Shreveport…honoring their dead
There are very few things more disheartening among SEC than the prospects of spending the bowl season at the Independence Bowl in Shreveport, Louisiana . But a mediocre season and an 8th place finish in the toughest conferences in the land will get you some nice parting gifts and an all expenses paid trip to the Port City. Teams and fans alike are sure to enjoy the oppressive heat, street violence, and…hey look, casinos! But this year it means even more as the shamefully proud Indy Bowl is cutting ties with both the SEC and Big 12, instead choosing to disappoint a whole new batch of fans from the ACC and Mountain West in the coming years. So, its time to get sentimental people! Its the last run in Shreveport for the SEC, so lets make it count! Time to cash in those free Jack Binion’s Horseshoe buffet vouchers before its too late! And to commemorate this last year, every week FOTP will be taking a look at which SEC teams have the best chance of going bowling in East Texas the third most glamorous city in the Bayou State.
1. Kentucky (4-3 (1-3). A pivotal weekend for the Cats as they welcome the hard luck Mississippi State Bulldogs into Lexington, winner has the inside track to a bowl, loser has an uphill climb. Kentucky fans will have to pull themselves away from holding prayer vigils outside of John Wall’s dorm room long enough to give the football Cats some sort of home field advantage against State. With E. Kentucky and Vandy still left on the schedule, a win versus State gives UK fans hope of a visit to the “Bridge of Activities”*.
2. Auburn (5-3) (2-3). From out of the Port City picture altogether to right in the hunt in one week, that’s what 3 straight loses and the look of complete vincibility will get you. The curtain has been pulled back from the Auburn offense to reveal Brandon Cox Chris Todd (same guy, really) to be the indecisive pick throwing machine we all suspected him of being. Auburn’s lack of depth has caught up with them and it gets no easier the rest of the way out with games versus Ole Miss, Georgia, and Bama left on the schedule, with the only sure win being a gimmie against the Purple Paladins of Furman.
3. Arkansas (3-4) (1-4) Losers of the “Elimination from having to go to the Indy Bowl” game in Oxford this past weekend, the Hogs have to regroup, as they have a very favorable schedule down the stretch. Eastern Michigan comes to Fayetteville this weekend as do South Carolina, Troy, and Mississippi State. Win 3 of those 4 and a bowl birth is almost a lock, surprise someone and win all 4, and give LSU a run for their money in Baton Rouge, and Razorback fans could pack up their wagons with alot of patience and head down the excruciating I-71 two lane drive from hell into Shreveport.
4. Tennessee (3-4) (1-3) Moral victories are good for, well, morale, but they aren’t going to get you any closer to the glitz and glamour that Larry Flynt’s Hustler Club has to offer ( I dare you to click on it!) around Christmas time. Tennessee was a Terrance Cody hambone away from a W last week, but thankfully the schedule lets up down the stretch. UT has South Carolina, Memphis, Vandy, and Kentucky, as well as the “Welcome Home Ed Orgeron Ceremonies presented by Red Bull” in Oxford left on the schedule. Winnable games all, but should the pendulum swing the other way we’ll all miss out on the inevitable Coach O arrest a Stray Cats.
5. Mississippi State (3-5) (1-3) If State pulls off those upsets against LSU and Florida then this is a much different discussion, but as it stands, State has an uphill battle to get bowl eligible and eventually lose all their per diem money at a Port City casino’s Keno game. The Bulldogs go to Bama , Arkansas, and this weekend, Kentucky. A win over the Cats would do wonders, and finally finishing off one of those illusive upsets may set up an all or nothing finale against the Rebels in Starkville Thanksgiving weekend.
Out of the Poll this Week: Ole Miss
Others Receiving Votes: Georgia, Vanderbilt, STD’s, Terry Bradshaw
*TM Snyder News Network (2003)