In his weekly recruiting column, Dudley E. Dawson chats with Florida prep wideout Marquel Wade (5-11…
SEC Power Predictions
YRATINGS.COM POWER RANKINGS thru Week #9
1. (122.1) ALABAMA - dropped 2.3 points but holding on to the top by a thread.
2. (122.0) FLORIDA - dropped 2.1 points to continue the downward slide.
3. (112.2) TENNESSEE - even after a loss the ratings respect the effort in tough games.
4. (111.3) OLE MISS - the first to to show an improvement in the ratings +0.7 points.
5. (110.5) LSU - moved up a spot past AU after the win +1.9 points.
6. (106.4) AUBURN - dropped 3.3 points - ouch - this team needs something good to happen.
7. (104.4) ARKANSAS - dropped 2.7 points after another the loss to Ole Miss.
8. (104.1) KENTUCKY - plus 1.8, this team is climbing toward the top side.
9. (103.6) SO.CAROLINA - dropped 0.4 due to the close victory over Vandy.
10. (101.6) GEORGIA - no play, no movement.
11. (99.7) MISS STATE - plus 1.0 points after a valiant effort at home versus Florida. 12. (91.4) VANDERBILT - plus 1.1 points, but still on bottom.
Now let's see how the first four weeks ratings compare to the ratings over the last four weeks. The following lists each team with their ranking for weeks 1-4 and their rankings weeks 5-8:
Alabama - 2nd - 1st
Ole Miss - 6th - 2nd
Florida - 1st - 3rd
Arkansas - 12th - 4th
Tennessee - 4th - 5th
LSU - 6th - 5th
Kentucky - 7th - 7th
Miss. State - 10th - 8th
So. Carolina - 7th - 9th
Georgia - 9th - 10th
Auburn - 3rd - 11th
Vandy - 11th - 12th
The big movers in the rankings are Ole Miss and Arkansas while Auburn is the biggest loser dropping 9 places from the first 4 weeks to the last 4 weeks.
Alabama is consistent while Florida slipped a little.
Last week the picks went 5-1 (83%) again (Auburn fooled the numbers for the third time in a row). Since week 4 the picks are 27-7 (79%). Perfection is the goal, let's see how we do this week:
SEC - WEEK #9 POWER PREDICTIONS:
#19 OLE MISS (5-2, 2-2) AT #36 AUBURN (5-3, 2-3)
Ole Miss will win because..#3 pass efficiency defense, #14 pass defense (166.9 yds/game), #9 scoring defense (13.6 pts/game), #11 in sacks (3.0 sacks/game), Auburn's #78 scoring defense (26.9 pts/game) and all-around Dexter McCluster.
Auburn will win because..#7 rushing offense (230.4 yds/game), #19 total offense (430.9 yds/game), #32 pass efficiency defense (111.3 yds/game) and Ben Tate's rushing game (115.4 yds/game).
A three game losing streak, a struggling offense and too many mental mistakes are the recipe for self-destruction. Auburn has it's finger on the trigger. Ole Miss knows the feeling from the early season woes, but the Rebels are headed in the opposite direction. Auburn will put up a fight, but there may not be enough fight left in them.
PREDICTION: OLE MISS BY 5 POINTS
#113 EASTERN MICHIGAN (0-7, 0-4) AT #39 ARKANSAS (3-4, 1-4)
Eastern Michigan will win because..#1 pass defense (124.4 yds/game), #47 pass efficiency defense and Chris May #8 in the nation in interceptions.
Arkansas will win because..#1 ranked Yratings schedule, #13 passing offense (295.6 yds/game), #4 kickoff returns (28.4 yds/kick), #4 turnover margin (+1.43) and D Johnson's kick returns with Michael Smith's ground game.
Arkansas will do it's share of passing, but the weakness of Eastern's rushing defense will allow the Hogs to run wild all over the field. The play-action pass game will hit on some big plays. Way too much Arkansas in this one.
