Game of the Week: Auburn vs. Georgia

TicketCity’s weekly ranking of the 10 hottest games in college football  is designed to identify the match-ups with the strongest ticket demand on a weekly basis. This week LSU vs. Alabama ranks #1 on our list. Contributor Jeff K. gives the run-down on who will win this stage-setting match-up.

 

Why Auburn will win the biggest game of the week:

What a difference a season can make. Last year Auburn struggled through a 3-9 season. The Tigers went winless in SEC play. Fast forward to 2013 and Auburn is just two wins from playing for the SEC Championship. Head coach Guz Malzhan has brought a new attitude to Auburn.

One of the reasons for Auburn’s resurgence is the running game. The Tigers average 320 yards per game, third in the country. Runningback Tre Mason has scored seven touchdowns in Auburn’s last two games. Quarterback Nick Marshall, a Georgia transfer, rushed for 214 yards and two scores last week against Tennessee. Georgia ranks 31st in the country in run defense, giving up 138 yards per game.  If Auburn can run the ball, and keep Georgia’s offense off the field, the Tigers should go into the season finale against Alabama with a shot at winning the SEC West.

Why I could be wrong:

Georgia has battled injuries throughout the season. The Bulldogs have been missing key playmakers on offense. Keith Marshall and Justin Scott-Wesley were lost for the season in the Tennessee game. Runningback Todd Gurley has missed three games. Wide receivers Chris Conley and Michael Bennett have missed multiple games. Despite all of the injuries, Georgia has kept fighting. Quarterback Aaron Murray has been the constant in the lineup. Murray set the record for career touchdown passes in the SEC during Georgia’s win over Appalachian State last week. Murray should get Conley and tight end Arthur Lynch back for the Auburn game. With some of his injured weapons returning, Murray gives Georgia a chance on Saturday. Auburn’s pass defense has been suspect, ranking 91st  in the country while giving up 252 yards passing per game.

Why you don’t want to miss this one:

Auburn can’t look past Georgia towards the upcoming Iron Bowl. The wounded Bulldogs still have fight left in them. Georgia has dominated this series, winning six out of the last seven meetings. They would love to spoil Auburn’s magical run this season.

Jeff Kubiszyn is a long-time college football fan and joins TicketCity this season to highlight the biggest game of the week. He is by no means a college football expert, except at the dinner table.

The Week in TicketCity Search – Touchdown, Luke Bryan

TicketCity Week in Search

Week of
Aug 19th
Previous
Week
Event
Searched
1 3 Luke Bryan
2 7 MS State Football
3 6 Houston Texans
4 - Taylor Swift
5 5 Dallas Cowboys
6 - SF 49ers
7 - Longhorns Football
8 8 Selena Gomez
9 - Razorbacks Football
10 - Auburn Football

Its beginning to look a lot like football season,
mascots in ev’ry slot.
But the prettiest sight to see are the tickets that will be
at your own front door.

Okay, not “ev’ry,” but I had to round a bit for the song parody to work. It is over half, so I’ve got the math on my side. Which is strange, because math and I generally do not get along well at all.

After weeks of near misses, Luke Bryan reaches the apex of his music career, capturing the top spot on the TicketCity Week in Search. The football shake-up leaves a number of previous contenders nowhere to be found. 1D missed the top completely for the first time in months while last week’s champ, Bruno Mars, conquered and departed.

Who were the pigskin favorites this week? The NFL’s usual suspects, the Texans and Cowboys, are joined by the 49ers, while on the college side, Mississippi State climbs even higher, and pulls along Auburn, Arkansas, and Texas. None of these teams are strangers to the top 10 from seasons past.

In between the football frenzy, former champ Taylor Swift returns with a solid landing at #4. The clock is ticking on the Red Tour. Fans have until the end of September to see the show live.

While the thought crossed my mind to rock the Perry Como with the original “It’s Beginning to Look a lot Like Christmas”, that would be a bit unfair to Mr. Bryan’s achievement this week. So here’s the video for “Crash My Party.” Yes, there are pickup trucks and flannel shirts.

The Week in TicketCity Search – Time Goes in One Direction

TicketCity Week in Search

Week of
Sept. 3rd
Previous
Week
Event
Searched
1 1 Longhorns Football
2 2 Mississippi State Football
3 5 Dallas Cowboys
4 8 Kevin Hart
5 4 Arkansas Football
6 - Texas A&M Football
7 3 One Direction
8 6 Houston Texans
9 - US Open Tennis
10 - Auburn Football

Football cleans up easily this week. Securing the top 3 spots and 70% of the countdown real estate, it certainly seems things are well underway. Both regular season NFL and college games have officially begun, and our top 2 have officially been unchanged for a month now. Things did wobble a bit this week, as the Cowboy faithful push The Boys to #3.

