The first weekend of our local ESPN College Football Pick ‘Em Contest is in the books, and Steve Stacey has jumped out to an early lead in the contest. Brad Philen’s in second place. Eric Byrd and Chris Newton finished the weekend tied for third place.
Eric Talbot and Sharon Peacock found themselves tied for fifth place while Travis Presley and I were tied for seventh place. Mark Peacock’s in ninth place. Nick Watson, Hunter Norris and defending champion Ricky Taylor were tied for tenth place.
If you’re participating in this contest and didn’t crack the Top 10, don’t sweat it. We’ve got 13 weeks to go, and it’s a marathon, not a sprint. The Top 10 will change a lot over the next three months, so keep playing.
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Taking a look at this week’s SEC football schedule, there are only two games featuring head-to-head match-ups between SEC teams. Kentucky will play at Florida at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, and South Carolina will play Mississippi State in Starkville at 6 p.m. Other games this Saturday will include Western Kentucky at Alabama, Arkansas State at Auburn, Virginia Tech against Tennessee in Bristol, Nicholls State at Georgia, Eastern Michigan at Missouri, Middle Tennessee at Vanderbilt, Arkansas at TCU, Jacksonville State at LSU, Wofford at Ole Miss and Prairie View A&M at Texas A&M.
Here are my predictions as to how those games will turn out. I like Alabama over Western Kentucky, Auburn over Arkansas State, TCU over Arkansas, Missouri over Eastern Michigan, Florida over Kentucky, Vandy over Middle Tennessee State, Mississippi State over South Carolina, Tennessee over Virginia Tech, Nicholls State over Georgia, LSU over Jacksonville State, Ole Miss over Wofford and Texas A&M over Prairie View A&M.
Last week: 10-3. So far this season: 10-3.
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Hillcrest got a big win over Flomaton on Friday night, and the Jags needed to get that win under their belt. Entering the season, Flomaton was viewed to be one of the best teams in 3A Region 1, and Hillcrest did themselves a big favor by getting a win over Flomaton in their region-opener. Flomaton had even been getting a little 3A poll buzz early in the season, and a win over Hillcrest probably would have propelled them into the Top 10.
Hillcrest, ranked No. 8 in 3A, doesn’t look to move up in the poll this week as none of the teams ranked in front of them lost. This coming Friday, opportunity knocks again for Hillcrest when they play No. 5-ranked T.R. Miller here in Evergreen. If the Jags can beat Miller, they’ll not only improve their chances of winning the region and making the playoffs, but they’ll also move up in the weekly prep poll.
Sparta will play their region-opener this coming Friday night when they travel to East Alabama to take on Abbeville Christian. I fully expect Sparta to pick up their first win of the season on Friday night, which will also improve their chances of making the playoffs again this season. Abbeville Christian enters tomorrow night’s game 0-3 on the season.