Friday, October 18, 2013

CLAWS vs. PAWS - Week 8

 Weekend of October 19, 2013


South Carolina's brutal SEC schedule continues as they travel to Knoxville to take on their 4th straight SEC opponent without a conference win.  Right now, UNC, Vandy, Kentucky, & Arkansas are a combine 0-12 in conference play.  Add in Tennessee's current SEC record and the winless streak reaches 14.

But you can't judge a school by it's in-conference record only, can you?  These teams has to have beaten good teams out of conference, right?


UNC is 1-5 with a 24 point home loss to East Carolina
Georgia lost at Clemson and by 2 scores to SEC newcomer Missouri
Vanderbilt needed two 4th quarter scores to break free of a UMass team with 2 wins in their last 21 games (at least it's better than a 21 game span in USC's past)
UCF, arguably USC's best win, needed two TD's in the last 2 minutes to beat a 1-win Memphis team (that's averaging 2-3 wins per year)
Kentucky is 1-5 with a double digit loss to Western Kentucky
Arkansas has been "karma'd" and has lost 4 straight games, including one to Rutgers
Tennessee lost to Oregon by 45

But don't let that fool you because this South Carolina team is battle tested and can play with any team in the country, at least that's what the faithful are saying.  Unfortunately, we can't prove it.  And we will have to wait at least another week to find out if it's true as Tennessee won't tell us much.

South Carolina doesn't start as fast as last week, but they kick into high gear towards the end of the half and cruise to another victory over the mighty SEC East.

South Carolina 37

Tennessee 20


Carolina fans justifiably are breathing a little easier this week.  To be frank, all of us were beginning to wonder if we had another gear other than mediocre and sluggish.  Now we know that we have it in us to play a game that is crisp and clean like a machine.
Which takes us to Rocky Top.  Tennessee has morphed into “Moral Victory U” of late after once being a national power.  Their recent loss to Georgia is being hailed as the sign of great things to come.  Meanwhile, we know that our loss to Georgia was embarrassing because they are SO overrated.    Only Clemson would ever celebrate a win over them at this point, much less a loss.  

I have seen enough football to recognize a team’s “desperate” hail mary effort game, and I am betting that is what we witnessed when the Vols nearly “upset” the Dawgs.  UT will come out excited and hot just like Central Florida and Arkansas did.  Maybe even build an early lead.  But over time, the Gamecocks’ depth and balance will win out and we will pull away late setting up a big trip to Mizzou.  

South Carolina 26
Tennessee 17



The game the ACC has been waiting for is finally here, in spite of a near hiccup by Clemson last week against Boston College.

The world won't be disappointed as Clemson and Florida State put on a show.  Boyd, Watkins, and the random tight end get it going for Clemson while Winston proves his mettle as he and their big receivers do damage against Clemson's secondary.

Florida State finds a rhythm early, but Clemson is never more than a score behind.  Through defensive play, Clemson eventually pulls even, only to slowly build a 4-7 point lead.  As the game ends, Florida State has the ball with a chance to win, but the Clemson D stands tall.

There's a reason FSU hasn't won in Death Valley since 2001.  In fact, Vanderbily & Ole Miss have won more frequently at South Carolina than FSU has won at Clemson.

The streak continues!

Clemson 34

Florida State 30


The ACC, Kirk Herbstreit and the rest of the high schools in the “Aunt Cindy Conference” can finally breathe a bit and stop wetting themselves this week.  Yes, everyone is going to tune in to watch an ACC vs. ACC contest for the first time in decades. 

All signs point to a Florida State win but I ain’t picking it that way.  Dabo the crazy is out bouncing around like a yipping puppy and saying stupid things even by his standards.  Clemson is making this some kind of biblical event that will end in the Tigers being given Moses’ staff to lead the ACC out of bondage from the SEC’s decade of dominance.  This has a buildup and feel to it similar to their hyping the Orange Bowl against West Virginia.  

I think Lee Corso will even pick the Tigers, which also would indicate a “Seminole Win” if you don’t mind my butchering a really nice John Anderson song title.  But far be it from me to jinx the Noles by picking them (check my Arkansas-Carolina pick for evidence).  So instead I will say the Klimpletons have their big night, Herbie is crying like a girl at the prom in excitement , and Brent Musberger will even find a Tiger Cheerleader or two at the Esso Club to celebrate with.  (Hopefully, he will pick the ones that remembered to shave their mustaches).   J/K with you my Tiger friends.  I know that none of them shave.   

Clemson 34
Florida State 30




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