During a tough week, Kevin Hart turned in an impressive showing to land in the #4 spot, beating even One Direction, who fell to #7. Interestingly, both were at the VMA’s this week, with Hart hosting and 1D performing. The UK boy band took home a few spacemen in the process. One of them commented they’d “grown up watching this show.” Now I feel old, thanks. Hart will be back on the road soon after the VMA gig, starting later this month in Indianapolis.

Staggering in a little late to the party is the US Open, which is quite nearly over. The championships will all be played this weekend, barring weather of the inclement variety. The Open had been ongoing for over a week now, but hadn’t cracked the top 10. News that this would be former Open champion’s Andy Roddick’s final tournament before retiring may have helped boost interest.

The Week in TicketCity Search – September 9th

TicketCity Week in Search

Week of
Sept 4th
Previous
Week
Event
Searched
1 1 Texas Longhorns Football
2 2 Texas A&M Football
3 4 Mississippi State Football
4 3 US Open Tennis
5 - LSU Football
6 - ACL Fest
7 8 Oklahoma State Football
8 - Arkansas Football
9 10 Taylor Swift
10 - Auburn Football
Week of
Aug 28th
Previous
Week
Event
Searched
1 2 Texas Longhorns Football
2 - Texas A&M Football
3 - US Open Tennis
4 5 Mississippi State Football
5 3 Justin Bieber
6  - Texas Tech Football
7  - Chris Brown
8  - Oklahoma State Football
9 4 Mindless Behavior
10 9 Taylor Swift

Well, after a little time off, I’ve returned to find college football season has started. Yes, the weeks around the September kick-off are some of the few that find the countdown devoted so completely to sports. Can’t quite squeeze everyone with a microphone out, though. The resilient Miss Swift has held on both weeks, tenaciously clinging to the countdown.

Football isn’t the only sport that’s not only held on, but clung to the top five. That would be the US Open, tennis flavor, ongoing for the past couple weeks up in lovely Flushing, NY. Thanks to some rain outs, there’s still a lot of tennis to see. The tournament will run through next Monday, the 12th.

Another favorite shows up this week, ACL Fest. We’re just a week away from the 2011 festival. Since it seems the local climate remembered it doesn’t have to have three digit temperatures all the time, things are shaping up for a fine few days out at Zilker Park.

It’s A Week To Be Thankful For College Football

Thanksgiving week means it’s time to gore ourselves–but not on turkey and pumpkin pie! We’re talking about college football, and specifically this week’s rivalry week games. While other huge rivalries like Texas and Oklahoma or USC and UCLA are played out during other times of the season, this week gives us the opportunity to unabashedly wear our jerseys out to the store (or for more laxed environments, work) and have conversations with fans of the other team on how much their team, rich with history and tradition, isn’t good. Here’s a list of games we’re going to watch this weekend while our DVR works overtime recording the rest.

Auburn and Alabama (Alabama leads this series 40–33–1)
The annual Iron Bowl has a lot of intrigue surrounding it—and we’re not just talking about the players in the news. Auburn has already punched its ticket to the SEC Championship game against South Carolina. A loss to Alabama won’t prevent that, but it would put a huge damper in their quest for a national title. We’re sure that’s something Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban would love to be thankful for this holiday season.

Notre Dame at USC (Notre Dame leads series 42-33-5)
USC lack of bowl eligibility and Notre Dame’s uneven season has pulled some of the glitz and glamour out of the proceedings. But even that can’t pull us away. We’re interested to see how Notre Dame’s first-year coach Brian Kelley handles the pressure of trying to “Beat ‘SC.” While USC’s Lane Kiffin is also in his first year as coach, at least he’s been there before, as a coordinator under Pete Carroll.

Mississippi State and Mississippi (Ole Miss leads the series 60–40–6)
Known as the Battle of the Golden Egg–or Egg Bowl–a golden egg has been awarded to the winner since 1927. All we know is that lately the losers have had plenty of egg on their faces as in the past two years the winning squad has crossed the 40-point plateau, with the 2008 41-0 drubbing of MSU surely not out of their memories yet.

Michigan and Ohio State (Michigan leads the series 57-43-6)
One of football’s greatest rivalries, this contest transcends the actual game. This week, students from both schools will compete in banner contests, food drives and blood drives. That last one is fitting considering Michigan head coach Rich Rodriguez is 0-2 against the Buckeyes, so if it goes to 0-3, everyone in Ann Arbor will be asking for blood, too.

Which games do you think we’ll be missing out on? Let us know in the comments!