Vanderbilt moves back ahead of their in-state rivals this week after a solid showing in Lexington. Derek Mason and company will be disappointed they couldn’t find a way to get past Kentucky, but losing to the Wildcats by a single score is nothing to be ashamed of. It was the Commodores’ inability to run the football that cost them the chance to win this game. Kentucky has a very physical front, and Vanderbilt’s offensive line simply couldn’t handle it. This team isn’t going to win many games where they can only grind out 68 yards on 31 carries.
The Rebels hung in against Auburn for a half until 21 third-quarter points for the Tigers put the game out of reach. It was a decent showing for Ole Miss, but nothing special. Matt Luke continues to put a ton of pressure on Jordan Ta’amu every week. He threw the ball 46 times and carried it 19 times in this one. The talented signal caller is going to spend a lot of time in ice baths this week. Ultimately, Ole Miss just doesn’t have enough talent on offense to light up a defense like Auburn.
Missouri stepped out of conference action this week with a home game against Memphis. This was billed as a football game, but it looked much more like a track meet. Credit the SEC’s version of the Tigers for winning the game comfortably. As you might expect, Drew Lock had a big game. He finished the day with 350 yards passing and four touchdowns. No NFL scouts are going to give him a ton of credit for ripping up Memphis’ defense, but it will help make his numbers look better at the end of the year. In the end, we didn’t learn anything about Lock or his team on Saturday, but they got the job done.
The bye came at a good time for the Gamecocks. They’re reeling a little bit after back-to-back close losses in the SEC. Having some time to rest and recuperate before hosting Tennessee next week was a good thing for Will Muschamp’s team. With that being said, beating the Volunteers next week is a must-win. If South Carolina loses to Tennessee, things are going to get ugly in Columbia. Fortunately for Muschamp, he’s never lost to Tennessee as a head coach.