After a week one where the SEC finished 12-2 with Alabama, Tennessee, and South Carolina scoring big wins over ACC opponents, week two wasn’t as kind to some conference teams.
Saturday featured some of the top match ups of the second Saturday of college football, with Auburn traveling to Death Valley to take on Clemson, Georgia facing Notre Dame in South Bend, and Arkansas playing host to TCU in a Big 12-SEC showdown. Find out how the the thirteen teams performed in week two:
Eastern Kentucky 16 Kentucky 27:
Kentucky, who has been regarded by many as a serious contender in the SEC East this season survived a scare from FCS foe Eastern Kentucky on Saturday. The Wildcats trailed 10-13 at the half before scoring 17 in the second half to pull away at the end. Kentucky heads to Columbia next week for a big match up with South Carolina.
UT-Martin 23 Ole Miss 45:
The Rebels had to use a second half surge after trailing 16-10 in the 2nd quarter to the FCS Skyhawks out of Martin, Tennessee. Ole Miss, who struggled early last week against South Alabama at home were still able to use their offense behind QB Shea Patterson to pull ahead in the second half and get to 2-0. Ole Miss will head out west next Saturday to take on California in an SEC-Pac 12 match up.
Fresno State 10 Alabama 41:
Not much to say here. Alabama is 2-0 after a typical dominating win in Tuscaloosa which has become a staple in the Saban era. The Crimson Tide will face Colorado State at home next week. Expect Alabama to be 3-0 before they begin SEC play with Vanderbilt in a few weeks.
TCU 28 Arkansas 7:
Bret Bielema’s seat may be on fire in Fayetteville as the Razorbacks suffer yet another frustrating loss to a Big 12 team. This game looked promising early, as both teams were deadlocked at 7 for nearly two quarters. Unfortunately for Arkansas, they never managed to score again. TCU was able to pull ahead in the fourth quarter, capitalizing on Arkansas turnovers late to get the 28-7 win on the road. Arkansas will begin league play in Dallas next week versus rival Texas A&M.
Nicholls State 14 Texas A&M 24:
Speaking of hot seats, none is hotter than Kevin Sumlin’s seat in College Station. The Aggies, who blew a 34 point lead in the second half in a loss versus UCLA last week, the last thing they needed was a lackluster performance in their home opener versus an FCS team. Like Kentucky, Texas A&M wasn’t able to put Nicholls State away until the 4th quarter to grind out the 10 point win. They desperately need to open SEC play with win as they face Arkansas in Dallas next Saturday.
Indiana State 7 Tennessee 42:
After a double overtime nail biting win in Atlanta over Georgia Tech in week one, Tennessee cruised in their home opener over FCS’ Indiana State. The Vols set the tone early when freshman Ty Chandler took the opening kickoff 90 yards to put Tennessee ahead 7-0. Like many expected, a lot of players who didn’t play in week one managed to see the field by the second half. The game allowed Tennessee to work out whatever kinks they had in week one, and as a tune up before they travel to Gainesville to take on Florida in a huge game to open conference play.
Alabama A&M 0 Vanderbilt 42:
In a day that saw a couple big name SEC teams struggle with the FCS, it was Vanderbilt who was able to dominate their opponent for four quarters. The Commodores scored 42 unanswered, while shutting down the Bulldogs defensively in the win. Vanderbilt starts their 2017 campaign 2-0 as they draw Kansas State in Nashville in week three.
South Carolina 31 Missouri 10:
Will Muschamp’s Gamecocks are off to a hot start after beating NC State 35-28 in week one and Missouri on the road yesterday. Some experts went as far to say on Sunday that South Carolina should be considered a serious challenger in the SEC East. It may be hard to look to much into the Gamecocks’ 2-0 start considering that NC State beat Marshall by 3 at home yesterday and Missouri gave 43 to Missouri State last week, but they’ll be able to continue their march to Atlanta next week against Kentucky at home.
Auburn 6 Clemson 14:
Last week, the SEC went 3-0 against the ACC quelling a few detesters of the SEC. Auburn had a chance to make it 4-0 through the first two weeks by taking on the defending national champions on their home turf. Despite a solid defensive effort by the Tigers, it was the home standing Clemson Tigers that emerged victorious. Auburn entered 2017 with sky high expectations and a loss on the road to #3 team in the nation isn’t going to hurt them. However, after two of sub par performances on offense Auburn may be looking for answers before they kickoff SEC play at Missouri in a few weeks. Auburn plays Mercer next week.
Louisiana Tech 21 Mississippi State 57:
Mississippi State continued to roll on offense in week two with a convincing win on the road. The real test for Dan Mullen’s squad is coming to Starkville next Saturday in the form of 12th ranked LSU.
Chattanooga 10 LSU 45:
LSU continued their dominating performance in their home opener versus Chattanooga. The defense was able to shut down the overmatched Mocs in the 35 point win. The Tigers will look to continue that dominance as they travel to Starkville to face Mississippi State in week three.
Georgia 20 Notre Dame 19:
Georgia made their case that they will be legitimate force in the SEC with a 20-19 win in South Bend over #24 Notre Dame. It was a back and forth affair for four quarters, but it was the Bulldogs, who started true freshman Jake Fromm in place of the injured Jacob Eason, who scored a late field goal to leave Notre Dame Stadium with the win. Georgia will look to start 3-0 when they play Samford in Athens next Saturday.
*Florida did not play due to Hurricane Irma. They will host #25 Tennessee in the Swamp next Saturday on CBS.