After this wild weekend of SEC football, we saw some contenders struggle and the pretenders overachieve. There are now four undefeated teams left in the SEC. Let’s take a look at where they fall in the power rankings for Week 5:
14. Vanderbilt (BYE)
I could have put Missouri at 14, but they played Georgia tough for three quarters. The Commodores have a game against those same Bulldogs in Week 6. Yikes.
13. Missouri (Lost to #1 Georgia 26-22)
Missouri lost to Georgia in a closely contested game in Columbia. The Tigers had a 13-0 lead and it looked like Georgia was in trouble, though only for a short while. Missouri maintained a 10 point lead well into the second half, but the Bulldogs put together two scoring drives that set the final margin. Kicker Harrison Mevis was the high scorer in the game for Missouri, with five field goals on the day.
12. Auburn (Lost to LSU 21-17)
The Tigers were NOT the greater of the two Tigers on Saturday. The Auburn Tigers lost to LSU on the Plains, blowing a 17-0 lead. Robby Ashford had a good day passing, with 337 yards and 2 touchdowns, along with one interception, for Auburn. Tank Bigsby only had 45 yards on 12 carries and the LSU defense forced a fumble that was returned for a touchdown. The Auburn Tigers now sit at 3-2 on the year.
11. South Carolina (Won against South Carolina State 50-10)
Playing ahead of a possible Hurricane Ian landfall on the South Carolina coast, Shane Beamer’s team manhandled an FCS opponent, as expected. Spencer Rattler did not look good, throwing for only 212 yards, with two touchdowns and two interceptions, against a weak FCS defense. Rattler did add one rushing touchdown on the day. Luke Doty saw action in mop up duty, completing three passes for seven yards. Marshawn Lloyd had 80 yards and one touchdown for the Gamecocks.
10. Florida (Won against Eastern Washington 52-17)
Anthony Richardson was mediocre in his performance against Eastern Washington, throwing for 240 yards and two touchdowns, with one interception. He also added 45 yards on one rush. Jalen Kitna came on in relief and had 152 yards and one touchdown for the Gators. Ricky Pearsall was the leading rusher for Florida, with 76 yards and a touchdown. Trevor Etienne struggled only gaining 22 yards on four carries.
9. Texas A&M (Lost to Mississippi State)
The Aggies could not keep possession of the football and Mississippi State took advantage. Devon Achane fumbled in the red zone and Haynes King, in relief of an injured Max Johnson, threw two interceptions. The Aggies were able to move the ball, but turnovers and a blocked field goal allowed the Bulldogs to win comfortably. Jumbo Fisher now has the same record as Kevin Sumlin at the same point in their careers at A&M. Fisher’s seat may be warmer than he realizes.
8. Arkansas (Lost to #2 Alabama A&M 49-26)
The Razorbacks looked like they were still celebrating their win over Texas A&M, allowing Alabama to jump on them early and only threatening the Crimson Tide in the third quarter. Down 28-0 in the second quarter, Arkansas finally scored when K.J. Jefferson found Ketron Jackson on a six yard touchdown pass. After cutting the lead to 28-23, the Razorbacks allowed three fourth quarter scores, setting the final margin of victory.
7. LSU (Won against LSU)
The Louisiana State University Tigers came back from a 17-0 deficit to win the battle of the Tigers down on the Plains. The game winning touchdown came as John Emery Jr. rushed 20 yards to give LSU the lead and the win. Quarterback Jayden Daniels was unimpressive, completing only eight passes for 80 yards. Garrett Nussmeier came in and ran out the clock, as Brian Kelly won his fourth straight game with the Tigers.
6. Mississippi State (Won against #17 Texas A&M 42-24)
Bulldog quarterback Will Rogers had an impressive day against the Aggies, completing 31 passes for 329 yards and three touchdowns against the Aggies. Rogers completed passes to eight different receivers, with Rara Thomas leading the way with five catches for 134 yards and a touchdown. Dillon Johnson had 68 yards rushing and a touchdown for Mississippi State. The Bulldog defense was key, forcing four turnovers and blocking a field goal.
5. Kentucky (Lost to #14 Ole Miss 22-19)
Kentucky’s struggles against SEC West teams on the road once again reared its ugly head. In a game that included multiple special teams miscues in the kicking game, the Wildcats had an impressive kick return game from freshman Barion Brown. Brown had three kickoff returns for 164 yards and leads the nation in that category. Quarterback Will Levis did not throw an interception, but lost two fumbles, the second of which cost the Wildcats the game. The returning Christopher Rodriguez was a boon to the struggling Wildcats running game, gaining 72 yards and a touchdown in his first game this season.
4. Ole Miss (Won against #7 Kentucky 22-19)
The Rebels looked like a team that was lucky to get the win against the Wildcats. The Rebels were gifted two points via a safety, after a questionable call on a ball spotted on the 1 yard line after a Rebel punt. Quarterback Jaxson Dart was mediocre, but opportunistic, throwing for just 213 yards, with one interception. However, several of his throws led to first downs. Freshman Quinshon Judkins was impressive, rushing for 106 yards and a touchdown, for the Rebels.
3. Tennessee (BYE)
Tennessee joined fellow Volunteer State school Vanderbilt on the bye week. The Vols return to action next week against the LSU Tigers.
2. UGA (Won against Missouri 26-22)
Georgia again looked pedestrian, struggling to beat a vastly overmatched team in Columbia, Missouri. The Tigers led for much of the game, but Georgia added two late scores to secure the win. Quarterback Stetson Bennett threw for 312 yards, but no touchdowns. Kendall Milton had 63 yards and one touchdown on the ground for the Bulldogs. Fellow running back Daijun Edwards also had a rushing touchdown for Georgia.
1.Alabama (Won against #20 Arkansas 49-26)
Once again, the Crimson Tide looked dominant from the start, jumping out to a 28-0 lead. However, the Razorbacks made a run in the second half to cut into the Alabama margin. With the lead cut to 28-23, the Crimson Tide run game took over. The Tide scored three rushing touchdowns in the fourth quarter, setting the final margin of victory. Quarterback Bryce Young looked good early, but was lost to an AC joint sprain. Running back Jahmyr Gibbs did the heavy lifting for Nick Saban, gaining 206 yards on 18 carries, with two touchdowns.