Steele’s 2011 Preseason All-SEC Teams

I’m not one of the kool kidz who received an advanced copy of the mag, but Steele has his preseason All-SEC picks posted at his site.  Here’s what they look like:

Yes, Dawg fans, that’s Isaiah Crowell manning one of the fourth team running back slots.

I see a total of thirteen Georgia players (Boykin is listed twice, for a total of fourteen slots) dotting Steele’s list, five of those on the first team.  Alabama leads the conference with eighteen.  Arkansas matched Georgia’s tally.

A few random thoughts and observations:

  • It’s a long way down for Auburn.  Steele isn’t impressed with the returning national champs.  There are only three Auburn players on his list, none of those on his first team.  Word is that Steele has picked Auburn to finish last in the West this season and you can see why he does that – even Vanderbilt had six names out of the 112 total.
  • Is Chris Relf still in the SEC?  I don’t see listing Bray and Brantley ahead of Relf at this point in time.  And while I understand the need to hedge bets, it’s a little weird not seeing Garcia’s name there, either.
  • Lots of running backs.  The conference is loaded.  Some of the names missing from Steele’s top eight:  Perkins, McCalebb and Demps.
  • Ditto at wide receiver.  Steele screws one spot up by including Chris Rainey, but even with that, I’d have a hard time leaving any of Arkansas’ top four wideouts off the list, but who else do you bump off?  (Before you go there, Tavarres King is likely to produce enough to justify inclusion.)  And I think Dustin Hunter is primed to have a big year for Tennessee.
  • If Georgia has another mediocre year, don’t blame the talent.  Did you ever think you’d see a preseason list which includes more players from Georgia than Florida or LSU?
  • Alabama’s defense is going to be sick.  Steele has two of the Tide’s linemen, all four of their linebackers and three starters in the defensive backfield on his first, second and third teams.  (The other two had better step it up.)
  • Precocious.  Aside from Crowell, check out Jadeveon Clowney, third team defensive lineman.

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UPDATE:  Year2 has some chart action.  The math is interesting for the East; Steele looks like he’s got Georgia and South Carolina in a dog fight.

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23 Comments

Filed under Phil Steele Makes My Eyes Water, SEC Football

23 responses to “Steele’s 2011 Preseason All-SEC Teams

  1. Macallanlover

    I am a Steele fan who respects the time he puts into his magazine and ratings. Having said that, his crystal ball may have better research behind it but no one can predict how team chemistry will play out. Yes, we have significant talent in a few isolated positions but not having one player worthy of 1st or 2nd team defense is a major concern of mine. I feel he has this pegged correctly although Kwami or Big John could make a statement this fall and appear on the more important post-season All-SEC
    teams. We had better hope so, defense has got to be the most improved unit.

    • Chuck

      No player on first or second team defense jumped out at me, too. Can’t blame Steele – we haven’t shown much so far – but unless we can prove him wrong about that it’s going to be a long season. I like offense as much as anyone, but you can’t win consistently if you can’t stop anyone when the fourth quarter rolls around.

      I think the defense is going to be better than it was last year, but I am still more worried about that than I am excited about Crowell being named 4th team in a preseason prediction.

  2. orlandodawg

    All the top talent Florida has signed over the years, and only one first-teamer, and only one offensive player on the first three teams? Wow.

    • Plus, I would think that Steele would have Garcia in Brantley’s place if Garcia weren’t suspended. And we all know Garcia will be back.

      Certainly seems that Steele likes UGA a lot.

  3. The Life of Reilly

    Steele put Lattimore in that same spot last year, I believe.

  4. The Original Cynical in Athens

    Do people actually watch Mark Barron play, or do they simply go off of his measureables and recruiting stars?

    He is the classic all hype, no game guy, who consistently gets put on all-conference teams, has nice stats, but does not ever positively impact the ballgame.

    Of course, safety is really, really, really weak across the conference, and the fact that Bacarri Rambo made any of the 4 teams is evidence of that. Again, did Steele actually watch Rambo play last year?

    Craig Loston and Eric Reid, both sophs at LSU will be two of the best safeties in the league and are nowhere on Steele’s lists.

  5. Sanford222View

    Did I miss Andre Dubose have a monster year as a kick returner last year? How is he ahead of both Richardson and Boykin?

    I also found it interesting Steele is willing to put Crowell on a list but not Jenkins. Big John has received as much hype as Isaiah. Also, has no one clued Steele into the fact that Tyson is going to play DE not DT this year?

