SEC Football Articles
SEC Power Rankings 12/01/13
Wow, what a wild ride. Yesterday's football games, in and out of conference, were amazingly fun to watch. This is the final power poll of the season, and the finishing order is a HUGE surprise to everyone based on pre-season conceptions. That's why they play the games and don't award the W based on what is supposed to happen.
These rankings are based on my assessment of where each team falls in the pecking order RIGHT NOW based on what each team has done ALL SEASON, so there are THREE teams that will be ranked ahead of other teams that have a better record. Jimmies will be rustled and the butt-hurt will be strong...
1. Auburn To be the best, you have to beat the best. That is exactly what these Tigers have done. We all know that more often than not, a championship team needs a little luck. Well, if you take a miracle fluke play against UGA and combine it with Bama missing all those field goals / missed scoring opportunities; even the most die hard and homeristic War Eagle will have to admit that this team has been the beneficiary of good fortune...
2. Missouri I struggled with this, as I felt like Mizzou's performance warranted a No. 1 ranking. At the same time, I find it hard to place this team over Bama. The truth is, the Tiger's overtime loss to SC is more respectable than Aubie's loss to LSU. But this is about where the teams stand right now. And Auburn just knocked off the No 1 team in the land. Plus, Mizzou had the worst offensive output against aTm of any of the "big name" schools that played the Aggies this year.
3. Alabama Amazing. This team good and truly had the Iron Bowl won. BUT, their kicker that never misses, missed FOUR. AND, the best coach in the nation got out-coached. I will be very surprised if this team does not get an at large BCS bowl bid, sorry Gamecocks...
4. South Carolina If the Gamecocks were ever going to win the conference, this looked like it would be the year. The truth is, there is no shame in their loss UGA early. However, just as Tennessee spoiled the Dawg's chances back in 2007, the Vols stepped up and wrecked Carolina's chances for a special season. And Auburn's win last night very likely shut the door on any BCS bowl hopes.
5. Georgia That's right, the Georgia Bulldogs truly look like the 5th best team in the conference right now. I know that I will be called a homer, but this team is one fluke play and a boatload of injuries away from being 10-2 at a minimum. Next year's starting QB, Hutson Mason, gave Dawg fans a reason to be excited about the future. But the real truth about why UGA holds this spot is that...
6. Louisiana State ...the Bayou Bengals looked pitiful on Friday. They also lost their star quarterback. Like UGA, the replacement looked good. Yes, it is true that good teams sometimes have to overcome adversity to beat bad teams, but I was shocked at what I saw in The Red Stick over the weekend. There is no excuse for one of the alleged better teams in the country to even almost lose to a team that is as bad as Arkansas has been this year.
7. Texas A & M this season has certainly been a letdown for Texas Aggie fans. From the top of the mountain and being Alabama's only serious threat for the SEC West to the Chick Fil A; Gator or Music City Bowl? That is what Aggie is looking at - I don't think a Cotton Bowl bid is realistic based on what the top echelon of the conference looks like.
8. Vanderbilt Did I say that Auburn ought to thank their lucky stars and that the Tigers have been fortunate? Hello Vandy... How did the 'Dores even almost lost to a crappy ACC team? Franklin is a great coach that has done an outstanding job in Nashville, but his team DID NOT look ready for game time yesterday. A Vandy team that looked lost is surprising, which is an amazing testament to how far this program has come. However, based on the body of work for the whole season, eighth best is about right.
9. Mississippi State Get your cowbells out, STATE is moving on up the conference power rankings!! Who woulda thunk it? Just 2 short weeks ago, bowl eligibility looked like a pipe dream and Mullen's seat was as hot as any in the conference. Amazing what a big rivalry win can do. They will still be below the Rebels in the bowl selection pecking order, but at this point, that's OK.
10. Mississippi Just like Vandy, this team did not look like they were ready for game time. Coach Freeze has still done an outstanding job engineering a turnaround for this program, but losing the Egg Bowl like that in a year when he had what looked like a much better team is nothing less than a step back. The Rebels really need an impressive bowl win to get their "mojo" back.
11. Tennessee What a nice way to finish the year. An impressive win will do a lot for a team's psyche, even one over a bad team. Sure, it was a bad year for the Vols, but after the Kiffin / Dooley disaster; fans saw enough this year to raise hopes and expectations. I can't help but think that Butch Jones is the right guy for this team and that better days are ahead.
12. Florida As of right now, it looks like the Gators will watch their old coach play their bitter in-state rival for the Mythical National Championship. Is that what football hell looks like? Nothing left to do but re-group and pray for a home run offensive coordinator hire...
13. Arkansas The Razorbacks were so damn close to pulling off a major upset on the road. ZERO conference wins has to sting, especially after the amazing effort put forth by this team over the last 2 weeks. Coach Bielema has had a very tough first year, but his guys have been showing up to play. The fact that he has not lost his team shows what the guy is made of. Next year does not look any easier, but I will be shocked if this squad does not improve a little.
14. Kentucky Sure, the Wildcats lost to the only ranked team they have played, but this team has looked very dominant against everyone else. Anything less than a top seed in March will be a disappointment. The hell you say? This is a FOOTBALL power poll? Oh, sorry...