#6 Texas A&M
#10 Ole Miss
My first reaction was "holy hell we're playing FIVE top ten teams (including the opener against USC) this season?!?!" Granted, I realize that that isn't fully true based upon the reality that Auburn and LSU play each other before we play either of them, so the loser could likely drop out of the top 10. (Not to mention the MANY remaining upset opportunities looming ahead of us this season). But FIVE of the seven teams in the SEC West are currently ranked in the top 10 teams in the Nation!
Do I want our team to win a National Championship? ABSOLUTELY. Is that going to be hard to do with such an impossibly difficult schedule? ABSOLUTELY. But let me tell you something else, I also really like watching exciting, relevant, competitive collegiate football games! We spent all last week complaining about how unfair it was to play someone of the caliber of Lamar two weeks ago and then repeated that same scenario by playing Rice this past week (don't expect that to change going into this week against a coach-less SMU team). And who's fault is that? I mean, no one complained about our lack of competition when we lost to Arkansas State back in 2008.
Well here's how I really feel. I legitimately feel awesome that Texas A&M will be involved in so many marquee top ten match-ups. It's fun to play other top ten teams with the entire nation checking in on the score! Something that gets forgotten and avoided with all of this conference watering down the PAC 12, Big 10, and Big 12 have done over the last few years.
We look forward to big-time bowl games because they are, more often than not, a great pairing of two equally talented and intriguing teams, but the reality is that the teams in the SEC West get to see these types of games every other week.
That builds a following, nourishes a fan base, and breeds competition. Winners want to win, but to be the best, you have to play the best AND beat the best. And no one is more excited about this sentiment than die-hard Aggie fans.