't interested in the SEC or vice versa. I read that for the SEC the package of taking OK State with OU wasn't worth it. But why isn't Texas interested in the best conference? It makes more sense culturally and geographically

Edward Aschoff
  (12:31 PM)

Do you want Texas and all its baggage in the SEC? I don't think Mike Slive does. Would Texas want to split up the revenue from the LHN?

Scot (Columbia, SC)

Lattimore 4 Heisman, WOW!! Go Cocks

Edward Aschoff
  (12:31 PM)

He has been so much fun to watch. Without him ... who knows where the Gamecocks would be right now. Glad he's on my fantasy team.

mobilematt (SW Florida)

All the talk about Arky and no one really talks about what I believe is a suspect O-line. They better be able to block somebody this Saturday in Tuscaloosa because this defense will expose any weakness.

Edward Aschoff
  (12:33 PM)

That's a great point. Arkansas' offensive line is about to get hit in the mouth, so let's see how it responds. Having three new starters against that front seven is scary, but that's why you come to the SEC. You know you're going to face challenges like this.

Richard (Greensboro, NC)

Looks like no one in the ACC is leaving for the SEC at this point, so who do you see being added to get to 14, and then who else comes in to make it 16 soon after?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:36 PM)

Yeah, the ACC looks like it's only getting bigger at this point. No need to leave now. I still think the SEC goes after a school like Missouri where you can get the St. Louis market, good academics and an AAU member. West Virginia is another school people have been talking about. I like Missouri's chances more than West Virginia's but geographically, WVU makes more sense. Plus, you can get part of the Pittsburgh market, but I still think Missouri is the better option. If you add Missouri do you move Auburn to the East?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:37 PM)

Also, SEC doesn't have to move to 16 teams. The SEC is strong enough that it doesn't need to get to 16 if everyone else does.

Chad (Andalusia, AL)

If Auburn can bounce back do you think they have any chance at competeing for the west?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:38 PM)

That defense has to get cleaned up or the Tigers will have to pump some extra oxygen into the lungs of its offensive players. I think we'll continue to see growing pains out of this team on both sides of the ball for the remainder of the season, but the Tigers will be competitive for sure.

Edward Aschoff
  (12:38 PM)

That defense has to get cleaned up or the Tigers will have to pump some extra oxygen into the lungs of its offensive players. I think we'll continue to see growing pains out of this team on both sides of the ball for the remainder of the season, but the Tigers will be competitive for sure.

Mason (Hogville)

Ed, if Arkansas can get an early lead would it be the death of Bama if they had to take to the air.

Edward Aschoff
  (12:40 PM)

I think Alabama can be efficient in the passing game even if it is down, but don't expect the Tide to put up amazing numbers throw the air. If Arkansas forces Alabama into a throwing game, advantage Arkansas at this point. But it has to get to that first. Richardson and Lacy have the ability to totally wear down a defense.

Mike (Alabama)

Do you see any scenario where Georgia Tech could wind up back in the SEC as part of the realignment that is going on ?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:41 PM)

I don't see Georgia being cool with that at all. Maybe if the Bulldogs join the Big East the Yellow Jackets can get back to the SEC ...

Billy (Gainesville,Fl)

Are you a little worried that if Florida doesn't utilize it's other backs and receivers that this could eventually leave Rainey open to injury?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:42 PM)

I'm not worried, but I think Florida should be. Will Muschamp said he likes giving the ball to Rainey, Demps and Burton, but that can only last so long against mediocre defenses. What happens when they are accounted for against top defenses?

Justin (Charlotte)

South Carolina ran the ball out of the I formation several times against Navy and it worked brilliantly. The first carry for Lattimore was for thirty yards out of the I. I've been screaming this for the past two seasons now that if you give him a 5-7 yard headstart he will be even better. Do you think Spurrier should realize that he is a running offense and do what makes the most sense?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:44 PM)

I'm all for giving Lattimore more touches, but you can't wear this guy down too early. He's only a sophomore and the Gamecocks need to find other weapons in and out of the backfield to help him. The passing game has to get more consistency. This team just isn't living up to expectations right now, but it is 3-0 and that's what really matters to this point.

