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Posted by on October 4th, 2011 in blog, CFF Features, Jeff Siverhus | No Comments

Although the title “Rivalry weekend” is typically reserved for the end of the season interstate matchups; this weekend provides three monster games we will preview. Many times border state rivalries can be more intense than those natural interstate games, thus is the case this weekend. These key matchups at the very least will set the tone for conference championships. Some of these matchups could definitely have BCS title game implications as well.


Georgia vs. Tennessee: These two schools have several teams that could be considered rivals; there are many reasons for this. First and foremost, each school is a charter member of the SEC and geographically they are border state schools within the conference that can naturally make for rivals. This series is no exception. Tennessee holds the series advantage 20-17-2, it has only been since 1992, when the SEC expanded to two divisions that a yearly meeting was created. Over the past decade it seems that the series has been fairly even, however one team has typically dominated individual contest, with no really close games. Adding to the mystic of this game now is the fact that UGA’s legendary coach Vince Dooley’s son is now head coach at Tennessee. See below for some memorable moments in series.


Prediction: This game will be a much closer game than previous games, going down to the wire. In the end I think UGA’s much improved defense will be the difference, limiting Tyler Bray to modest success and shutting down UT’s running game.


Red River Rivalry (formerly “Shootout”, changed for P.C. in 2005): Oklahoma vs. Texas. This will be the 106th meeting between these two storied programs. Six out of the last ten meetings the winner has went on to play in the BCS title game. In 2005 it was voted the most intense rivalry by D1 coaches, even bigger than Ohio St.-Michigan. This will be Bob Stoops 12th game as O.U. head coach, since taking over the O.U. program he has won seven of the last eleven meetings. See below for memorable moments.


Prediction: While Texas has posted a 4-0 starts this year, these wins have been to inferior opponents. I don’t believe Mac Brown’s team has been tested by a quality opponent yet. Conversely, Bob Stoops team is a veteran group and I don’t believe the Sooner Scooner will stop until it is parked in front of the Superdome in New Orleans. Winner- Oklahoma


L.SU. vs. Florida: Within the SEC there are so many rivalries, especially among charter members; this matchup is no exception. This rivalry dates back to 1937, and UF holds the series advantage 30-24-3. These two schools have dominated the college landscape over the last ten years, combining to win three of the last five BCS Championships. Although this isn’t one of those border state rivalries, these two schools just don’t like each other, which has produced a great rivalry and some classic games. In modern era the 1987 game took this rivalry to a different level. Three seasons after the SEC let LSU have UF’s Sugar Bowl bid, the rivalry reached a fever pitch with the return of former head coach Bill Arnsparger to Baton Rouge in 1987. Arnsparger had left LSU only months before to take the athletic director job in Gainesville after dismissing rumors of doing so. One of his assistants, Mike Archer, was promoted to LSU’s head coaching job over UF grad Steve Spurrier. Despite speculation in Baton Rouge that Arnsparger would share the Tigers’ playbook with the Gators’ then-coach Galen Hall, LSU pulled out a close game, 13-10. See below for memorable moments in series.


Prediction:  The gators come into Death Valley fresh off of a thorough beat down from Alabama. To add insult to injury UF’s starting QB John Brantley injured his leg and will miss the game. LSU’s defense is smothering and it will be a long night for a true freshman starting his first game in LSU on a Saturday night. Wow, talk about “baptism by fire”. LSU should win easily.



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