What is the deal with the SEC this year?

Bad or mediocre teams are everywhere. Let’s see… Arkansas, Missouri, Old Miss, A+M, Auburn, Tennessee, Florida and LSU. Those are just the teams I have seen. Alabama looks good, but somebody else needs to play better or we are gonna be about like the Big 12 last year . The Big 12(10) looks to be the better conference this year. I guess it is just time for this conference to take a breath. It is a shame we are not there to take advantage. Looks like MSU is ready. Timing is everything and we don’t have it.

I think there’s been a huge fall off in the caliber of coaching in this league, especially in the West. Urban Meyer, Spurrier, Miles, and Chizk all won national titles and are gone. Richt and Petrino were and are great coaches. They are gone. Freeze, well, you know the story there. Coaching is hugely critical in college football.

No team is exactly burning it up on the grid iron. Alabama don’t look great either. The Big 12 isn’t any better than the SEC. Vandy beat K State last night bad. K State was ranked in the top 25.

It will be mid October before a case could be made for what teams are really good.
Defense across the country stinks for the most part.

If we were in the SEC east we could have back to back 10 win seasons with no problem.

SEC west
Bama is beatable this year. Heck we had 400 yards passing aginst them last year.
If we could have spelled defense last year we could have beaten them.
Auburn isn’t that great on offense. Their D is good but beatable
LSU no passing attack play to stop the run and you win.
Ole Miss pressure that Sophmore QB and keep him rattled and he will throw it to the defense.
Mooooo U. Looks good on both sides of the ball. But you would have to outscore them.
Texas A&M. The past 4 years we have found ways to gift wrap them a comeback when we have dominated 3 quarters of the game. They are horrible
Actually our defense is talented enough to win a lot of games. It’s up to our offense to sustain drives and let the D rest but we have to score TD’s.

I think by the end of the season we may all be surprised just how much the defense is improved. Anything is possible in college football.

Freeze is NO WHERE IN THE CALIBER of the other coaches you mentioned. No where - even coach clock.

Last week I heard some talking head on the radio saying the SEC was down (mentioned TCU total domination of Arkansas among others) and nothing special. He said he saw plenty of great talent, but that the talent was not getting used (coached) properly. I pay little attention to those guys, but I wonder if he had a point. I don’t claim to know. I did see very poor coaching of Ole Miss, LSU, and TN yesterday. I thought MSU was very well coached (they nearly always seemed to be). Arkansas did not play, but they were certainly out coached the week before.

Time will tell if these teams get straighten out, but they are not nearly as polished as they should be.

You could also add the names of Fulmer, Nutt, Cutcliff, Pinkle, Franklin.

Generally, when the QB play is good, the team looks well coached. When it is not, then there are usually glaring holes to see. I don’t see a lot of great teams in the league right now and that speaks to the play of the quarterbacks in general. Great QBs overcome lots of coaching issues. They always do.

The SEC, outside of Alabama, wasn’t great last year; struggled quite a bit vs. Power 5 teams - especially the ACC - and every team but Alabama had at least four losses. This season looks to be a continuance of that.

I agree 100 percent about the coaching. This crop of coaches is nowhere near what the league had at its peak between 2007-11, especially from an offensive standpoint.

IMO, the league was at its peak prior to 2007, when UF, UG, UT were rolling. Also, Saban was at LSU prior to 2007 and Holtz was at South Car.

Would’ve been a good year for Bret to step up and get us in the top 3-4 in the SEC.

I guess I’ll push back on the SEC is down.

  1. Alabama - opened the season by knocking around one the chief competitors for the NC on a neutral field.

  2. UGA - has win @Notre Dame.

  3. UK - wins at USC and at Southern Miss.

  4. MSU - won easily at La Tech (who won at Western Kentucky) and then dominated LSU.

  5. Vandy - won easily at MTSU (favorite in CUSA) and then knocked off ranked KSU.

  6. USC - beat a quality NC State club and then lost to UK, which may say more about UK than USC.

  7. UF - ranked #20 with one loss after a slew of players were suspended.

  8. Auburn - losing 14-6 to Clemson doesn’t look like such a bad result after what Clemson did to Petrino. If they find any O…

  9. LSU - looked fine until they ran into MSU

  10. Ole Miss - close loss at Cal may look okay later. Cal is undefeated with win at UNC.

  11. UT - win over Ga Tech in Atlanta and close loss to UF.

  12. A&M - should be undefeated with win at Rose Bowl.

  13. Ark - stumbled at home to ranked team and looking for redemption.

  14. Mizzou - dominated twice by quality teams

Only Mizzou has been uncompetitive against quality teams to this point. UK, Vandy, and MSU are better than expected.

