Chat with Chris Low
Welcome to SportsNation! On Monday, ESPN.com's SEC blogger Chris Low will stop by to talk some college football.
Low joined ESPN.com in 2007 after 10 years with The (Nashville) Tennessean covering the University of Tennessee and SEC. The Rock Hill, S.C., native lives with his wife in Knoxville and has three sons.
Send your questions now and join Low Monday at 1 p.m. ET!
Chris Low (1:01 PM)
What a week coming up in the SEC. We find out a lot this Saturday.
Matthew (Raleigh, NC)
Chris, thanks for the weekly chat! I always look forward to it.Any rumblings or rumors out of Gainesville on Tebow's status? The Vegas oddsmakers have already put their line on the game, leading me to believe there might be something out there that just isnt getting published/written. Your thoughts?
Chris Low (1:03 PM)
Honestly, nobody knows, not even the Florida coaches. And they might not know until later this week. He still hasn't been cleared and won't practice today. If he continues to have any symptoms from the concussion, he won't play. No doctor will clear him for contact if there are still some lingering things from his concussion.
How come there is no talk of Alabama QB Greg McElroy in the Heisman talk. He is a great QB through the air and also a great game manager. I feel he is being cheated just because we have a good ground game and we dont run the score up on people.
Chris Low (1:04 PM)
To me, McElroy is in the running for SEC MVP honors five games into the season with the way he's run that offense, spread the ball around and played virtually error-free football.
Chris,Does LSU have a better chance to win against a Gator team with a QB who has little experience but 2 weeks to prepare, or against Tebow not practicing for 2 weeks and coming off a consussion? I see legit arguments on both sides.
Chris Low (1:06 PM)
As a defensive coordinator, I'd always prefer not to face Tebow. If he's on the field, you know he's going to give you fits on all the key downs and is such a force on third down, regardless of how little he's practiced. No, I'd rather take my chances with Brantley, even thought he can really throw it.
Jeremy (Cambridge, MA)
Chris,Much has been made of the excessive celebration penalty at the end of LSU-UGA this weekend. What seems to be continually overlooked is that the UGA defense could not stop LSU from marching down the field, no matter where the drive began. Once C. Scott broke free on his long run, would anyone have even caught him? Couldn't the only difference be that we would be discussing Scott's 48yd run instead of 33? Instead of blaming the refs, maybe UGA should look at how LSU closed out the game after their own celebration penalty... by killing the drive with an interception.
Chris Low (1:09 PM)
You're right. Ultimately, it's up to Georgia to stop LSU there and on the previous drive. That said, the excessive celebration penalty is a dumb penalty. It has nothing to do with the game and is way too subjective. If a player is taunting another play, sure, go ahead and throw it then. But I didn't see that A.J Green did that. Again, get rid of the penalty.
Dan (Dallas, TX)
Too soon to start drinking the Auburn Kool Aid?
Chris Low (1:10 PM)
Nah, I'm drinking it. I love the job Gene Chizik and his staff have done. He's a no-frills guy who just went in and coached his butt off.
Chad (Las Vegas)
Brantley can throw the ball, but WHO does he have to throw too?
Chris Low (1:12 PM)
Good question. The Gators need Deonte Thompson in the worst way this week. He missed the last two games with a hamstring injury, but should be better with the extra week. I'd look for the Gators to do even more with Brandon James on offense this week, too.
Bama is certainly the favorite against Ole Miss, but would you agree that a great performance by Snead (like he had against FL, LSU, and TX Tech in '08) gives Ole Miss a better than average chance to win Saturday?
Chris Low (1:14 PM)
Absolutely. If Snead plays the way he ended the season a year ago, the Rebels will be right there in that game. They're playing well on defense and have the front seven to give Alabama trouble. I think it comes down to being able to protect Snead, his being able to take care of the ball and make some plays down the field to soften up that Tide defense.
Lane Kiffin (Knoxville)
Dear Chris,What are the chances I get my SEC win in October? The schedule is looking pretty dismal with Georgia, Bama and South Carolina. Love, Lane
Chris Low (1:15 PM)
Lane, if you're going to get one, I think you better get it this week against Georgia. By the way, what's up with that special teams play?
