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Who to root for if you're a Tennessee Volunteer football fan: week two

Well this feature has become quite a bit more interesting now that the Vols might actually contend for a national championship.  So let's take a look at the competition in the hunt for the BCS.

The SEC Pecking Order:

  • Tennessee v. Air Force.  Duh.

  • Vanderbilt at Alabama.  This one's tough.  I'm not sure that it matters one way or the other.  On rivalry alone, you pull for the Commodores and the upset.  On the other hand, if you'd rather see Alabama than either Auburn or LSU in the SEC title game, you'd root for the Tide.  If you can stomach the idea, that is.

  • Auburn at Mississippi State.  On the same theme, an upset here for Croom and company would increase the odds that the SEC West title goes to someone other than LSU or Auburn.

  • Georgia at South Carolina.
  •  Another tough one.  Would love to get a leg up on Georgia in the hunt for the East crown, but don't want to get behind Spurrier.  Toss up.  As in your cookies, because you really can't in good conscience root for either.

Rooting for the conference:

You'll want to root for the SEC in the following games:

  • Arkansas at Utah State.

  • LSU at Arizona.

  • Ole Miss at Missouri.

National games of interest (former and future opponents and teams ahead or close behind in the polls):

  • Ohio State at Texas.
  • This one's tough, too.  Neither team should be penalized much for losing this game, but as much as it pains me to say so, I think that for Tennessee's sake, you need to root for Ohio State.  Texas' schedule is, I believe, more favorable, so if they don't lose this week, they're much more likely to run the table than would be Ohio State, who still has Penn State, Iowa, and Michigan remaining on the schedule.

  • Penn State at Notre Dame.  A Penn State victory in this game would do more damage to the Irish than it would to help the Nittany Lions.

  • Minnesota at California.  For the Vols' win over Cal to look good in retrospect, you'll want to root for Cal in all of their future games.

  • Virginia Tech at North Carolina.

  • Miami at Florida A&M.

  • Louisville at Temple.

  • Syracuse v. Iowa.

  • West Virginia at Eastern Washington.

  • Michigan v. Central Michigan.

  • Oklahoma v. Washington.

  • Oregon at Fresno State.