Losses outside the SEC are to #8 Michigan (neutral), Purdue (2-1, close loss to Louisville), @Cal (3-0), @ #2 Clemson, @UCLA (2-1), and #16 TCU (3-0).

Not as good as an unsustainable peak is not the same as down.

Yes, the SEC struggled last year against Power 5 opponents. In 2016, the SEC west was 5-7 against P5 opponents, and the SEC overall was 11-14. Only one team in the final AP top 10, Bama. That’s a bad look, I hope the SEC can improve upon that this year.

Other conferences have caught up, the Big 10 hiring Urban Meyer, Harbaugh from the NFL, Franklin at Penn St, Whisky in the top 10… Meyer has already won a NC and Harbaugh has recruited like crazy. Also, the ACC has two national championships the past 4 years.

From 2006-2012, that 7 year stretch, the SEC won 7 national championships in a row. It wasn’t one team with total domination either. Florida, LSU, Auburn and Bama all won NC’s in that span. Georgia also had a couple of top 5 finishes in that time frame, So. Carolina had a couple of top 10 finishes and we finished 5th in 2011.

2013-2016, that 4 year stretch, the SEC won 1 national championship. It’s been Bama dominating and everyone else pretty mediocre. 2016 one team in top 10 final poll. 2015 had 2 teams in final AP top 10 poll, Bama winning the NC and Ole Miss at 10 (with their ONLY top 10 finish under the Frozen One).

We can still win 3-4 conference games this year. We are going to play some very mediocre teams. This week is super critical, we need to win Saturday, badly.

And Sagarin still ranked the SEC West as the #1 division in college football. It’s an abuse of language to refer to 6 teams in the top 27 of the final composite computer rankings of 2016 as Bama and a bunch of mediocre teams. All but 10 teams in college football are mediocre?

Alabama finished second last year. They were the only threat from the conference to make the playoff.

LSU was the next highest rated team finishing 13. LSU must have thought they were mediocre because the fired their coach in the middle of the year. They were one dimensional, couldn’t throw at all.

Florida finished next at 14. They were also very one dimensional, no passing threat whatsoever. We drilled them, held them in check with the worst defense in our history.

Tennessee was next at 22. Their coach is firmly on the hot seat.

Auburn was 24.

I believe every team but Bama had 4 losses…11-14 against P5 teams.

In historical terms for the SEC, that was mediocre.

This year left on our schedule, we have A&M, Mizzou, SC, & Ole Miss. All appear very mediocre.

I will let you know if anyone representing Noah Webster contacts me for abuse of language.

Wisconsin beat LSU on the last play on a neutral field last year. They won 11 games playing in the Big 10 and finished in the top 10. Is that because they were a juggernaut or because the Big 10 had less depth than the SEC? Their game with LSU was a dead heat, and the computer agreed that they were close at the end of the season despite LSU finishing 8 - 4.

It’s going to be more difficult to avoid four losses when you don’t get any breaks in the schedule. The “freebie” in the West last year was 5-7 Ole Miss, who wasn’t bowl eligible despite losing only 48 - 43 to NC runnerup Bama and 45 - 34 to FSU after blowing first-half leads in both games. It stretches belief that Ole Miss wasn’t a better football team than many who played in bowls. KSU finished 9 - 4 in the Big 12 with every team behind them having a losing record. I wouldn’t be shocked if they wouldn’t have made bowl eligibility in the West.

I would highly disagree that playoff contention is the line for mediocrity. Heck, in my lifetime Arkansas has finished top-four in the rankings once. I wouldn’t be on this board if I thought I had enjoyed exactly one non-mediocre season in 50 years. Likewise, if 88% of the teams finish behind you in the rankings, that’s awfully tough grading to call that mediocre. Apparently over 100 teams had more weaknesses than LSU and UF.

