Originally Posted by TerryP
In their continuing off-season articles on the SEC, ESPN has been listing what they consider to be the most important games for each team for the 2014 season.
They've covered a few teams so far. They've listed UT's most important game as Mizzou, Vandy's as Ole Miss, and A&M's versus the Gamecocks.
Thursday afternoon they released their thoughts on which game is the most important for South Carolina
; Florida on Nov. 15th.
In the last part of that write-up one sentence caught my attention, "Chances are the winner from the East won't have less than two losses heading into the last couple of weeks of the season."
This is an opinion I'm inclined to believe. However, it also gives me reason to also believe the Florida game isn't the most important.
Assuming they are correct and every team in the SEC east has two losses, wouldn't that make the game against Auburn most important? In the SEC tie-breaker rules a loss to a cross-divisional opponent carries more weight.
The only thing I can come up with supporting their opinion is they're also anticipating UF with a loss to a western division team. BUT, they don't say that (and haven't released UF's most important game.)
In your SEC schedule, which team do you consider to be the most important opponent for 2014?
I was going to say UofGA but, if the last few years are any indication, it doesn't matter if South Carolina beats them or not.
I then thought about UofTN. The last two years, Tenn has been the source of the most heartache for me-for two different reasons. However, I cannot hang my hat on that game. If the Gamecocks lose to any SEC East teams, it is logical to hope that team would be among UofVandy, UofKY or UofTN because I assume USC will not have to hope to win the tiebreaker against one of those teams.
Until I see any signs of life from UofFL to challenge for the SEC east, I would lump them with the group above.
I guess that leaves our SEC West games to consider. Out of UofMO, UofAU and UofTexasA&M, Auburn is the one on the road and SC have not faired well against them. The case could be made that Auburn is most important in terms of defining wins more than the other teams.
ON THE OTHER HAND - with the playoff this year, you don't want to lose to the lowest ranking team on your schedule. In conference, that looks like it will be Kentucky.
So Kentucky could be the most important in terms of playoff chances if we have to suffer a loss.
The third way to look at it is to take one game at a time and get better each week. To that end, Texas A&M would be the most important.
I will have to go with Texas A&M