The SEC is coming off a down year where only Alabama was a big time National threat. Will they go back to being a dominating powerhouse this year? Lets take a look and predict both divisions.
1) Georgia Bulldogs
Georgia finished 8-5 in coach Kirby Smart’s debut last fall, but three of those losses came by three points or less. They have a great set of running backs led by Nick Chubb and a possible big time QB in Jacob Eason
Projected record 9-3(6-2 conf)
2) South Carolina Gamecocks
The Gamecocks have a young and up and coming QB in Jake Bentley and he is surrounded by a big time receiving corps. The Gamecocks have a bright future.
Projected record 8-4(5-3 conf)
3) Kentucky Wildcats
Kentucky showed marked improvement last fall, finishing 7-6 after three straight losing seasons under coach Mark Stoops. The Wildcats can lean on running back Benny Snell and one of the league’s top offensive lines until the passing attack finds its rhythm in 2017. The Wildcats back seven should be solid. My only question will be the defensive front’s ability to shut down the run.
Projected record 7-5(4-4 conf)
4) Florida Gators
The Gators lost a lot off of there defense and they still don’t have a QB. I think the string of consecutive SEC East titles ends this year for Florida.
Projected record 6-6(4-4 conf)
5) Tennessee Volunteers
This year will see head coach Butch Jones start to come under fire. You only get so long to win at a program like Tennessee and 7-5, 8-4 records do not cut it.
Projected record 6-6(4-4 conf)
6) Vanderbilt Commodores
Vandy had a great year for Vandy last year, but I think they will now drop off from last year’s success.
Projected record 5-7(2-6)
7) Missouri Tigers
The Tigers will be as good as last year, which means they are in for a long season.
Projected record 4-8(conf 1-7)
1) Alabama Crimson Tide
The Tide suffered serious losses because of graduation on the defensive side of the ball. With that being said, Coach Nick Saban will probably replace them with players that will be just as good if not better, if that is possible. QB Jalen Hurts and running back Bo Scarbrough head up an offense that could be very explosive, especially on the ground.
Projected record 11-1(conf 8-0)
2) Auburn Tigers
Auburn landed Jarrett Stidham as a transfer from junior college/Baylor, and the sophomore should be the missing piece for an offense that averaged 31.2 points per game last fall. In addition to Stidham, Auburn’s attack features a promising group of receivers, one of the SEC’s top offensive lines, and the one-two punch of Kerryon Johnson and Kamryn Pettway at running back.
Projected record 10-2(conf 6-2)
3) LSU Tigers
The Tigers are loaded on defense and have a big time running back, but they have huge question marks on the offensive line and at QB.
Projected record 9-3(conf 5-3)
4) Mississippi State Bulldogs
Mississippi State is the dark horse to watch in the SEC West. The addition of coordinator Todd Grantham and a handful of junior college recruits should provide an instant impact on a defense that surrendered 31.8 points per game last fall.
Projected record 8-4(Conf 4-4)
5) Arkansas Razorbacks
I have Arkansas ahead of the rest here simply because their schedule is easier.
Projected record 5-7(Conf 3-5)
6) Texas A&M Aggies
The Aggies have a ton of question marks, but to me every team from number 5 on down does.
Projected record 4-8(conf 2-6)
7) Ole Miss Rebels
The Rebels have a ton of questions and not enough answers.
Projected record 4-8(Conf 1-7)