Sunday, October 24, 2010

Win the East? I just don't know.

Ok, so Dawgfans across this nation are in a frenzy right now - and it ain't of the "Fire Mark Richt" variety. No, my beloved red and black blooded fellows and gals are of the belief that the Dawgs can actually win the East in a year that featured a 4 game losing streak - and they're right. The Dawgs were dead-to-rights three weeks ago, and people were saying Richt's team would go 1-11. Well, now we stand at 4-4, are second in the East, and playing some pretty darn good football. We COULD win it. Will we? I don't know - and the signs don't point too favorably for it.

The road doesn't get any easier. Luckily, each team remaining in the East race has its own challenges ahead. We have to play Florida and undefeated Auburn. South Carolina has TN, FL and ARK. Florida has UGA, Vandy and SC remaining.

We'll take it as a given for the sake of this argument that UGA wins out. We need South Carolina to lose twice. Looking at their remaining schedule, I just don't know that it will happen. I had hoped Vandy would take care of business and drop the Gamecocks...but betting on Vandy this year is just a bad idea. They have serious issues at QB and the defense isn't strong - even to Commodore standards.

By beating Vanderbilt, South Carolina has created a scenario where they win every tie-breaker scenario with UGA. Had South Carolina LOST to Vanderbilt, Georgia would have the opportunity to play its way into a 3-way tiebreaker. However, if Vandy wins out and South Carolina loses but one, South Carolina will win the East due to their 2-0 record against the other two teams in the tiebreaker.

If UGA can get past FL and AU, then Florida is eliminated from the East and UGA needs USC to drop two games.

For South Carolina, the Arkansas game is loseable. I just don't know about the other two. Tennessee isn't very good, and this year, neither is Florida. If Florida drops the game to Georgia, they will have four straight losses - but may catch Vandy at just the right moment. Losing to Georgia would be rough on them...but Vandy would give them a chance to rebound before taking on South Carolina.

But, I suppose I shouldn't count out Tennessee. Dooley will be pushing those guys hard, and I just can't forsee a TN team not getting an SEC victory. Maybe it can happen against SC this weekend.

In actuality, UGA could be holding the lead in the East when we head to Auburn on Nov 13. At that point, it would most likely come down to defeating a 10-0 top-3 Auburn squad in order to go to the SEC Championship game. As if that Rivalry ever needs MORE pressure applied to it.

Can these Dawgs pull it off? I just don't know.
but I'd love to see it.

GO Dawgs.


Unknown said...

Pretty sure you're wrong on the tie-breaker.

Yes, we have to beat UF and USC has to lose 2 to have a chance but if that happens we could acutally lose to Auburn and would still go.

Head to head is first. It would wash in the scenario above. Then you go do East Division record and UF would be out (they would have 2 losses and one would be to either UF or UT).

Then we go based b/c we would have beaten FL head to head.

Unknown said...

That should actually say USC would be out first...not UF.

Ben Dukes said...

Actually Josh, I'm right. Your scenario requires the Dawgs to lose to Auburn. In MY scenario, the Dawgs win out. That means the tie-breaker happens at 3 conference losses, and FL is not involved.

If we take it to a 4-loss scenario where UGA, FL and USC are all involved, you're ignoring the fact that either Vanderbilt or Kentucky could also be in that scenario, as a UGA win over FL means FL has to win out, giving FL wins over Vandy and South Carolina. USC would then have to lose to either TN or Arkansas. Vandy losing to FL would give them 4 conferences losses. So, now, UGA, USC, FL and Vandy are at 4 conference losses, right there with Kentucky. Since Kentucky has a better chance of winning out that Vandy, let's say for the purpose of this argument that Kentucky is the one that makes it through at 4 losses.


1st tiebreaker is head-to-head among the tied.

UGA - 2-1
FL - 2-1
KY - 2-1
USC - 2-1

2nd tiebreaker is division record.

UGA - 4-1
FL - 4-1
KY - 3-2
USC - 4-1 or 3-2

If, under that tiebreaker USC lost to TN and not ARK, then UGA would be the SEC East Champ. However, if USC lost to ARK and not TN, KY would be eliminated, and we'd move on to...

