(1) Florida 23 Arkansas 20
It was supposed to be easy when you looked at this game at the beginning of the season, but the Hogs had other plans. They were the first team to score first on the Gators this year. They sacked AT&Tebow six times and forced four Florida turnovers. For the first time in awhile a team made the Gators look normal. As a matter of fact they led 10-3 at the half on the strength of their defense and some good early running by Broderick Green. He had a 19-yard touchdown run called back for holding but later atoned for it by punching it in from the one to make it 7-0. The score was made possible when Tebow was sacked and fumbled the ball back to the Hogs. In the second half the Gators took the lead when Tebow hit Deonte Thompson on a 77-yard strike to make it 13-10. It was the longest scoring pass of his career. This came after Arkansas kicker Alex Tejada missed his first of two field goals that would prove to be the difference. So after three hard fought quarters the game turned in to an offensive one. Arkansas QB Ryan Mallet came out in the fourth and started the scoring tossing a 75-yarder to Greg Childs. The score did was not official until a review of the play showed that Childs recovered a loose ball in the end zone. It put the Hogs back up 20-13 and it looked like Florida may go down on this day. On the next possession they went right down the field with the help of some penalties and tied it at 20. Arkansas got another shot to take the lead when Mallett moved them far enough to set up a Tejada 38-yard attempt. The kick sailed wide left and the Gators took over at the 31. The winning drive was typical Tebow as he drove his team down the field. He hit Riley Cooper a couple of times and ran the ball five times to set up the game winning 27-yard filed goal from Caleb Sturgis. The game told a story for both teams. For Florida it showed that they could have an off day. That you can prepare for them and possibly beat them in this derby for the national championship. It showed that maybe the Gators depend too much on Tebow as he accounted for 324 of his teams 391 yards of offense. They will have to take a closer look at who else can help in the stretch run. To win the BCS title you will need more than one player on your team to do it all. Arkansas will not find comfort in losing the game but found out a few things. Mallett looks everything like they guy they envisioned to lead their team back in the SEC. He has poise and the arm and is only getting better. The young defense showed what it could do against top-tier teams, as they held their own. So if you thought that maybe the SEC might slip up some time soon you were wrong. This conference is stronger than ever and with the new recruits waiting in the wing it will just get stronger.
Kentucky 21 Auburn 14
It had been forever since the Wildcats beat the Tigers. It was way back in 1966 to be precise and they did it in comeback fashion. Auburn had come in with this offense that was producing so well, it was assumed that Kentucky would have problems with it. What they did was make it look like another ordinary offense as quarterback Chris Todd had trouble connecting with his receivers all game long. It all started out fine for the Tigers when they blocked a 38-yard field goal attempt and ran it back 69 yards for a 7-0 lead. Kentucky countered with a four-yard run by quarterback Morgan Newton to tie it. Newton had a miserable day, in place of the injured Mark Hartline, going 5-13 for 39 yards but was able to count on his running game to carry the team to victory. Auburn took the lead back on a Ben Tate one-yard run to close the first half. Tate had a great day running for 132 yards on 31 carries. It was his fifth 100-yard game of the season. Yet the Tigers would not score in a second half that belonged to Kentucky. The third quarter was scoreless setting up an exciting fourth. Will Fidler got some time at quarterback for Kentucky and had a 4-yard score late in the fourth to tie the score at 14 with just over six minutes left. He was also 4-9 for 36 yards and will compete for the starting job this week. So the stage was set when the Tigers got the ball again and Randall Cobb (19-126) had a sweet run for 61 yards and then two plays later scored to winning touchdown. Auburn started this season with so much hope only to lose key games that will hurt them at years end. Kentucky got a big win but must deal with the reality that they need to choose a QB and hope to make the right choice.
Alabama 20 South Carolina 6
It was the eve of the BCS polls and the Tide wanted to make a statement to the rest of the football world. It could be a number one team if the pollsters just gave them a chance. Well it worked and it didn’t work you could say. By Sunday night they would be No. 2 in the BCS and No. 1 in the AP. It was not one of their best outings of the year because they were up against the best defense they had faced all year long. Quarterback Greg McElroy was not on so he handed the ball off the Mark Ingram 24 times and all Ingram did was rush for a career best 246 yards and a touchdown with 4:54 left in the game for the win. McElroy finished 10-20 for a mere 92 yards and two picks. The Tide had three chances in the red-zone but could only score once. They had as many turnovers in this game as they had all year with four. They got help from a strong defensive showing as the Tide had five sacks and nine tackles for loss. They have not given up a touchdown in two games now. South Carolina had a few chances to put the ball in the end zone but came up short. McElroy’s receivers missed several passes in the end zone that could have turned the game the other way. So now the Tide host Tennessee next week and look to get a hold onto the top ranking in the BCS if possible.
Ole Miss 48 UAB 13
It wasn’t even this close as Jevon Snead threw for 240 yards and three touchdowns. They also added 163 rushing yards to finish with just over 500 yards of offense as Ole Miss takes advantage of a lesser opponent to get back into the win column.
Georgia 34 Vanderbilt 10
The Bulldogs ended a two game skid while extending Vanderbilt’s losing streak to three. The story of the game was field position as Vandy found itself with horrible position while giving the Dawgz good field position all day. Head coach Bobby Johnson expressed his disappointment with special teams play and the offensive line’s inability to give QB Larry Smith time to throw. The Dawgz needed this one after the whipping they took last week against Tennessee.