The SEC Would Make A Great Soap Opera This Year
By Larry Burton
What a year this has been. The year of improbable. The year of the upset. The year of twists and turns. The penthouse to outhouse and the other way around for other teams. Personalities came into play, lives are being turned inside out by the press and careers are being talked about being eliminated while others are talked about changing venues. There’s been home violence, sex, drugs and crippling injuries. But on the other hand, there have been Cinderella stories, stories of compassion and great sportsmanship.
The story started with all the SEC media experts saying South Carolina would win the East and Alabama would win the West and most likely, a national championship. Then South Carolina took an immediate nosedive and looked like one of the worst teams in the SEC and Texas A&M, who was thought to be in rebuilding mode, looked like the team to beat and a new star was born, Kenny “The Thrill” Hill.
Meanwhile Alabama took off as expected breezing through the early schedule with a new quarterback that looked like a million dollars until they met Ole Miss and Arkansas, fell in one and almost in another and their quarterback now looked like a bounced check.
But Texas A&M who looked like the new wonder kids now looked like Orphans.
So with all these teams that looked good early and nose dived, who became the Cinderellas?
Who would have thought that the epicenter of not just the SEC, but the college football world, would run through the state of Mississippi? The answer? No one. But now both teams from Mississippi from Mississippi are looking like world beaters. But then, Ole Miss fell not once, but twice and only the Bulldogs stood undefeated, but then their worst games are coming up soon. Will they stand tall or fall?
Then there was Auburn, who like Alabama, started off with a flash, then had an apparent flush of fortunes, only to rise again.
And though Georgia looked to rule the East with no problem, even after losing their game with South Carolina as usual, but Florida, a team with no hope of beating the Bulldogs, jumped up and did just that. That meant that Georgia will settle for just another “good season” as the door opened up for Missouri, who looked to be a flawed and fallen team earlier on.
Then there were the personal issues. Did Georgia’s star running back Gurley take money for signing autographs? How many games will he sit out and how sad that it cost him a Heisman Trophy for doing it. Then there is the coach that Florida couldn’t wait to fire, he was done, fans wanted him gone now, but they kept him for at least one more week and he beats their biggest foe in fine fashion and now they may be rethinking running him off.
Then there are the Hogs. The worst team in the West that could oh so easily be one of the best. They play all the big boys oh so well, only to come oh so close and then ultimately fail. Will the Hogs ever get over these moral victories and claim a win? Every week is a cliff hanging game with lots of sympathy at the end. Are they destined to play that role all season or will there finally be a surprise ending?
All we needed was a head coach getting caught in an affair with another coach’s fiancee after a motorcycle wreck, but heck, that’s already been done.
Ah and as the first half of this season’s episodes are now in the books, what will the second half bring?
Will LSU continue to be a spoiler and ruin Alabama’s chances? Will the Egg Bowl or the Iron Bowl decide the West? Who will be fired, who will be hired and who will win awards while others sustain more injuries?
One thing is for sure, we won’t know the twists and turns until they happen and they’re sure to either entertain or drive you insane. And none of us will be able to turn away, the story is just that good this year.
Larry has been published in almost every media outlet for college sports and now primarily writes here for Touchdown Alabama. Follow Larry on Twitter for inside thoughts and game time comments at https://twitter.com/LBSportswriter