Each Saturday, we like to examine our preseason prediction for that day's game and then stick with it.
Two months ago, we predicted Vandy would lose 27-20 to South Carolina.
Vandy's going to be just what the doctor ordered for the Gamecocks, just like we were just what the doctor ordered last weekend for the Georgia Bulldogs. It's very unfortunate for us that Kentucky beat SC last week.
Sure, we've beaten SC two out of the last three years. But those teams didn't have the offensive line that this team has. Don't be too glad about Lattimore missing the start today; his backup is the guy who gained 125 yards against us last season. And Alshon Jeffery should have a field day against us.
Don't forget that we'll have a true freshman starting at center against a stout defensive front, and don't forget that our starting tackles are still gimpy.
I really, really hope we score some points. The team seemed angry and embarrassed after the Georgia loss, and hopefully they don't get embarrassed today. But their odds of winning are very slim.
Call it 24-3 Gamecocks.
But don't go jump off a building if we lose. We have no business winning this game. Instead, we need to figure out something we can do offensively, get our young O-linemen some more quality minutes, and shore up our weaknesses on defense.
In fact, that's what we need to do in our next three games. OK, go ahead and say we can beat Florida. Do you know how loaded with talent the Gators are? We'll be just what the doctor ordered for them too. No, we need to focus on self-improvement and building a solid foundation for the future.
Then maybe we can have some success when we finish our season with three progressively weaker opponents: Kentucky, Tennessee and Wake Forest. Beating two of three of those teams would be a big deal for us and give us some momentum heading into 2011.
As for 2011, here's what we need to do:
• Get a whole new offensive coaching staff. It's time for a change. We recruit marginal SEC talent on both sides of the ball, but our defense is always competitive because of our defensive coaches and schemes. In fact, our defense looks so great because our offense is so unbelievably bad. I'm glad we've changed coordinators and schemes, but we need to keep changing until we find something that works. Anything else is just rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic.
• Get Jordan Rodgers healed and give him the ball next season. We'll be much better at all positions but quarterback next season and then even better in 2012. So we need to go with a quarterback in 2011 who'll be around in 2012. Rodgers is redshirting and will be available to fit the bill. Let's redshirt Damien Fleming next season and get him ready to be a three year starter in 2013. Meanwhile, Larry's got six more games to change our minds, and I hope he does.