Originally created 09/30/03

Tuesday morning quarterback



A look back and ahead in the ACC, SEC and elsewhere:

WHO'S HOT

Washington State. The Cougars' 55-16 win at Oregon might have been the most astounding score of the season.

WHO'S NOT

Alabama. The Crimson Tide is 2-3 heading into their first road trip of the season Saturday at Georgia. It ain't rolling, baby.

STAT OF THE WEEK

Texas Tech quarterback B.J. Symons threw for 661 yards and six touchdowns in the Raiders' 49-45 win at Mississippi.

RANKING THE BIG FOUR

1. Georgia (3-1, 1-1 SEC) ... The Bulldogs are more than man enough to beat Alabama on Saturday.

2. South Carolina (3-2, 0-2 SEC) ... Tennessee's Dustin Colquitt showed the Gamecocks how valuable a great punter can be.

3. Clemson (3-1, 1-0 ACC) ... The Tigers had to be encouraged by Maryland's not-so-encouraging win over Eastern Michigan.

4. Georgia Tech (2-3, 0-2 ACC) ... N.C. State's offense has a lot of the same characteristics as Clemson's. That's not good for the Yellow Jackets.

RANKING THE POWER CONFERENCES

1. Big 12 ... Nebraska's defense is brutally good.

2. SEC ... Tennessee's offense needs an identity.

3. Big Ten ... First-year coach John L. Smith is riding high at Michigan State.

4. Pac-10 ... Southern Cal got pushed around by Cal.

5. Big East ... Pittsburgh receiver Larry Fitzgerald is fun to watch.

6. ACC ... Let's just say we - along with plenty of other observers - slightly overrated this league before the season.

RANKING THE SEC, TOP AND BOTTOM

1. LSU ... The Tigers suffered no letdown at Mississippi State.

12. Mississippi State ... At least Vanderbilt is able to keep things close.

RANKING THE ACC, TOP AND BOTTOM

1. Florida State ... We'll see how good the Seminoles are Oct. 11 against Miami.

9. North Carolina ... Quarterback Darian Durant needs some help from his friends.

VIEW FROM THE SIDELINES

"Sometimes you win a game like that where you are outplayed." - Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer, after Saturday's 23-20 overtime win over South Carolina.

WHAT'S NEXT

On Saturday, Georgia hosts Alabama at 3:30 p.m.; Georgia Tech hosts North Carolina State at noon; and Clemson plays at Maryland at 3:30 p.m. South Carolina is off until its Oct. 9 game against Kentucky in Columbia.

THIS WEEK'S BIG STORY LINE

After having a week off to recuperate from a disappointing 17-10 loss at Louisiana State, Georgia resumes with Alabama at Sanford Stadium. Saturday's game, coupled with a Oct. 11 trip to Tennessee, will play a big role in determining whether the Bulldogs win the SEC East for the second-straight season.

-Larry Williams