SEC BUZZ

Compiled by Ray Cox

THE SCOOP

Alabama running back Jalston Fowler said he ran scared, his word not ours, in the Crimson Tide's season opener against Virginia Tech at the Georgia Dome, not the least because coaches kept telling him he was playing that way and that he was "tired of hearing" it. Fowler said, "I thought my knee was going to give out on me (against Virginia Tech). This game (against Texas A&M), I was like, 'Whatever. Just go out there … and if it goes out, it goes out. Just go out there and play.'" Fowler scored the Tide's decisive touchdown on a 5-yard pass from AJ McCarron and had four carries for 37 yards.

FAVORITE?

Former Florida coach Ron Zook appeared before the Knoxville Quarterback Club this week and had an early prediction for a national champion: “I really believe this,” Zook said. “I think if Oregon and Alabama played tomorrow, Oregon would win.”

MONEY

The Arkansas athletic department released its contract with coach Bret Bielema, one that pays him $2.95 million each year with incentives totaling another $700,000. Not including the incentives, it puts him squarely in the middle of SEC football coaches.

AGGIE WOES

Texas A&M’s defense allowed six long touchdown drives to top-ranked Alabama, and defensive coordinator Mark Snyder said the lessons his young players learned will last a long time. “The thing is, our kids care. There were a lot of hurt kids in the locker room. They played their tails off,” he said. Over three games, the Aggies rank 115th of 123 FBS teams in rushing defense, 112th in total defense and 107th in scoring defense.

LEGENDS

The 2013 class of 14 players has been chosen, with the East Division legends revealed Wednesday and the West Division to be announced Thursday. The class will be honored at the “Weekend of Champions” Dec. 6-7 in Atlanta. The selections in the East: Florida WR Wes Chandler, Georgia RB Tim Worley, Kentucky LB Wilbur Hackett, Missouri QB Phil Bradley, South Carolina P Max Runager, Tennessee DB Inky Johnson and Vanderbilt CB/RB Jimmy Williams.

QUOTABLE

“This is the kind of game we need. We recognize the conference we play in. Our team is ambitious. We’re a team with real designs on the back end of the season. A conference game … generally comes down to the end. If you enjoy competition at the very highest level, you love these games.” — LSU coach Les Miles about Saturday’s visit by Auburn to Tiger Stadium.

INJURY UPDATE

Arkansas quarterback Brandon Allen (right shoulder) hasn’t practiced this week and will be a game-time decision at Rutgers, Bielema said.

BY THE NUMBERS

2 Number of ranked teams that Alabama will play the remainder of the regular season: No. 21 Ole Miss next weekend and No. 6 LSU on Nov. 6, both in Tuscaloosa.

68 Consecutive weeks in the AP Top 25 by LSU, the second-longest streak in the nation behind Alabama.

10 SEC teams averaging at least 30 points per game this season through Week 3; seven averaged 30 or more for the 2012 season.