Three to watch
Furman at South Carolina, noon (SEC Network)
This is the Gamecocks’ final nonconference game before three straight league games and a regular-season finale against Clemson. South Carolina (3-3) doesn’t figure to have much trouble with the Southern Conference’s Paladins (2-4), who have lost four straight.
No. 21 Texas A&M at No. 7 Alabama, 3:30 p.m. (CBS, WBTV, ch. 3)
Alabama’s 23-17 loss against Mississippi and a 14-13 victory over Arkansas last week are the first time the Crimson Tide (5-1, 2-1) has scored 17 or fewer points in back-to-back games since 2007, coach Nick Saban’s first season. The Aggies (5-2, 2-2) have lost two straight and haven’t lost three in a row in three seasons.
Tennessee at No. 3 Mississippi, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
The Rebels (6-0, 3-0) are unbeaten through six games for the first time since 1962, when they went 10-0. The Volunteers (3-3, 0-2) are playing excellent defense, allowing 19.2 points and 316.3 yards per game.
• No Todd Gurley for Georgia again Saturday when the Bulldogs play at Arkansas. School officials continue to investigate allegations that Gurley, who was suspended Oct. 9, was paid for signing memorabilia. He’s continued to practice with the team, however.
• With Gurley pretty much out of the picture, Mississippi State’s Dak Prescott is probably the frontrunner in the Heisman Trophy race now. Being the quarterback on the country’s top-ranked team does wonders for your chances. The Bulldogs are off Saturday.
• It’s been a difficult couple of weeks for Louisiana State, which is host to Kentucky. The Tigers (5-2, 1-2) got their first SEC victory last week (barely) against Florida 30-27 and are host to improving Kentucky (5-2, 2-1) Saturday.
• SEC Commissioner Mike Slive announced his retirement earlier this week. His legacy: spearheading the emergence of college football’s dominant conference, along with playing a key part in the formation of the playoff, which makes its debut this season. Always a gentleman (at least to me in my limited dealings with him), as well.
Number to know
22 Yards receiving last week against Arkansas for Alabama’s Amari Cooper, who had been averaging 149.2 yards.