Louis CK has a great routine on how everybody now defaults to the most extreme, binary language, e.g. hilarious, terrible, fantastic… It often doesn’t leave any leeway for nuanced discrimination when the extreme is warranted.

SEC against the Power 5 last season:

SEC West

#1 Bama
Wins: 52 - 6 Southern Cal (#2 PAC 12 S), 24 - 7 Washington (#1 PAC 12 N)
Losses: 35 - 31 Clemson (#1 ACC Atl)

#2 Auburn
Wins: None
Losses: 19 - 13 Clemson (#1 ACC Atl), 35 - 19 OU (Big12 #1 overall)

#3 LSU
Wins: 29 - 9 Louisville (#2 ACC Atl)
Losses: 16 -14 Wisky (#1 B10 W)

#4 A&M
Wins: 31-24 UCLA (#5 P12 S)
Losses: 33-28 KSU (#4 B12 Overall)

#5 Arkansas
Wins: 41 - 38 TCU (#5 Big 12 Overall)
Losses: 35 - 24 Va Tech (#1 ACC Coast)

#6 MSU
Losses: None

#7 Ole Miss
Wins: None
Losses: 45 - 34 FSU (#3 ACC Atl)

No West team lost a single P5 game against a team that finished worse in their division than they did in the West. LSU, A&M, and Arkansas won games against opponents that had higher conference rankings. The overall record was 5 - 7. The 7 losses included 2 to the NC in close games, one to the Big 12 champ, and two to other squads that won their conference divisions. So, 5 of 7 losses were to teams that were no worse than divisional champs. The record was more about the SOS than mediocrity.

SEC East

#1 UF
Wins: 30 - 3 Iowa (#2 Big 10 W)
Losses: 31 - 13 FSU (#3 ACC Coast)

#2 UT
Wins: 45 - 24 Va Tech (#1 ACC Coast), 38 - 24 Nebraska (#3 Big 10 W)
Losses: None

#3 UGA
Wins: 33 - 24 UNC (#2 ACC Coast), 31 -23 TCU (#5 Big 12 overall)
Losses: 28 - 27 Ga Tech (#5 ACC Coast)

#4 UK
Wins: 41 -38 Louisville (#2 ACC Atl)
Losses: 33 - 18 Ga Tech (#5 ACC Coast)

#5 USC
Wins: None
Losses: 56 - 7 Clemson (#1 ACC Atl)

#6 Vandy
Wins: None
Losses: 38 - 7 Ga Tech (#5 ACC Coast), 41 - 17 NC State (#4 ACC Atl)

#7 Mizzou
Wins: None
Losses: 26 - 11 West Va (#3 Big 12 overall)

UT, UGA, and UK got wins against teams that finished better in their respective conferences. UF, UGA, and UK had losses against teams that finished worse. Oddly UGA and UK both lost to Ga Tech but defeated UNC and Louisville, teams that finished higher than Tech in the ACC. Tech-UGA is, of course, a bitter rivalry that tends to be close regardless of record, and Tech is a difficult style matchup if you play them once in a blue moon like UK. Overall record was 6 - 7, with 3 losses by Vandy and Mizzou and another loss to the NC.

Nonconference opponents don’t tend to play SEC teams in the regular season, especially the West and East Elite, unless they have high aspirations or are rivals. The SEC had 6 wins punching up in class with several near misses to 3 losses punching down in class. The rest, losses and wins, were generally won by significant favorites relative to conference finish.

Last time I checked our current conference record is 0-0. And we have one loss to a team currently ranked in the top 15. Which has nothing to do with where we will finish in the conference standings. What will have something to do with our finish is how we play in those eight games starting Saturday. I realize that the fashionable sentiment on this board this week is Doom followed by Gloom. I keep being reminded of the 1977 Notre Dame team which lost to a bad Ole Miss team (5-6 final record) in September. And never lost again, and got the national championship by beating Texas in the Cotton Bowl. Am I saying we’re going to go 11-1? No, but I’m not saying we’re not either.