  6. MrGFR

    Senator Blutarsky is not on the hotseat. He is still right here “in my lap”.

  7. Steve M.

    The pigs won’t be happy. Davis was the leading rusher in the SEC last season. I’m not sure Steele can justify putting him behind both Lattimore and Richardson.

  8. Meg

    In all honesty after watching the Spring Game and keeping abreast of what was going on in the other practices, I think UGA’s Defense is going to be far better than anyone will credit it right now. There is a huge caveat with the UGA OL being such a vortex of suck, but I was really, really impressed with not just the starters on that DL, but the relief coming in and blowing the line up time and again, see Derrick Lott. And that doesn’t even count the guys coming in this summer. I, for one, think the UGA D will be well-known by the end of this year.

    • Macallanlover

      No one wants you to be correct about the defense than I, but right now I would settle for them just rising to the level of “average” this season. They were so bad last year I have trouble recalling a worse UGA defense, ever. Perhaps not statistically, but I don’t recall them making one single stop at a crucial time, they just couldn’t get off the field.

      The problem with using the Spring Game as a reason for optimism is the weird selection process we used for determining teams. It guaranteed we would not see any units working together That may be good fun for playground games but it insured we fans would leave the Spring practices with no idea of what we could expect. Of all the units that need to function together it is the OL that most has to perform as a unit to be effective. It was such a disappointment last season relative to expectations, but it wasn’t the worst unit on the team, imo. I do expect the defense to win “most improved” in 2011, but that may not be good enough because the standard was so low last year. I will give you that Kwami’s play in the middle on G Day gives me some hope for an effective defense. I hope you are prophetic on your call; they will certainly get tested on September 3.

  9. zdub

    It looks like even folks outside of the UGA program and its fans think that Crowell is the de facto starter even before he gets on campus. Interesting to see that because I thought most non-UGA folks would give the nod to CK just because of the amount of time he has spent here.

    Crowell’s performance could go a bunch of different ways this year. He could be Lattimore-esque and make the first team (not likely, but nonetheless possible), he could share carries with CK and the rest and contribute in a “limited” role (most likely), or he could downright not perform well at all his first year (completely possible) and not make any post-season “teams”. Regardless, he hasn’t even joined the team yet so putting him on that list seems a bit strange, but hey, the preseason is boring enough, why not throw in some conversation starters once in a while?

    That said, Murray has to perform well for the running game to have a chance to succeed and vice versa. Balance has won it for us in the past and could possibly win it for us this year too. If we can own the trenches, we can win games.

  10. I got some advanced material. He has Georgia No. 9 overall and S. Carolina No. 14. No Florida to be found in top 25.

    1. Bama

    2. OU

    3. Boise

    4. Oregon

    5. Va Tech

    6. ND

    7. LSU

    8. Tex A&M

    9. Georgia

    10. Fla St.

    11. TCU

    12. Nebraska

    13. Ark

    14. S. Carolina

    15. Ohio St.

    16. Stanford

    17. USC

    18. Texas

    19. Ok St.

    20. S. Miss

    21. Houston

    22. Ariz. St.

    23. Wisky

    24. Penn St.

    25. S. Fla.

    • That’s an interesting projection, at least as it pertains to Georgia. For that to play out, it seems Steele expects Georgia to lose the opener and then rip through the rest of its SEC schedule.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        Yep. And make it to the SECCG and lose to Bama.

      • Macallanlover

        Senator, I agree that prediction forecasts the UGA games with Boise and SC, but I don’t get see how Bama, Oregon, and LSU end up in the Top 7 since LSU plays the Tide and Ducks. I do agree Alabama and LSU look to be very well matched and should be the best in the SEC if the old injury bug doesn’t interfere. Steele also sees OU handling FSU in Tally. Even at night, the humidity will present a challenge for the Sooners at that time of the year. Looks like a must-see game to me.

        Of all his picks, I most hope he has the one on UGA right but fear he may be out on a flimsy limb. I can see us 10-2 in the regular season if everything falls our way, but with a loss in the SECCG I can’t see us in the Top 10 and 3 losses. He must feel Boise is the only game we drop, and that UGA would play Alabama close. Just seems very optimistic at this point but that is what the off-season can be: a good time for dreams.

  11. JaxDawg

    Caleb King is the second comin…….I mean, Isaiah Crowell is the second coming of Herschel Walker.

  12. Mike

    With all that talent, there are no excuses for UGA not to have a pretty good year.