The SEC was finally knocked off its national championship throne in 2013, as Auburn lost the title game to FSU. Despite not bringing home the big one, the conference still proved to be the toughest in the nation, recording the best bowl record (7-3).
As the book is closed on 2013, we begin to look ahead to 2014. Once again, the SEC will be stacked, particularly the SEC West. Alabama has proven to simply reload under Nick Saban, while Auburn is just getting rolling with Gus Malzahn. Les Miles and Cam Cameron seem to be the perfect fit, and will welcome a program-changing player in Leonard Fournette to campus this year.
The SEC East is more of a toss up, with Florida trying to shake off an injury-riddled season. Georgia, Missouri and South Carolina will all welcome new starting quarterbacks.
Following is a rundown of the way-too-early SEC Power Rankings for 2014, with the reasoning for their placement in 10 words or less.
- Alabama - Nick Saban. Nick Saban. Nick Saban. Nick Saban. Kirby Smart.
- Auburn - Gus Malzahn’s system will further develop at Auburn.
- LSU - Year 2 of the Cam Cameron regime welcomes Leonard Fournette.
- Florida - Injuries decimated the Gators in 2013. New OC Kurt Roper.
- Georgia - Gurley and Marshall will allow Hutson Mason to get comfortable.
- Missouri - Maty Mauk has that Johnny Manziel swagger.
- South Carolina - Never count out the Ol’ Ball Coach.
- Ole Miss - Hugh Freeze has built a foundation of young stars.
- Texas A&M - Kevin Sumlin is recruiting lights out, needs one year.
- Vanderbilt - Too tough for Franklin to repeat SEC East success.
- Tennessee - Vols will slightly improve in Year 2 under Butch Jones.
- Mississippi State - The SEC West is simply too tough to compete.
- Arkansas - See Mississippi State.
- Kentucky - Mark Stoops is a good coach, but it’s still Kentucky.