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SEC Football Power Poll: Week 3

1. LSU (2-0, 0-0 SEC, 1st last week): The Tigers rolled to a 49-3 victory over in-state FCS opponent Northwestern State last Saturday. The defense was dominant, holding the Demons to negative yards rushing and only 95 yards total. Sophomore running backs Michael Ford and Spencer Ware combined for four rushing touchdowns, while both senior Jarrett Lee and sophomore Zach Mettenberger took snaps at quarterback. The Tigers have defeated the Bulldogs of Mississippi State 11 straight times and 18 of the last 19.
This week: Mississippi State (1-1, 0-1 SEC), 7 p.m., ESPN (Thursday)

2. Alabama (2-0, 0-0 SEC, 2nd last week): Sophomore AJ McCarron got the start and played the whole game at quarterback, while junior running back Trent Richardson bounced back with 111 yards and two touchdowns on 26 carries last Saturday. After an early Penn State field goal, a fake punt sparked the go-ahead touchdown late in the first quarter and the Crimson Tide went on to win 27-11 in Happy Valley. A showdown with Arkansas looms on Saturday Sept. 24.
This week: North Texas (0-2), 6:30 p.m., Fox Sports Net

3. Arkansas (2-0, 0-0 SEC, 3rd last week): The Razorbacks stepped up in competition and routed New Mexico 52-3 last Saturday. Junior quarterback Tyler Wilson continues to impress, completing 18 of 26 passes for 259 yards and a touchdown. Sophomore quarterback Brandon Mitchell entered the game in the second half and adds a dual-threat ability in the absence of Knile Davis. Both Wilson and Mitchell had rushing touchdown, while junior Ronnie Wingo Jr. led the team with 73 yards on 12 carries and freshman Kody Walker added two touchdowns on the ground.
This week: Troy (0-1), 6:30 p.m., CSS

4. South Carolina (2-0, 1-0 SEC, 4th last week): Big plays in the kicking game and on defense was the difference in this past Saturday’s back-and-forth 45-42 win at Georgia. Senior defensive end Melvin Ingram had a 68-yard touchdown run on a fake punt and a 5-yard fumble recovery for a touchdown. Also on defense, senior Antonio Allen had a 25-yard interception return for a touchdown and junior cornerback Stephon Gilmore set up another score with a 56-yard fumble return. Sophomore running back Marcus Lattimore answered the bell on offense with 176 yards and a touchdown on 27 carries.
This week: Navy (2-0), 5:00 p.m., ESPN2

5. Florida (2-0, 0-0 SEC, 5th last week): Four different players rushed for touchdowns as the Gators shutout the Blazers of UAB 39-0 last Saturday. Senior running back Chris Rainey led the way with 119 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries and added three receptions for 43 yards. Senior quarterback John Brantley was an efficient 12-for-19 passing for 195 yards and sophomore Trey Burton got some quarterback snaps in the wildcat. Florida hosts Tennessee and should answer questions about both teams and the SEC East hierarchy.
This week: Tennessee (2-0), 2:30 p.m., CBS

6. Auburn (2-0, 1-0 SEC, 8th last week): Auburn keeps finding ways to win, holding on for a 41-34 win over Mississippi State last Saturday. The Tigers have the nation’s longest winning streak at 17 games and have also won 10 straight games decided by eight points or less. The defense gave up 531 total yards, but stonewalled the Bulldogs at the goal line in the closing seconds. Junior Barrett Trotter threw for 146 yards and two touchdowns and sophomore Michael Dyer ran for 150 yards and two touchdowns to lead the offense.
This week: at Clemson (2-0), 11:00 a.m., ABC

7. Mississippi State (1-1, 0-1 SEC, 6th last week): The Bulldogs came up a yard short on three separate plays of tying the game in the closing moments of this past Saturday’s 41-34 loss at Auburn. Senior running back Vick Ballard was pushed out at the one-yard line after a seven-yard run. Ballard was then tackled for a one-yard loss and then senior quarterback Chris Relf was stopped just short of the goal line on an option keeper as time expired. Ballard had 135 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries. Relf threw for 195 yards and a touchdown through the air and added 106 yards on the ground.
This week: at LSU (2-0), 7 p.m., ESPN (Thursday)

8. Tennessee (2-0, 0-0 SEC, 7th last week): Sophomore quarterback Tyler Bray threw for a career-high 405 yards to lead the Volunteers to a 45-23 win over Cincinnati. Bray completed 34 of 41 passes, threw for four touchdowns and accounted for another score on the ground. Sophomore receivers Justin Hunter and Da’Rick Rogers finished with 100 yards or more receiving and a touchdown catch for the second straight week.
This week: at Florida (2-0), 2:30 p.m., CBS

9. Georgia (0-2, 0-1 SEC, 9th last week): Sophomore quarterback Aaron Murray had a big game, throwing for 248 yards and four touchdowns on 19-for-29 passing, but the Bulldogs made too many mistake in a 45-42 home loss to South Carolina. Freshman running back Isaih Crowell also had 118 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries in the loss. The Bulldogs are arguably the best 0-2 team in the country, but head coach Mark Richt, his coaching staff and players are looking for answers to turn the season around amid swirling dissension from fans and media.
This week: Coastal Carolina (2-0), 12:00 p.m., Pay-Per-View

10. Vanderbilt (2-0, 0-0 SEC, 11th last week): The Commodores rallied from 21-14 down in the fourth quarter to defeat Connecticut 24-21 last Saturday. Senior cornerback Casey Heyward made the big play with a game-tying, 50-yard interception return. The defense forced four turnovers in all and held the Huskies to 193 total yards. Freshman Jerron Seymour had a big 40-yard touchdown run early in the game and led the rushing attack with 70 yards on eight carries. The victory gave the Commodores their first winning streak since 2008.
This week: Ole Miss (1-1), 11:21 a.m., SEC Network

11. Ole Miss (1-1, 0-0 SEC, 10th last week): Sophomore running back Jeff Scott was the story of the game, rushing for three touchdowns, returning a punt for another and accounting for more than 200 total yards in a 42-24 win over Southern Illinois. Junior quarterback Zack Stoudt got the start, but junior Randall Mackey also took some snaps, and both are expected to play Saturday at Vanderbilt. The defense forced four turnovers - all interceptions - but gave up 420 yards of total offense to the Salukis.
This week: at Vanderbilt (2-0), 11:21 a.m., SEC Network

12. Kentucky (2-0, 0-0 SEC, 12th last week): The Wildcats trailed the Chippewas of Central Michigan 13-6 at halftime, but managed to make some plays on offense to stave off disaster and win 27-13. Freshman running back Josh Clemons made the play of the game, going 87 yards for the go-ahead touchdown in the third quarter. Junior quarterback Morgan Newton continues to struggle as he completed 9 of 18 passes for 114 yards and a touchdown.
This week: Louisville (1-1), 6 p.m., ESPNU