Rob (New Orleans)
Chris, we all know in college football on any given Saturday, anything can happen, but can LSU really beat Florida? They've just looked so average, at best, and the QB play has been at times, terrible. Thanks Chris.
Chris Low (1:18 PM)
I wouldn't call the quarterback play terrible. Jordan Jefferson is coming along and showed a lot of poise in those final two possessions at Georgia. LSU will have to play the best games it's played this season to win this weekend, but the Tigers certainly have the talent to do it and Saturday night in Tiger Stadium is never a fun place to be for the opponent.
Kristin (West Melbourne, FL)
Is there any chance the SEC champ doesn't go to the NC?
Chris Low (1:19 PM)
At this point, I'd be very surprised if the winner of the SEC Championship Game didn't go to the BCS title game, especially with USC having already lost.
Chad (Las Vegas)
Say LSU beat UF but then loses to Bama and finishes 11-1. What bowl would they then project at BCS Champ game or Sugar?
Chris Low (1:22 PM)
If everything fell right, LSU could still be in the running for the BCS National Championship Game. The Tigers would need Alabama to lose two games in that scenario, and I don't see that happening. Either way, an 11-1 LSU team with a win over Florida would be a virtual lock for some BCS bowl game.
Does uga have any chance of making a good bowl game?
Chris Low (1:24 PM)
Depends on what your definition of a good bowl game is. The Bulldogs can forget about a BCS bowl. Right now, I'd say maybe the Outback or Chick-fil-A would be the best the Bulldogs could do.
Now that every SEC team the Hogs face is ranked, what are the odds of Arkansas being able to get a "W" vs. Auburn and turn in a winning season? How great is it to see Arkansas with a real QB in Ryan Mallet?!?!?!?
Chris Low (1:26 PM)
Well, if the Hogs play defense the way they did against Texas A&M, I think they have a decent shot to end Auburn's unbeaten run. If you look down Arkansas' schedule, this is really a game the Hogs almost have to win if they're going to finish with a winning regular season.
Zach (Manchster, NH)
How much of Auburn success is due to Gene Chizik verses how much is due to Gus Malzahn?
Chris Low (1:27 PM)
Both deserve a lot of credit. Give Chizik props for going out and hiring Malzahn. But there's no doubt that Malzahn has made that offense one of those attacks defensive coordinators hate preparing for.
Chad (Las Vegas)
What is the drop dead date for Tebow to play vs LSU? Does he have to practice/be cleared by Wed or if the docs cleared him on Friday would Meyer still start him?
Chris Low (1:29 PM)
Meyer has said that Tebow could not practice all week and still play. Even for a guy like Tebow, that's hard to do when you haven't done anything for two weeks. I think Florida will know one way or the other by Thursday morning at the latest if he's going to play.
Hey, we all know Auburn's offense can score, but, can the Auburn D, stop Ryan Mallet this week in Fayetteville?
Chris Low (1:31 PM)
That game has shootout written all over it. Auburn's defense played better for the first three quarters against Tennessee, but Arkansas' offense is far more explosive than Tennessee's. Turnovers will play a big part in this game, because I think both offenses will move the ball and score points.
Michael (San Antonio, Tx)
If you were Crowton vs that Florida D, how would you game plan this week? It is hard to find a chink in their armor. GEAUX TIGERS!
Chris Low (1:34 PM)
The first thing you want to do is keep the football, which is where Charles Scott and the LSU o-line come in. Shorten the game some and take your shots down the field to LaFell and Toliver.
Vitor (Dania Beach)
Right now, who are the top 5 in the running for SEC player of the year?
Chris Low (1:36 PM)
In no order, Greg McElroy, Chris Todd, Tim Tebow, Eric Norwood and A.J. Green. ... Eric Berry's a great player, but he's not going to get a lot of love if the Vols don't start winning some games.
Should Kiffin bench Crompton? This season isn't going to be any more than a lower-tier bowl, so if they won't take his leash off, why not start playing for next year?
Chris Low (1:37 PM)
I don't think he should bench Crompton, but I do think he should at least see what Nick Stephens can do in a game.
