My SEC Power Poll ballot, Week 14

Another regular season in the books, one with a memorable final week, to say the least.  For greater context with my rankings, I’ve added each teams net yardage per game figures.

  1. Missouri (+104.10).  This team is perhaps one clanked field goal attempt away from being undefeated right now.
  2. Auburn (+76.70).  Yeah, they’ve been remarkably lucky in their last two games, but they’ve also been prepared enough to take advantage when opportunities presented themselves.  That’s good coaching.
  3. Alabama (+174.20).  The net yardage numbers suggest ‘Bama is still the best team in the conference.  That’s small consolation to Nick Saban this morning.
  4. South Carolina (+108.50).  Another 10-win season with little else to show for it.
  5. LSU (+116.20).  The net yardage number suggests that Miles’ team underachieved a little this season.
  6. Georgia (+108.50).  There’s a whiff of underachievement here, too, although injuries played their part in that.
  7. Texas A&M (+77.90).  The Aggies’ offense tailed off noticeably in the last two weeks of the season.
  8. Vanderbilt (+14.40).  The Commodores are this year’s conference overachievers, which may be why Southern Cal is expected to come knocking on James Franklin’s door soon.
  9. Mississippi State (+59.90).  Given the talent level, Dan Mullen turned in a credible coaching job this season.
  10. Mississippi (+96.50).  It feels like there should have been a lot more to Ole Miss’ season than the way it turned out, doesn’t it?
  11. Tennessee (-65.10).  On the other hand, the Vols’ season feels like it turned out just as expected.
  12. Florida (+2.40).  Yeah, injuries were a bear, but to go 4-8 without a negative net yardage number suggests some coaching issues.
  13. Arkansas (-56.20).  The only good thing you can say about going 0-8 in conference play is that it can’t get any worse.
  14. Kentucky (-85.90).  Bad, but not epically so.  No, really.
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9 Comments

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9 responses to “My SEC Power Poll ballot, Week 14

  1. TennesseeDawg

    As a service to the nation, we need Missouri to beat Auburn.

  2. Scorpio Jones, III

    Definitely agree about Auburn and Mizzou….it is really a toss up. The Miracle of the Dead Trees notwithstanding, that Malzahn’s folks had the presence of mind to change the return guy after Bama’s time out tells me Gus has a staff working its butts off, together.

    Auburn has really improved since LSU manhandled them….SEC Championship should be a very interesting game, indeed.

    Interesting Saban and Pinkel have some of the same history in their resumes. Not sure what it means, but something.

  3. Bulldog Joe

    Whiff of underachievement?

    We were ranked #5 and were the consensus pick to win the SEC East.

    It was a complete whiff.

    • I thought it was clear I was talking about the record in the context of net yardage. Next time I’ll spell it out for you.

    • Scorpio Jones, III

      With all respect, Joe…we were ranked fifth by people who had no idea what the team looked like beyond the quarterback, receiver corps, Gurley and Marshall.

      There is no possible way we would have been ranked that high had anybody taken the time to look at the age of the defense, the unsettled nature of the offensive line and special teams.

      And the rankings came out before we lost most of our offensive weapons.

      Pre-season rankings are simply worthless guesses based on faulty information.

      • Bulldog Joe

        Scorp,

        I saw those things too and agree the preseason ranking was too high, especially given our numbers and experience issues on defense.

        But we were solid and deep on offense with two returning kickers and a coaching staff left mostly intact from last season. I believe successfully defending the SEC East title was an appropriate expectation for this program.

        Our kicking game started slow with the suspensions, but eventually came around. Our punt and punt return game was a huge disappointment and special teams contributed to two of our losses. Also the speed in which we developed our pass coverage scheme and skills was/is too slow due in major part to our complex approach.

        Our injury situation is a tough problem to analyze. What is especially challenging is the number of ACL issues we had in non-contact situations. We changed our S&C philosophy last year to more of a speed-oriented approach. I do not know if this contributed to our situation, or if there are other factors involved. It needs to be analyzed and addressed.

        I do know we have a motivational issue with not putting away lesser opponents and leaving our starters in the entire game, which increases the chance of injury. Also, the inability to put kickoffs in the end zone doesn’t help us on the injury front.

        We also need to address the lack of respect we get from the SEC office and its officiating crews. Key calls played a role in two of our losses as well. This has gone on long enough during Coach Richt’s watch to no longer attribute it to just luck. It is not getting better.

        I certainly hope our leadership does not dismiss this season to just the injury situation. We have fundamental issues beyond that which need to be fixed and this is why we whiffed on this season.

        • Scorpio Jones, III

          “I do know we have a motivational issue with not putting away lesser opponents ”

          Joe…you lost me with this…motivational issue? This team….motivational issue?

          We did not straighten out the long snapper issues till what? The fifth game?

          All this and what I said before leads me to believe pre-season rankings are fallacious masturbation, just porn to sell magazines and stir up the fan base.

          Are any of the pre-season top five still there?

  4. Will Trane

    Now what can we say about the spread offense? Do not hear much criticism of it now. But it will be on display Saturday. Dawgs have to improve their line play more, pull some scholarships, recruit some power linemen and corners. Can not count of oft-injured players, and Dawgs seem to have too many of those past few years.

  5. Mayor of Dawgtown

    FWIW Senator, I agree with you putting Missouri #1. I’m sure there are many who would still place the Tide #1 or put the Cheatahs #1 ’cause they knocked off #1 Bama. But you are right to make Mizzou the top team IMHO.