Head-to-head vs team with best overall conference record.

UGA 1-1
USC 1-1
FL 1-1

So, 4th tiebreaker: Overall record vs west.

UGA 0-3
USC 1-2
FL 0-3

South Carolina wins.

But, for the sake of simplicity, I like to just look at the scenario with UGA winning out...because if we don't win out, our chances of making it to Atlanta grow infinitely smaller.

Unknown said...

Kentucky is 1 and 4 and would have to win out to be involved. Vandy would have to win 2 from Ark, FL, KY, and Tenn...and thats not happening.

Neither of them are going to be involved in any tie-breakers. For one thing they play each other so that is one automatic loss.

And scenario didn't require UGA to lose to Auburn. Obviously, if SC loses two and we win out then we go. I didn't think I needed to draw that up. I was just stating that we could still lose to Auburn and go. Your original post said it would come down to beating Auburn...which is not correct.

ThePetis said...

It's really not worth arguing about at this point, but I believe as soon as a team is eliminated in a tie-breaker, you start over at #1 with the remaining teams.

Ben Dukes said...

Sorry Josh, you're still wrong. For some reason, you are completely ignoring the fact that in my original post, I wrote,

"We'll take it as a given for the sake of this argument that UGA wins out. "

That means, that for the ENTIRETY OF MY POST, everything is contingent upon UGA winning out. If UGA wins out, South Carolina holds every tie-breaking scenario over UGA. This is because there is no possibility of a three-way tie with anyone who will do us any good, should UGA win out. The only team that could possibly be in a 3-way tie scenario should we win-out is Vandy...and like you said, that ain't gonna happen. This is what you're ignoring.

I never said "We have to win at Auburn." I said, if USC drops the next two games, then the Auburn game becomes the one that would send us to Atlanta. If USC drops the next two, and we LOSE at Auburn, then we'd also need USC to lose to Florida (because if they beat FL, FL is out of the tiebreaker). I'm sorry, but just like you don't see Vandy or Kentucky ending up with 4 losses, I don't see South Carolina dropping its next three games.

Also, the comment "Kentucky is 1-4 and would have to win out" bothers me. Were you one of the people who wrote the Dawgs off when they were 1-4? Just wondering. Kentucky is a good team and plays three winnable conference games from here on in. They could very well be 4-4 at the end of the season.

At any rate, my original post did NOT say it comes down to beating Auburn. I said, it would MOST LIKELY come down to defeating Auburn, because if UGA is in the East lead going into that game, it means USC has already dropped 2 games, and I don't think they're going to drop all three.

I know you're probably one of those people who loves to go to blogs and air out just how right you are and how wrong the blogger is, but perhaps you should actually read the entire blog and let it soak in before you comment on things. Things like "We'll take it as a given for the sake of this argument that UGA wins out," and "it would most likely come down to defeating a 10-0 top-3 Auburn squad" are pretty important. Never did I say we have to beat Auburn to get to Atlanta.

I'm actually surprised you didn't "correct" me and tell me that Auburn is only 8-0 right now.

Never did I say there isn't a scenario where we could beat USC in a tiebreaker. But, given my original circumstances of UGA winning out, there isn't a single tiebreaker where we'll beat USC, and the Auburn game could be the game that sends us to Atlanta if USC already has two losses when we play Auburn. Under the original terms of the post, I am correct.

Deal with it.

Unknown said...

Dude...if I struck a nerve then I apologize. Sorry for being "one of those people". Again, if you read my first post I said I was pretty sure you were wrong. I will be ok either way though...didn't mean to make your head explode.

Sorry if I misread. Simply meant to put that in a 3 way tie with USC and UF that UGA would go b/c to even be in that scenario USC would have to lose to another Eastern division foe.

It's your blog man...I was just dropping by.

Ben Dukes said...

You are very right on the final point. In a 3-way with Florida UGA wins...

Then again, in a 3-way, doesn't everybody win?

Unknown said...

I have to say...I do agree with you on that.