Friday, June 12, 2015

Top 5 SEC College Football Games of the 2014 Season

When it comes to SEC football, there are many opinions to be had. Those down south love the SEC and show up every Saturday to support their respective school. The rest of the country? Well they just about hate the SEC and think it is super overrated. This year, SEC haters really got to talk as the conference went 7-5 in its bowl games.

Despite a poor showing in the postseason, the SEC still ranks as potentially the best conference in college football (and perhaps all of collegiate athletics) as it had a wild slate of games throughout the season. Looking back on last season, I thought it would be interesting to give my Top 5 SEC college football games of 2014! So without further adieu, let's take a trip down memory lane!

5) LSU vs Florida (LSU 30-27)
Image result for tevin westbrook

The Swamp was rocking as the LSU Tigers came into town to take on the Florida Gators in a night game. I remember being at this game and being so excited to watch LSU's sensational freshman running back Leonard Fournette play in person! He did not disappoint as he ran for two touchdowns and 140 yards! He was spinning, jumping, and running guys over. It was a real treat to watch!

The game itself was a back and forth affair. I recall Andre Debose running a punt back to send the Swamp into an ABSOLUTE frenzy! I lost my hearing for a few seconds after he crossed the plane to score because it was so loud.

The game remained close going into the fourth quarter as the Gators and Tigers battled down to the wire. After LSU scored with less than three minutes in the game, Florida QB Jeff Driskel responded with a deep ball to wideout Demarcus Robinson to put the Gators on LSU's one-yard-line!

After being stuffed twice on first and second down, the Gators went to the air on third and goal. Driskel rolled out and threw it to a wide open Tevin Westbrook. Only problem was that Westbrook could not catch and dropped the ball. The Gators had to settle with a field goal for the tie.

After getting the ball back with less than a minute left in the game, Driskel got the Gators to the LSU 40-yard-line before throwing an interception on a slant route. LSU would run the ball back to Florida's 36 and set up the eventual game-winning field goal.

This game did not impact much on the national level as Florida had no chance of winning last year and LSU was mediocre as well. However, this game did contribute to the firing of Florida head coach Will Muschamp and could be a game that saved the future of the Florida program when fans look back in a few years.

4) #3 Ole Miss vs #24 LSU (LSU 10-7)
Image result for ronald martin interception ole miss

Two weeks after defeating Florida, #24 LSU returned home to face an undefeated Ole Miss team who sat at #3 in the polls. It was a complete defensive battle as Death Valley got in the head of Ole Miss QB Bo Wallace, whose final QBR at the end of the game would be 27.7.

LSU was down 7-3 for most of the game before breaking through with a touchdown with just over five minutes to play. But Ole Miss would not go down quietly and was mounting a final drive with less than 30 seconds in the game. With the ball on the LSU 25-yard-line, nine seconds remaining, and no timeouts left, Ole Miss decided to attempt a field goal for the tie on third down.

After LSU called a timeout to ice Ole Miss's kicker, the Rebels decided to cut their losses and send the offense back out on the field. Bo Wallace took the snap and rolled out to his left. He threw the ball down the sideline, and LSU safety Ronald Martin intercepted the ball in front of the end zone to clinch the upset over their rival.

This loss did not ruin Ole Miss's season up to that point as they fell just one spot in the polls. But in the race for the SEC West, Alabama, Mississippi State, and Auburn were closing the gap.

3) #3 Auburn vs #4 Ole Miss (AUB 35-31)
Image result for laquon treadwell injury

Right after losing a heartbreaker to LSU, #4 Ole Miss returned home to take on a fellow one-loss team in the #3 Auburn Tigers. This was a de facto playoff game as the loser would be virtually eliminated from SEC West contention.

The Tigers and Rebels exchanged the lead throughout the night and Ole Miss again found themselves driving downfield late in the game as they trailed by four. On third down and three, QB Bo Wallace hit star receiver Laquon Treadwell on a screen pass.

