THE SEC REPORT

The SEC Report: A&M wins, Alabama triumphs but falls in polls and LSU is the real winner of the weekend

Ed Orgeron
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Born with a comic book in one hand and a remote control in the other, Cory DLG is the talent of Conroe's very own Nerd Thug Radio and Sports. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio show at www.nerdthugradio.com!

LAST WEEKEND

Texas A&M held up against Mississippi State in spite of their defense. Alabama thinks they have a quarterback after they drummed Arkansas for 235 yards and three touchdowns and LSU jumped over Alabama into the number #1 position on the country after beating Auburn in a close game. It's a little odd that LSU jumped over Alabama after closely beating an Auburn that only barely beat A&M but hey, they have to play Alabama next weekend so we'll see who deserves what then.

THE THREE STARS OF LAST WEEKEND

Lynn Bowden Jr, running back of Kentucky, had himself a day with 204 yards and two touchdowns on 21 carries against a Missouri team that was, until recently, in the pole position for their division for the SEC championship game.

Kellen Mond, Quarterback of Texas A&M, in a game they basically had to have he came out and slung it for 234 yards and put three touchdowns on the scoreboard. A&M's season hangs in the balance and it will take great poise and a solid quarterback.

Clyde Edwards-Helaire, running back of LSU, on 26 carries he got 136 yards and a touchdown in a game where they needed every yard and every point. It must be thankless to be the starting running back of a team with a potential Heisman winning quarterback on it, because you won't get a lot of love nationally.

THIS WEEKEND

So we live in a world where I correctly predicted last week that LSU would leapfrog Alabama with a win, I just thought it would be a clear win and it wasn't. This week both Alabama and LSU are off as they prepare for their must see game next weekend but this week everyone needs to be watching Georgia coming to Gainesville in a game that desperately matters to the SEC championship game. Also Texas A&M hosts UTSA in a game that while not SEC relevant matters to Aggies, and Ole Miss comes to Auburn who really needs a win.

THREE PLAYERS TO WATCH THIS WEEKEND

Kyle Trask, quarterback of Florida. Florida is in a position to get to the SEC championship game by just playing winning football. All they have to do is keep playing good football and usually the quarterback is directly responsible for this.

D'Andre Swift, running back of Georgia. This is the big game this week. Numbers 1 and 2 of the SEC East are playing in a game that is likely to decide one of the two teams that plays in the SEC championship game so the star running back may want to step up.

Bo Nix, quarterback of Auburn. This is likely the last time his name appears on the list because if Bo doesn't win the rest of their season doesn't matter in the big picture. They need the freshman to find his mojo and quick or what started off as a great year may wind up being the year that broke Bo.

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Astros lose to Braves, 6-2. Composite Getty Image.

Reynaldo López struck out seven over six scoreless innings, Orlando Arcia homered and the Atlanta Braves won their third straight, 6-2 over the Houston Astros on Tuesday night.

López (2-0) allowed four hits and walked one in his third straight sterling outing to start the season.

“It’s like I’ve always said, for me, the important thing is to focus,” López said through an interpreter. “To have the focus during the outings and then, to be able to locate those pitches.”

He has given up one run in 18 innings for an ERA of 0.50.

“He threw the ball really well against a really good hitting club,” Atlanta manager Brian Snitker said. “Another solid one.”

Arcia hit a solo home run to left in the second and a sacrifice fly in the seventh.

Luis Guillorme and backup catcher Chadwick Tromp each hit a two-run double in the ninth to put the Braves ahead 6-0.

“Tromp has done a good job ever since we’ve been bringing him in these situations and filling in,” Snitker said. “I’ve got all the confidence in the world in him back there. ... He’s an aggressive hitter. He’s knocked in some big runs for us in the limited time that he’s played.”

Kyle Tucker homered for the Astros leading off the ninth against Aaron Bummer, and Mauricio Dubón had a two-out RBI single to cut the lead to four. After Bummer walked Chas McCormick to put two on, Raisel Iglesias induced a groundout by Victor Caratini to end it and secure his fourth save.

“They pitched well, and our guys are grinding out at-bats,” Houston manager Joe Espada said. “Even in the ninth inning there, we’re grinding, fighting until the end.”

Hunter Brown (0-3) yielded two runs on five hits with three strikeouts and three walks in six innings. Brown allowed nine runs in two-thirds of an inning in his previous start, last Thursday against Kansas City.

Brown said he executed better Tuesday than he had in his previous two starts.

“He mixed all his pitches well,” Espada said. “The breaking ball was effective. He threw some cutters in on the hands to some of those lefties. He mixed his pitches really well. That was a really strong performance.”

TRAINER’S ROOM

Braves: 2B Ozzie Albies was placed on the 10-day injured list with a broken right big toe. IF David Fletcher had his contract selected from Triple-A Gwinnett to take Albies’ place on the roster.

Astros: RHP Justin Verlander (right shoulder inflammation) threw a side session Tuesday, but Houston will wait until Wednesday to see how Verlander feels before deciding whether he will make his first start this weekend against the Nationals, Espada said. ... RHP Luis Garcia (right elbow surgery) threw around 20-25 pitches off the bullpen mound, and RHP José Urquidy (right forearm strain) also threw off the mound, Espada said. ... LHP Framber Valdez (left elbow soreness) played catch off flat ground.

UP NEXT

Atlanta LHP Max Fried (1-0, 8.74 ERA) starts Wednesday in the series finale opposite RHP J.P. France (0-2, 8.22).

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