Chris, love your work. How good is Notre Dame? I know you are an SEC guy, but please give me your perspective on this issue.
Chris Low (1:39 PM)
Still maybe a year away. Jimmy Clausen has made a huge difference at quarterback. I think the team speed is better, and the Irish have more playmakers on the perimeter. They still need to get better on defense.
Mark (South Carolina)
This weekend's game b/n SC and Kentucky looks like the epitome of a trap game for SC. Any chance kentucky could pull the upset in Williams Bryce?
Chris Low (1:41 PM)
You're right. It is a trap game for the Gamecocks with the Alabama game looming on the horizon. But for whatever reason, South Carolina has owned Kentucky. You talk about screwing up a promising season. If the Gamecocks lose this one, I'm buying into the Chicken Curse lock, stock and barrel.
Chris having Alabama ahead of Florida is a joke!!! I watched the Gators play Kentucky and Watched the Tide Play Kentucky and it was obvious which team was better!! Look at the stats!! Kentucky was never in the game against the Gators!!!
Chris Low (1:43 PM)
I don't compare scores when ranking the teams. I compare teams, and Alabama has been the more complete team to this point and faced beter competition. This may change down the road. But five games in, I'd take the Crimson Tide.
Chris what do you see as the key to Ole Miss winning against Bama. Is it Ole Miss' defense finding a way to stop Jones and McElroy? Or is it Ole Miss finally getting the offense going for 4 quarters? Obviously, both will be needed, but which is more critical? Thanks for the response.
Chris Low (1:44 PM)
As I said earlier, for Ole Miss to win this game, the Rebels have to have Jevan Snead playing like the Jevan Snead that ended last season. Nobody's going to beat Alabama just running the ball. That's where Snead comes in. He's good at avoiding pressure and making plays down the field and will have to do a lot of that Saturday.
Steve Spurrier (South Carolina)
Chris, I am not looking past this weeks game with Kentucky, but where do you think my Gamecocks stand in the SEC East?
Chris Low (1:46 PM)
Steve, I think you're pretty close with Georgia for the second spot in the East right now. Bet you wish Garcia would have kept that ball on fourth down against the Bulldogs, huh? But anyway ...
thomas (los angeles)
assuming the winner of the sec gets one of the spots in the bcs championship game, and assuming all the other major programs have one loss, do you think the voters will put usc in the championship game because that's the game everyone wants to see? how would you vote?
Chris Low (1:49 PM)
In that scenario, I would think USC would have a good shot. A lot would depend on Texas and who the Longhorns lost to and when they lost. If Virginia Tech runs the table and wins the ACC title, the Hokies could be a player, especially if Alabama runs the table. Those teams played a close game to open the season. But I'd love to see USC and the SEC champ go at it for the title. That matchup is long overdue.
Is Onterrio McCalebb from Auburn a lock for SEC Rookie of the Year?
Chris Low (1:55 PM)
He's the front-runner and doing it as a running back and return specialist. I'd watch Alabama's Trent Richardson the second half of the season, too, and South Carolina cornerback Stephon Gilmore also deserves some mention along with Mississippi State receiver Chad Bumphis and Vanderbilt running back Warren Norman.
MR. Low do you think LSU is still overrated?
Chris Low (1:57 PM)
Yes, a little bit, although that was a gutsy win at Georgia. I still don't think the Tigers are playing their best football. But they're winning, and that's all that counts.
Chris, do you think Auburn has any chance of winning the West?
Chris Low (1:59 PM)
Listen, if the Tigers win this weekend at Arkansas and then come back home and take care of business against Kentucky to get to 7-0, they absolutely would be right there. I still don't think they're deep enough to do it, but they're going to factor into the race for sure.
You have Chris Todd in the running for SEC Player of the year, what about Ben Tate? Where does he sit for you if you were ranking the SEC's running backs?
Chris Low (2:01 PM)
Tate, Alabama's Mark Ingram and Tennessee's Montario Hardesty have been three of the most impressive backs I've seen so far in the SEC.
Chris Low (2:02 PM)
All right, we count it down to Showdown Saturday in the SEC. Thanks for the questions.