With Auburn sending the bulk of its defense in a blitz, Treadwell took off for the end zone. He was flagged down from behind at the one-yard line and extended the ball to try and score. Treadwell fumbled the ball on his way down and it was recovered by Auburn. After the play, Treadwell lied motionless near the goal line. He had broken his ankle after being tackled.

The result of the play was initially a touchdown and it was indeed reviewed to see if Treadwell had crossed the plane before fumbling. He did not. The ruling was that he had fumbled at the one-yard line and Auburn had recovered in the end zone. Auburn would go on to close out the game and keep their SEC West hopes alive. As for Ole Miss, a second consecutive loss ended their SEC West run and their hopes of making the College Football Playoff. They also lost Laquon Treadwell for the entire season.

2) Texas A&M vs #3 Auburn (TAMU 41-38)

Image result for tamu auburn fumble

Amazingly, this list still somehow goes in chronological order as #3 Auburn returned home to take on a struggling Texas A&M. TAMU was supposed to have no chance coming into the game with true freshman Kyle Allen as the starter. A true freshman trying to win in Jordan O'Hare? Forget about it!

But Allen was unfazed by the hostile Auburn crowd as he threw four touchdowns for 277 yards and just one pick! He finished with a QBR of 76.7!  In addition to a spectacular game from Allen, the Aggies were blessed with two Auburn blunders late in the fourth quarter.

The first one came when Auburn QB Nick Marshall fumbled on second and goal from the two-yard line. Somehow, TAMU was able to recover and put themselves in a position to run out the clock. After failing to do so, TAMU gave it back to Auburn for one final drive. The Tigers were moving the ball downfield and looking to avoid the upset until a miscommunication between Nick Marshall and center Reese Dismukes led to a botched snap. Once again, the Aggies jumped on the fumble and put #3 Auburn away for good.

Auburn's SEC West hopes would end after this crushing loss at home. For Texas A&M, this improbable upset shined a bright spot on what had been a very mediocre season thus far.

1) #5 Alabama vs #16 LSU (ALA 20-13 in OT)
Image result for lsu alabama 2014

Taking the top spot on my list is the duel between rivals #5 Alabama and #16 LSU in Death Valley. It was a heavy defensive battle with the score 13-13 at the end of regulation. The last minute alone contained enough excitement to suffice for the first three quarters! LSU nailed a go-ahead field goal with less than a minute left, only to see Alabama drive down the field in 50 seconds and kick the equalizer to force overtime.

In overtime, Alabama scored first on a fade route to go up by seven. LSU chose to abandon the run game and threw on three straight incomplete passes to open up their possession. Now on fourth and ten, LSU had to go to the air again. Sophomore QB Anthony Jennings rolled out to his left and threw the ball up towards receiver Malachi Dupre in the back corner of the end zone.

Two 'Bama defenders were there to knock the ball away and seal the victory for the Tide. There was a good amount of contact between the defenders and Dupre, prompting many LSU players and fans to call for a defensive pass interference penalty. But there was no flag. The game was over and Alabama had beaten LSU for the fourth consecutive time.

LSU's SEC West dreams had now been officially gashed while Alabama kept on rollin with a big home matchup vs #1 Mississippi State looming in the next week.

Honorable Mention:
#3 Alabama vs #11 Ole Miss (MISS 23-17), Kentucky vs Florida (FLA 36-30 in 3OT),
#6 Georgia vs #24 South Carolina (SCAR 38-35)

I hope you enjoyed this Top 5 article! It was cool to go back and relive some of the defining moments of the 2014 SEC season that impacted teams for better or worse. Seeing as this now may be a new project of mine, I'll be working on my next article ranking the Top 5 ACC games of 2014! Until then, be on the lookout for my Gator baseball recap article after they play the Miami Hurricanes tomorrow in Omaha!

*All stats accredited to

*All photos accredited to,,,, &

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.