PREDICTION: ARKANSAS BY 24 POINTS
#22 GEORGIA TECH (7-1, 5-1) AT #94 VANDERBILT (2-6, 0-5)
Georgia Tech will win because..#2 rushing offense (291.6 yds/game), #2 punt returns (19.9 yds/game), #20 scoring offense (32.6 pts/game), Jerrad Tarrant #1 punt returner in the nation (19.9 yds/game) and the combo game of Josh Nesbitt.
Vandy will win because..#7 pass defense (155.9 yds/game), #38 rushing offense (174.8 yds/game), #23 scoring defense (17.8 pts/game) and always all-purpose Warren Norman.
Georgia Tech is hot, hot, hot and Vanderbilt is not, not, not. Vandy will need to tighten up it's rush defense to slow down Tech's unique running game. Home field may help. but probably not.
PREDICTION: GEORGIA TECH BY 19 POINTS
#118 TULANE (2-5, 0-4) AT #21 L.S.U. (6-1, 4-1)
Tulane will win because..#54 pass defense (212.0 yds/game), Jeremy Williams #18 in receiving yards (94.6 yds/game) and #25 reception a game (6.3). LSU will win because..Tulane's #114 scoring defense (36.7 pts/game), #7 turnover margin (1.3), #12 scoring defense (13.9 pts/game), Jordan Jefferson if he's healthy.
LSU will use this game as a tune up, but must be careful to not get caught looking ahead. They definitely do not want to get caught in a trap game which I don't think they will.
PREDICTION: LSU BY 37 POINTS
#57 GEORGIA (4-3, 3-2) AT #4 FLORIDA (7-0, 5-0)
Georgia will win because..#1 in net punting (44.1 yds/game), #10 in sacks allowed (.86/game), #46 passing offense (226.7 yds/game), the SEC's #1 receiver A.J. Green and #1 punter Drew Butler.
Florida will win because..#1 pass efficiency (86.8 yds/game), #1 total defense (229.6 yds/game), #2 scoring defense (10.1 pts/game), #9 scoring defense (35.3 pts/game) and Tim Tebow's pass efficiency defense.
This rivalry game doesn't look at win-loss records, so throw out the accomplishments and disappoints of the season. The ratings like a big Florida victory, but the Gators have struggled lately in the scoring column. Georgia's season hasn't went as planned, but it can make a turn for the right direction with a big upset. This one will be fun too watch.
PREDICTION: FLORIDA BY 20 POINTS
#64 MISSISSIPPI STATE (3-5, 1-3) AT #41 KENTUCKY (4-3, 1-3)
Miss. State will win because..#18 rushing offense (203.1 yds/game), #20 kickoff returns (24.7 yds/kick), #45 pass efficiency defense and Anthony Dixon #15 rushing (107.0 yds/game).
Kentucky will win because..#26 rushing offense (186.3 yds/game), #22 pass defense (178.1 yds/game), #23 punt returns (13.4 yds/kick), all-everything Randall Cobb and his sidekick Derrick Locke.
Both of these teams love to run the ball complimented with an occasional pass, so this game will come down to which running back will find the hot hand. Kentucky might have a slight edge with the dual combination of Locke and Cobb. In a low scoring game Cats beat Dogs.
PREDICTION: KENTUCKY BY 4 POINTS
#43 SOUTH CAROLINA (6-2, 3-2) AT #17 TENNESSEE
South Carolina will win because..#14 total defense (288.9 yds/game), #3 pass defense (141.3 yds/game), #21 scoring defense (17.5 pts/game) and Stephen Garcia if he's hot.
Tennessee will win because..#6 pass defense (155.9 yds/game), #10 total defense (269.7 yds/game), #25 scoring defense (18.4 pts/game) and Montario Hardesty on the ground.
Another rivalry game, Steve Spurrier verus the Vols, makes predicting difficult. Neyland Stadium is a tough place to play for any visiting team, and the ratings think it is very tough on the Gamecocks. If Crompton still has his groove, and the Vol defense has recovered from the battle last week, they will win. If South Carolina's defense can confuse and attack it may be a different story.
PREDICTION: TENNESSEE BY 9 POINTS
Don't forget to visit YRatings.com to see all the NCAA teams' ratings.