and that's cover SEC football. Click above if you have AJC Insider. If not, here's my book report:
1. Tommy Tuberville thinks that this year's team is probably his most talented at Auburn. Apparently, he didn't learn from Bear Bryant or Vince Dooley (or, going the other direction, Jim "This is the team I've been waiting 50 years to coach" Donnan) that playing up your talent is never a good thing. Maybe he looks at those five home games to start the season and thinks that he has nothing to worry about. (Does anyone else get the sense that the Auburn-Georgia Tech game will be a "first team to get a seven-point lead wins" game?)
2. Alabama has not made it through a season with one quarterback since 1997. Is that bad luck or a function of the fact that they just haven't had good quarterback play and as a result, have changed their starters constantly. Based on the fact that a Bama QB hasn't started an NFL game since Richard Todd, I'm going with the latter explanation. Your average hard core Bama fan, who believes that an amalgamation of forces ranging from Phil Fulmer and the NCAA to the Trilateral Commission and the Freemasons has kept their program down, probably believes that it's all Roy Kramer's fault.
3. Does anyone see something wrong with this statement by Tony Barnhart: "The first is Leak's size — or lack of it. He is strong but still undersized at 6 foot, 195 pounds. Utah's Smith was much stronger at 6-4, 212." Who would describe lanky-ass Alex Smith as "strong"? Aren't Leak's dimensions indicative of a thicker guy? And since when does height determine whether a player can take a hit? By the way, my sixth sense tells me that a whole lot of dyed-in-the-wool Southern football writers (let alone fans and coaches of teams other than Florida) are hoping that outsider Urban Meyer will fail in Gainesville.
4. By the same token, Barnhart throws Phil Fulmer a bone by not asking the question any sane Vol fan is asking - will our wretched pass defense be better? - and instead posing the straw man of "who will block for Gerald Riggs?", which lets Fulmer and Barnhart gush about Tennessee's offensive line. There'll a "native vs. transplant" thing going on on September 17 if my attempts to read between the lines in Barnhart's writing are correct.