A look at things to watch in the Southeastern Conference during Week 3 of the season:
GAME OF THE WEEK: No. 6 Georgia at No. 24 South Carolina: Two of the nation's elite running backs — Todd Gurley (Georgia) and Mike Davis (South Carolina) — meet in Columbia on Saturday. The Bulldogs looked impressive during their opening-week victory over Clemson and had last weekend off to prepare. The Gamecocks were embarrassed in their season-opening loss to Texas A&M, but bounced back with a 33-23 victory against East Carolina and could jump right back into the league-title conversation with a big home win.
MATCHUP OF THE WEEK: Oklahoma WR Sterling Shepard vs. Tennessee CB Cam Sutton: We're working on the assumption that Oklahoma's top receiver and Tennessee's best cover corner will be lining up against each other much of the night. Shepard had eight catches for 177 yards and a touchdown Saturday in a 52-7 blowout of Tulsa. Sutton, who started all 12 games for Tennessee as a freshman last season, has eight tackles and an interception this year. "''He is a definitely a complete receiver," Sutton said. Shepard "has a knack for the ball, plays well with the ball in the air. Just as a secondary, we have to do a good job containing him."
INSIDE THE NUMBERS: Florida has beaten Kentucky 27 consecutive times, which represents the longest active winning streak over a major opponent in an annual series. The record in this category is Notre Dame's 43-game winning streak over Navy that ran from 1964-2006. The only other longer streaks were Nebraska's 36 consecutive victories over Kansas from 1969-2004, Oklahoma's 32 straight wins over Kansas State from 1937-68, Nebraska's 29 consecutive triumphs over Kansas State from 1969-97 and Texas' 28 straight wins over Rice from 1966-93. ... Florida's 65-0 shutout of Eastern Michigan represented its largest margin of victory since an 82-6 blowout of Central Michigan in 1997. Florida never scored more than 31 points during its 4-8 season last year.
LONG SHOT: UMass is a 17-point underdog this weekend at Vanderbilt, but the Commodores have an unsettled quarterback situation and were thumped by Temple and Mississippi during the first two weeks. ... Mississippi State goes on the road for a tricky game against a veteran South Alabama team that's expected to compete in the Sun Belt this season. The Bulldogs had some issues in the secondary last week during a 47-34 victory over UAB.
IMPACT PLAYER: Alabama's Amari Cooper has been the most prolific receiver in the nation through the first two weeks. Cooper leads all Football Bowl Subdivision players in both receptions (25) and receiving yards (319). The 6-foot-1, 210-pound junior will be a matchup nightmare for Southern Mississippi this weekend and should continue to have a big season throughout SEC play after struggling with nagging injuries as a sophomore.
Compiled by David Brandt in Jackson, Mississippi, and Steve Megargee in Knoxville, Tennessee
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