What a year we’ve had in the SEC. More twists than a bag of pretzels, yet, at the end, there’s a familiar theme. Alabama representing the West in this year’s SEC Championship Game. They face the Florida Gators by virtue of their 7-1 conference record. And, it turns out, by virtue of their conversion of 4th and 14 against your Tennessee Volunteers or else there’d be a whole lot more orange this year down in Atlanta.
But it wasn’t meant to be. RTI’s Final SEC Regular Season Power Rankings, however, are. And they appear below.
It almost doesn’t matter where you’re ranked amongst this group. If you’re in it, you were simply horrible this year.
14. South Carolina (3-9, 1-7)
How did South Carolina beat UNC? Peaked a bit early, no? If that opening Thursday win against what turned out to be a very good North Carolina team was the season highlight, then their in-conference highlight had to be their lone win. It came against a nearly-as-awful Vanderbilt team.
13. Missouri (5-7, 1-7)
Gary Pinkel is officially gone (get well soon!). Unfortunately for the all-time winningest and former Tiger coach, his offense left about 13 weeks prior.
12. Kentucky (5-7, 2-6)
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. It will take more than a couple of somewhat snazzy recruiting classes to turn around a century of football futility. But this year Mark Stoops had me fooled. After the Wildcats started 4-1 (2-1), I thought they’d maybe turned the corner. But when they proceeded to drop six of their next seven, it was pretty clear that I, along with all of BBN, was obviously wrong.
11. Vanderbilt (4-8, 2-6)
You know things are bad when your team lands in the Astonishingly Awful category, yet it’s still a big improvement from the year prior, which is exactly the case for the Vanderbilt Commodores. Derek Mason finally notched his first SEC win (over Missouri), then followed that up a few weeks later with a W over Kentucky. Vanderbilt really did get better this year. But they’re still really bad.