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The year in review in the SEC

The year in review in the SEC

Listed here are all 14 SEC teams, split into divisions, with their current records in bold type and our preseason predictions in italic type. And for those who have forgotten TideFans.com’s preseason picks for college football’s inaugural final four playoff, our picks included Florida State in second, Alabama in third and Ohio State in fourth. The team we missed? Read on to find out.

SECCG wrap-up: Tigers can’t play spoiler to Bama’s storybook run

This may not be the most dominating Alabama team in the school’s long, multi-championship history. But it is one of the most likable.

Every time Nick Saban talks about the 2014 edition of the Crimson Tide, his genuine affection for the team comes flooding out. Unlike the 2013 team, which suffered from leadership-related short circuits on both sides of the ball, the 2014 Alabama team is a strange combination of lunchpail mentality with the quick-strike ability of a coiled rattlesnake. The offense is led by the country’s unlikeliest elite quarterback, who is built like a sawed-off fireplug, runs like a whippet and has an uncanny knack for rising to the occasion.

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SECCG preview: Missouri, like Auburn, is a dangerous breed of Tiger

It’s hard to say how much of a contender Missouri is, given the sorry state of the SEC East. But it’s just as hard to say whether the SEC West’s two breeds of Tigers – the Auburn and LSU varieties – are more dangerous than the ones from the Show-Me State.

Because Missouri’s Tigers have done one thing that neither LSU nor Auburn showed capable of doing in 2014: They took care of business when they had to. Despite getting blown out by Georgia, Missouri managed to find a way to win six straight SEC games to close the season, four of those against bowl teams, three of them on the road. Missouri would be getting national title mentions right now if not for posting arguably the worst – or at least, the costliest – loss of any Power 5 school, a 31-27 jaw-dropper to Indiana.

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Auburn wrap-up: Movie-like finish gives new meaning to ‘Finish’

One of the most beloved moments in Alabama’s pregame video montage is a set of highlights strung together over a symphonic score, while one-word phrases are superimposed over the images.

“Grit,” “Toughness” and “Comebacks” are some of the selections, the video eventually fading out over an image of the late Paul “Bear” Bryant” being carried off the field by his players, with the word “Class” chosen for that final remembrance.

Alabama’s 2014 win over Auburn could give rise to an entire video based around a single word – “Resilience.”

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  By Jess Nicholas TideFans.com Editor-In-Chief Nov. 24, 2014 If there’s a box Nick Saban has yet to fully check off at Alabama, it’s the one marked “dominate one’s in-state rival.” Despite talking about dominating Auburn “365 days a year” in his introductory press conference, it just hasn’t happened. In Saban’s seven seasons at Alabama, […]

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SEC Previews and Predictions: Week 14

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  By Jess Nicholas, TideFans.com Editor-In-Chief Nov. 24, 2014 Last week’s record: 7-1 (87.5%) Season record: 78-24 (76.5%) The Predictions Dept. had a nice Week 13, setting up the final week of the regular season and our last chance to significantly improve our mediocre season mark. The top games this week are no doubt the […]

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  By Jess Nicholas TideFans.com Editor-In-Chief Nov. 23, 2014 Let’s just be honest about it: Western Carolina was paid to lose. No, Alabama didn’t have an under-the-table deal. No Division-IA school ever does when it hosts a Division-IAA school. Michigan certainly didn’t when then-D1AA Appalachian State upset the Wolverines in Ann Arbor and ultimately cost […]

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MSU wrap-up: Tide coming together at the right time

Given that top-ranked Mississippi State was an underdog in Saturday’s game, it would be incorrect to call this Alabama win an upset.

It would, however, be appropriate for college football’s new Playoff Committee to finally acknowledge what the oddsmakers were trying to tell them beforehand: Alabama is probably the best, most complete team in college football right now.

Oregon will probably claim its high-flying offense makes it the most dangerous; Florida State can point to Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston and its undefeated record and claim it’s the best team in the land. But Alabama is beginning to win games with defense, sort of an anachronism in today’s college football world, and as de rigueur as high-powered offenses are at the moment, a strong defense beats a strong offense most of time, as much as that might chafe those in an around the sport that have become addicted to points.

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MSU preview: For perhaps the first time ever, Bama is the hunter, not the hunted

Alabama is coming off its annual exposure to trench warfare, otherwise known as the LSU game, and the results were almost too terrible to imagine. Alabama needed a last-minute, game-tying drive and an overtime period to defeat the Bayou Bengals, and the Tide’s reward is a date with a Bulldog team that is more dynamic offensively, has better speed at the quarterback position and who spent last week toying with UT-Martin.

If this game was being played in Starkville, it would be even more of a circus than it figures to be in Tuscaloosa. But with Alabama’s home-field performances being so strong in 2014, the top concern might not be Mississippi State, but the annual post-LSU hangover from which the Crimson Tide always seems to suffer.

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SEC Previews and Predictions: Week 12

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SEC Previews and Predictions: Week 12

Auburn “snapped” what would have been a perfect, six-game Predictions Dept. performance in Week 11, and with the season winding down, the games certainly don’t get any easier to pick. It seems like the entire SEC West is in the running for what might constitute the game of the week this week, but it’s obviously Alabama-Mississippi State due to the implications to the divisional title race. Auburn’s tilt with Georgia and Texas A&M’s game against Missouri will go a long way toward determining the SEC East winner.

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