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Hot Reads: Up is down, down is up in SEC this week

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Trey DePriest didn't set foot on the field against West Virginia, and it showed. His presence should make a difference from here on out. (Source: Alabama Athletic Communications) Trey DePriest didn't set foot on the field against West Virginia, and it showed. His presence should make a difference from here on out. (Source: Alabama Athletic Communications)
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    Thursday, September 4 2014 8:00 AM EDT2014-09-04 12:00:24 GMT
    Texas A&M was a surprising team in its first game, but that may not be such a good thing. On the other hand, an Alabama squad that was just blah is likely headed in a more positive direction.More >>
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    Thursday, August 28 2014 7:00 AM EDT2014-08-28 11:00:25 GMT
    Don't worry. We'll be a lot nicer to the players in the SEC than the Emmy voters were to Netflix. We kind of have to - it's highly unlikely an actor could power clean the equivalent of a human being.More >>
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  • Hot Reads: Ranking the defenses in the SEC

    Hot Reads: Ranking the defenses in the SEC

    Wednesday, July 16 2014 12:55 PM EDT2014-07-16 16:55:17 GMT

    With offenses becoming increasingly explosive, plugging the holes is more imperative than ever. It's no surprise Alabama and Florida top the list, but the rest of the rankings may surprise you.

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    With offenses becoming increasingly explosive, plugging the holes is more imperative than ever. It's no surprise Alabama and Florida top the list, but the rest of the rankings may surprise you.

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(RNN) - The weekly dose of reality for the NFL Lite is back, ladies and gentleman.

If there's a place to go and learn why a good team isn't as good as it seems and why a bad team could beat the slobber out of an undefeated one on a given Saturday, it's here.

By the way, try substituting one cup of coffee a day with tea. That doesn't have any relevance to anything, it's just something good to try.

It is what it is (unless it isn't)

OMG, kids! LSU came back to beat Wisconsin. Yeeeaaah, no they didn't.

The Badgers just kind of lost. They played the last 20 minutes of football like Brad Lidge was their closer. And after toting the mail for 140 yards, running back Melvin Gordon inexplicably disappeared from Wisconsin's backfield.

What the Tigers actually did was play something that in no way resembled LSU football. First-year starter Anthony Jennings threw for 113 more yards than the entire backfield accounted for on the ground. With names like Hilliard, Fournette and Magee running through the turnstiles, that's not supposed to happen.

The good news is that it's easier for a running game to pick up than a passing game. Sam Houston State and Louisiana Monroe come swamping before Mississippi State visits.

It's in the air

Which is pretty much where the ball stayed all afternoon in the Texas A&M-South Carolina game.

And AP's opinion that the Aggies are the ninth-best team in the country? Not buying that.

They gave up a 69-yard pass, a 46-yarder and four more passes of 24 yards or longer.

Aggie fans be like, "Yeah, but we only gave up 67 rushing yards and sacked Dylan Thompson three times, Hot Reads Guy! Plus, our offense is unstoppable."

So Hot Reads be like, "Coaches don't run when they're down three scores after halftime, especially coaches with names like Steve Spurrier. Besides, Carolina was playing with more adrenaline than skill."

And then football know-it-alls be like, "Well, that Kenny Hill kid is going to be better than Jonathan Paul Manziel."

Then Hot Reads goes off all, "He better be 'cause in the long run, the defense will still be as bad or not much better than last season."

Calm down, Alabama fans

Come to think of it, "Calm down, Alabama fans" should be a weekly feature on Hot Reads. We'll file that under "G" for great ideas.

But for now, let's not fret about the nearly 400 yards the Crimson Tide gave up to West Virginia.

Trey DePriest, unquestionably the most valuable player on that defense, wasn't on the field because of some undisclosed NCAA rule that was probably stupid to begin with. Once he's back, the Alabama defense will once again be a unified body of fire-breathing, blood-sniffing Nick Saban Mini Me's.

So just chill. Not like you were worried to begin with because, hey, you're Alabamaaaaaa.

SEC vs. SEC

Ole Miss at Vanderbilt

The Commodores were a dumpster fire in the season opener. The Rebels were a trash can fire, which is a scale of horrible somewhat less monumental than a dumpster fire.

Putting them together on the field could turn into the equivalent of a roadkill barbecue. Just sayin', ya'll.

Assuming Vandy doesn't confuse an important email from the SEC for spam advertising Taiwanese-made shoes that double as alarm clocks, let's await judgment on Derek Mason's first year in Nashville.

When Ole Miss has the ball, watch the area between the sideline and the hash marks. The field is 53 yards wide, and the Rebels will use every inch of it.

When the Commodores have the ball, watch the area between the hash marks. They have to get some type of running game going to give breathing room to Patton Robinette (or whoever is playing QB). However, the Mississippi law firm of Nkemdiche, Nkemdiche and Bryant will be handling cases all day.

Stat of the Week

4 - That's the number of SEC teams that will play an opponent this weekend for the first time ever. Only one of those teams (San Jose State) is in the FBS. Nicholls State is the only team with a loss, something that surely will change after Saturday. If not, the universe might blow up.

Follow me on Twitter @GJones_RNN

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