Auburn questions: SEC championship
What most impressed you with Auburn’s win over Alabama?
Bill Meador: Poise and determination are the trademarks of AU this year. They have a real belief in each other and an ALL IN family attitude. Auburn just never lost hope or gave up.
Rick Dunn: UAT went 0-for-8 in third down conversions in the second half. As poor as our offensive output was in the first half, theirs was worse in the second half. I’m not sure how that happened. My best guess is that we raised the intensity level and started playing tighter coverage.
How do you expect this match up with South Carolina to be different than the first?
Bill Meador: I am sure both teams will have studied all the films of each other they can get their hands on to dissect the other team. I think both will stay pretty much with what got them there, but with a few new wrinkles for good measure.
Rick Dunn: Both teams are better, but I honestly think that Auburn has improved more. We are coming off an emotional win, and the game will be at a neutral site this time. Those issues concern me the most. Jeffery scares me more than Lattimore. He is such a dominant receiver. I don’t mean to sound over confident, but I had rather play USC again than I had three other SEC West teams. Cam will have a big day; one way or the other.
The NCAA found that Cecil Newton was working on a pay-for-play plan for MSU but found no evidence that Cam or Auburn knew of it. They also noted the investigation was not over. Given that the Reggie Bush scandal took four years to resolve, how does Wednesday’s ruling make you feel?
Bill Meador: The differences in this and the Reggie Bush saga are number one —Cam is not living in a home paid for by boosters and two — there is no evidence to prove that Auburn knew about any scheme or paid any money. Unless new evidence comes out to the contrary, all is well on the Plains
Rick Dunn: We are one, big step closer to the end. We may even be at the end. Absolutely no evidence has been presented that Cam or Auburn has done anything wrong. I am amazed at how eager some people have been to assume the worst. I have confidence in Auburn’s administration. If mistakes were made, so be it. We will deal with them.
Barring a loss in Atlanta, Auburn is in the National Title game. Does that set the SEC championship game up for a “trap” game?
Bill Meador: I know that Auburn has South Carolina square in its sights for Saturday. All could be lost if the Tigers do not focus on and take care of choking the Cocks in Atlanta. Should Auburn lose the USC game there is still a very strong case to be made for them to play in the championship game versus the Quackers from Oregon because of their strength of schedule, but they better not count on that.
Rick Dunn: I wouldn’t consider it a trap game in the sense that they are looking ahead. The nature of our win over UAT and the way the team was treated could have a disruptive effect that carries over. I believe that we will be focused; at least after the first couple of series.
Who is your pick to win this weekend and what’s your final score prediction?
Bill Meador: I really look for the Tigers from the Plains to finally put an entire game together and win 48-41.
Rick Dunn: Auburn wins, 41- 24