The SEC has taken a beating toward the end of the regular season, with people saying the conference was mediocre beyond Nos. 1 and 2.
If you tuned in Saturday, you saw evidence that, no, the league is not dead.
South Carolina polished off ACC Atlantic Division winner Clemson. The evening portion included two overtime thrillers - Arkansas-LSU and Kentucky-Tennessee.
When the dust had settled there, Georgia was finishing off ACC Coastal Division winner Georgia Tech.
Might not have been the best top-to-bottom league in the country, but the SEC was close. Six of the league's teams finished with 7-5 records. That means there's some serious parity afoot.
There's little doubt about one thing: Saturday's game between No. 2 Alabama and No. 1 Florida should be sensational. It has the earmarks of something every bit as special as last year's game between the same teams. National title game bid? Heisman ramifications? What else you want?
Without A.J. Green, the Bulldogs' needed to figure something out. They did, using Caleb King (166 yards) and Washaun Ealey (183 yards) to punish Georgia Tech at the Jackets' own game.
South Carolina rushing
South Carolina's 223 rushing yards were the most for a Steve Spurrier-USC team against a BCS opponent. Kenny Miles (114 yards) got his starting gig back for the bowl.
Mississippi State's Dan Mullen deserves a lot of credit. His Bulldogs didn't have much left to play for, but he got their best effort in an Egg Bowl dispatching of Ole Miss. How'd the team celebrate? By toting the Egg Bowl trophy around town.
A week after climbing back up on the pedestal on which it began the season, Ole Miss gave it all back with a deflating loss to rival Mississippi State. The Rebels can make good with another Cotton Bowl win. That would get them to nine victories two consecutive seasons. Got a lot of rebuilding to do after this season.
Georgia and South Carolina deserved better bowls after those victories against instate rivals. But, alas, they'll probably be in the SEC's bottom two games, in Birmingham and Shreveport. They still have braggin' rights? And at least they'll be in games they should win?
The regular season's over, so does that mean we'll be hearing from Lane Kiffin a lot more? Taunting a Kentucky team that took you to overtime? Not letting this non-existent feud with Urban Meyer go? When will he learn? You had a nice season; why not enjoy that instead of going after others?