Jeff F. (Baton Rouge, LA)

Ole Miss looked pathetic this weekend. Do you think Nutt can survive another 4-8 type of year?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:46 PM)

Honestly, I don't. Back-to-back losing season like that would probably be enough to send he and his staff packing. But it's sad that it could come down to that after having back-to-back Cotton Bowl victories. Is Ole Miss really that high on the SEC pecking order right now that a coach struggles for two years after having two straight seasons with big postseason wins and might be sent packing?

David (GHS)

3 games into the season, who is sitting on the top of your heisman ballot?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:48 PM)

Nationally: Andrew Luck, Marcus Lattimore, Kellen Moore, Robert Griffin III, Trent Richardson. SEC: Lattimore, Richardson, Chris Rainey, Michael Dyer, Tyler Bray

b (h, tx)

vandy seems to have success against garcia and their defense as a whole has stepped it up a notch. with that said, how much to do you think vandy has to score to beat sc on saturday?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:51 PM)

Vandy has 10 interceptions and has recovered two fumbles. That leads the SEC in takeaways. The Commodores also lead in sacks with eight. This defense is all about forcing mistakes and South Carolina is prone to make them. That's not good. Plus, I think South Carolina is lacking some o the confidence it entered the season with after struggling on defense through the first three weeks. Vandy has all the confidence in the world and is really playing with nothing to lose. James Franklin has his squad playing loose and having fun out there. I think South Carolina is on upset watch this weekend. I think Vandy has to get into the mid-20s to win this weekend.

John (SSI, GA)

Ole Miss or Georgia? Who needs it worse and why?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:53 PM)

Wow. I'm actually stumped on this one. Maybe Georgia because the Bulldogs are expected to win, but another loss for Ole Miss will send the Grove into a frenzy.

Hayes ((Florida))

Joker is terrible. Randy Sanders needs to go. Any chance of a new coach for next year? I wouldn't mind keeping Joker as an OC and recruiter but as a head coach, no way.

Edward Aschoff
  (12:54 PM)

He is taking some heat after that loss to Louisville at home. Kentucky's offensive line was demolished in the game. Kentucky's bowl hopes are starting to look a little fuzzy at the moment, especially with how well Vanderbilt is playing. A lot of improvement needs to be made on the offensive side of the ball going forward or Phillips could start feeling even more heat.

Mike (Magnolia Arkansas )

All the talk about Alabama Defense has made me wonder, Who have they played that has a potent offense? Penn State sure didn't have much. DOn't you think Alabama's defense will be tested more than Arknasas?

Edward Aschoff
  (12:57 PM)

Of course Alabama will be tested even more. This is the best offense Alabama will face all season. Alabama has done what it's needed to do through three weeks. It has a great defense, but the Hogs provide quite the challenge.

Jeremy (Iowa)

What is your opinion on having 16-team super conferences? I think it's a stupid idea. It will cause a even bigger distance between midmajors and the Big Boys. Might as well make a new subdivision for D1.

Edward Aschoff
  (12:59 PM)

I don't like them. Fourteen isn't bad, I just don't want super conferences to destroy traditional college football rivalries and I think they will. The more teams you have, the less teams will face each other on a more consistent basis in opposite divisions. I don't want the LSU-Florida rivalry to die or the Alabama-Tennessee to be played every five or so years. I think you'd see both of those scenarios with a 16-team conference.

Edward Aschoff
  (1:01 PM)

OK, guys gotta run over to Cover it Live. Great chat today. Lots of people are fired up about Alabama-Arkansas as you should be. It'll be a great one. Talk to you guys next week or I'll see you over at Cover it Live.