SEC Championship Game Preview: #3 Auburn vs. #5 Missouri

It’s been one exciting season for SEC fans, unhealthy and after Auburn’s historic upset win last Saturday night over the defending national champions, viagra the Alabama Crimson Tide, malady the SEC Championship Game contenders are finally set with an the unexpected matchup of #3 Auburn, the SEC West champion facing #5 Missouri from the East.  Let the madness begin… 

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#5 Missouri vs. #3 Auburn on Saturday at 3:00 pm on CBS

What you need to know: Both teams were considered under-rated this year and beat the odds by placing in the top three of the conference, along with Alabama. Atlanta will host the SEC title game Saturday afternoon, as Missouri paints their colors on the Georgia Dome field for the first time in school history. Auburn is potentially one game away from competing for a national championship, but they must not look past the 11-1 Missouri Tigers.

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Auburn is coming in with a matching record of 11-1, with an early loss to a tough LSU team. With considerable wins over Georgia, Texas A&M, and a miraculous win against the reigning SEC champions, Alabama, Auburn looks unbeatable.

This is Missouri’s second year in the Southeastern Conference and the team’s first SEC championship game. Their only loss this season came from South Carolina in double overtime 27-24. Their vice? They didn’t play Alabama and they didn’t play Auburn. Some argue that Auburn had a slightly tougher schedule, others vouch for Missouri’s win over Georgia, Texas A&M and Ole Miss.

 

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Auburn

What to watch for: Auburn is on an eight game winning streak with the potential to bump that number up to nine this weekend. They are ranked No. 5 in the NCAA in rushing yards, but face a stifling Missouri defense that allows less than 20 points per contest. Auburn’s quarterback, Nick Marshall, is a PTP (Prime Time Player), as Dick Vitale would say.

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He is efficient with his passing game, but also isn’t afraid to rush the field. Over the past 3 games, he has averaged 134 rushing yards. Auburn also has a pack of running backs hungry for the yards. Tre Mason, Corey Grant, and Cameron Artis-Payne are all looking to make an impact in the game. They all are capable of busting out with 100+ yard games.

A weak point for the Auburn Tigers is their secondary. They are facing a tough Missouri receiving core. L’Damian Washington and Dorial Green-Beckham are two great receivers that are starting to look like Megatron a.k.a Calvin Johnson on the field. Auburn secondary has been synonymous with giving up big plays, which may prove to be detrimental against a Missouri team that isn’t scared to throw. 

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Missouri

What to watch for: Missouri has shown their true colors over the course of the season. They have been dominating the defense of the SEC since day one, with Michael Sam, Kony Ealy and now E.J. Gaines named defensive players of the week.

Photo Credit: espn.go.com

But the quiet storm of the team is now reversing its silence. Missouri’s got some of the top receivers in the nation.  L’Damian Washington racked up 824 yards for 10 touchdowns this year, comparatively to his receiving compadre, Dorial Green-Beckham.

‘DGB’, a Missouri breed player, came to Mizzou as a top recruit two years ago. After using last year to adjust to the high demands of collegiate play, the sophomore has 686 receiving yards this year, collecting 10 TDs. Auburn’s QB Marshall can run, but the Missouri defense has deemed to be unstoppable.  Franklin has an arm, and despite an injury this year has managed to pass for 1952 yards against the brutal SEC defense.

My Prediction: Missouri 31 Auburn 28

 

Category: NCAA

About the author: Paige Travis is the essence of a sports lover with a diva persona. She has played sports competitively for over 10 years and traveled around the country to compete on multiple levels, but don’t let the basketball shorts and ponytails fool you; she is a diva on a mission. Her obsession with heels is just as strong as her obsession with the Chicago Bulls and White Sox. Her favorite athletes include Derrick Rose and Johnny Knox and the very handsome Matt Kemp. Currently, Paige is studying Broadcast Journalism with an emphasis in sports and news at the University of Missouri.

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