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September 22nd: College Football Viewing Guide

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Kick-off this upcoming Saturday is quickly moving upon us, so with some thirteen hours to go before the opening of the Ole Miss v. Florida game (11:30, Lincoln Financial), here is a quick viewing guide for your college football Saturday.

  • The LSU v. South Carolina game is getting quite interesting. Matt Flynn is still suffering from a high ankle sprain that he sustained against Virginia Tech, the same injury that caused him to miss the MTSU game last week. He'll likely start against South Carolina -- though Les Miles is not committing just yet to either Flynn or Perrilloux -- but he likely won't be 100%. Alabama fans who remember the 1999 season (think Shaun Alexander) can well understand the difficulties of a high ankle sprain. Moreover, star wide receiver Early Doucet won't play due to a groin injury, and it's speculated that he will miss a couple of weeks at the least. Miles was quoted as saying, "It's a pretty significant injury. Right now, we're aways away from Doucet playing again." Will Arnold -- the incredibly talented yet perpetually injured guard -- will miss the game as well with a viral infection in his knees. And I have no clue what in the hell that means. On top of that, starting defensive tackle Charles Alexander went down in a non-contact drill this week with a knee injury. He won't play this week, and it is feared that he is done for the year -- and given his status likely for his collegiate career -- with torn knee ligaments. Is that not enough? Not quite, apparently. A tropical depression will hit the Gulf of Mexico in the next few hours, and Baton Rouge is expected to get a ton of rain, so it will be wet and sloppy, and that's on a field that usually doesn't hold up too well to the weather simply because the extremely high volume of rain that area gets normally. Expect lots of slipping and sliding and poor ball-handling. I still expect LSU to win with relative ease, but this game has gotten a hell of lot more interesting in the past week. I would link to all of the articles, but the game will be over before I get all of the links posted. I guess you'll have to take my word.
  • Brad Lester, who was expected to be Auburn's starting tailback before being sidetracked with academic issues, was suspended another two games today. As a result, he will miss this Saturday's game against New Mexico State, and also next week's expected massacre in Gainesville. He will, however, be eligible to play beginning with the Vanderbilt game the following week, and he will likely start then. Lester has been practicing with the team all year, so he should be good to go once he becomes eligible. Nevertheless, expect to see Tate and co. carrying the ball for the Tigers tomorrow.
  • Darren Mustin will be a game-time decision against Georgia. After suffering a shoulder stinger last week against Arkansas, Mustin has been in a black no-contact jersey, and it honestly seems like he won't start. If he doesn't, Prince Hall will start in his spot, and he has been taking reps at Mustin's inside linebacker position this week, something he did not get the luxury of a week ago. Hopefully that will mean improved play on his part.
  • Darren McFadden -- who missed the final two offensive series for the Hogs last week against Alabama with a slight concussion -- said today that he was feeling "pretty good" and expects to play Saturday against Kentucky when the Wildcats come to Fayetteville. Considering how big this game is for the Hogs, that shouldn't surprise anyone.
  • Ole Miss quarterback Seth Adams, despite suffering a sprained shoulder (throwing shoulder) last week against Vanderbilt, apparently will play in about thirteen hours when the Florida Gators make the trek to Oxford. Best of luck to the Rebels and all, but this one is still likely to be a massacre, Adams or not.
  • Considering the tropical depression that will come ashore somewhere in the Gulf of Mexico the next several hours, it is possible that we will see some rain in the Alabama v. Georgia game. It won't be monsoon-like conditions, but a bit of rain shouldn't really surprise anyone. That said, the Rain Gods are usually pretty kind to the Crimson Tide, so hopefully it will be another clear September Saturday afternoon.
  • As for a game currently in progress, Oklahoma is playing Tulsa in Tulsa right now on ESPN2. It'd been a bit of a slow night for the Sooners offensively, only 55 points on the board with 9:53 remaining. Okay, make that 62 points with 5:20 to go. Don't know what their problem is tonight.
  • Finally, to close, ESPN's Joe Schad is reporting that Ryan Mallett will be starting for the Michigan Wolverines this Saturday against Penn State. Mallett is the highly-recruited true freshman out of Texarkana, Texas, and he had a great beginning to his career as a starter last week against Notre Dame. Though this game has upset written all over it, the Penn State defense has to be salivating at the thought of a true freshman quarterback.
Enjoy.