Week 7 looks to be another good one as SEC teams are figuring out ways to game plan for their opponents.
There are crucial matchups within each game that have the potential to swing the momentum at any point in the game. One key block, tackle, or turnover can be the difference between victory and defeat.
Positional matchups are always intriguing, and Bryan Fischer with Athlon Sports sees two such matchups in the SEC that will be key on Saturday.
Fischer believes the second best position battle in all of college football this weekend will be between Arkansas OL Frank Ragnow and Alabama DL Da’Ron Payne:
Ragnow will likely be the first center taken in the draft next spring and it’s possible he could even slip into the first round. Performing well against one of the best defensive linemen in the SEC in Payne will go a long ways toward helping enhance that reputation.
The Razorbacks have struggled this season with a 2-3 record so far while the No. 1 ranked Tide feature another dominant defense. The Tide have allowed more than 20 points just once, and Payne is a force to be reckoned with up front.
If the Hogs have any hope to score and keep up with Alabama, Ragnow will need to do impressive work upfront to lead a rushing attack that was held in check by South Carolina last week.
Another key matchup for Fischer within the SEC is LSU LBs Arden Key and Donnie Alexander going against Auburn RBs Kerryon Johnson and Kamryn Pettway and QB Jarrett Stidham:
Auburn has not won in Baton Rouge since 1999 and if the home version of the Tigers want to keep it that way, they’ll have to stop the dangerous ground attack that the visitors form Alabama bring. Pettway and Johnson are the one-two punch of downhill runners but LSU must also account for Stidham’s legs as well. Key hasn’t been great as he slowly progresses into game shape but he could play a big role in pressuring the quarterback too.
Auburn has certainly hit its stride with a strong 3-0 showing in SEC play to this point. The offense is clicking on all cylinders and is moving the ball well through the air and on the ground.
Key and Alexander will have to be on top of their game in stopping the rush and getting after the passer for LSU.
Source: Saturday Down South