Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Breaking Down The NCAA Part 9 of 12

Southeastern Conference Order Of Finish

East Division

1. Florida- Tim Tebow may be the best college football player ever, if not also the most decorated. He lead an amazing Gator team that returns all 11 starters on defense and 10 second stringers. Brandon Spikes is a dynamic LB who makes plays all over the field. The Gators did lose Percy Harvin, who despite injuries led the team in rushing and was usually the second best player on the field with Tebow. Anything less than a National Title would be a huge disappointment for this team.

2. Georgia-AJ Green tries to be a leader on offense after the Bulldogs lost QB Matthew Stafford (1st Overall Pick, Detroit Lions) RB Knowshon Moreno (12th overall pick, Denver Broncos) and WR Mohamed Massaquoi (50th overall pick, Cleveland Browns). The Bulldogs have the best offensive line in the conference, and that could be enough to lock up second in the SEC East. LB Rennie Curran is an all conference candidate. A big bowl game will be in store for the Bulldogs.

3. South Carolina- Year 5 of the Steve Spurrier Experiment is underway. An Outback Bowl bid for the Gamecocks was a nice end to a disappointing season. QB Stephen Garcia could be the signal caller Spurrier needs to run the fun 'n gun. SS Darian Stewart is a leader on defense, something vital when you play in the SEC 8 times a year.

4. Tennessee- Lane Kiffin is going to be the Rick Neuheisel in the SEC this year. His allegations of recruiting scandals in the conference and declaring how a certain school's graduates have less than stellar careers have made some fellow SEC Coaches upset. All that is being said, his team is just flat out less talented than most of the SEC. He brought his dad Monte to handle the defense and install the Cover-2, and hopefully lead the Vols to a bowl game. SS Eric Berry is a probably top 5 pick in the draft next fall.

5. Vanderbilt- After winning the Music City Bowl in a wonderful season in Nashville, the Commodores look to build on that success. Vanderbilt has an awesome defense, but a offense that was third worse in the NCAA. RB Jared Hawkins might need to shoulder more of the load as QB Larry Smith is still a sophomore. A bowl game is in the cross hairs for Vanderbilt.

6. Kentucky- The Wildcats were hurting after QB Andre Woodson graduated, as the passing attack dropped to 96th in the nation. This year could be different as JR QB Mike Hartline gets his job back after winning the Liberty Bowl for Kentucky. He lost his job midway through the season. Converted QB Randall Cobb looks to be a spark plug at wide out. This could be a tough season for Kentucky and they may miss out on a bowl.

West Division

1. LSU- RB Charles Scott leads the Tigers back to the elite football fans have been used to for the past decade. Despite churning out first round draft picks every year, the Tigers reload and compete. Les Miles is a great coach and gets the most out of everybody, even when the offense is hurting for talent. WR Brandon LaFell looks to jump start the Tiger attack. The defense should do enough to win the West.

2. Alabama- The Crimson Tide surprised the SEC by winning the West and competing with the Gators for most of the SEC Championship. The defense might be the best in the country. But it is not the defense that concerns me, but the 7 new starters on offense. RB Glenn Coffee graduated as did game manager QB John Parker Wilson leaves too after 4 years. The offense will rely heavily on WR Julio Jones, who is just a sophomore but has amazing talent.

3. Ole Miss- QB Jevan Snead has plenty of hype around him. Since transferring from Texas to avoid holding a clipboard behind Colt McCoy, he has even been part of Heisman hopeful talk this off season. Underrated RB Dexter McCluster leads the running attack to balance the offense. Snead may leave this year for the NFL (maybe not to avoid the McCoy-Bradford-Tebow QB battle) but Houston Nutt has this team on the way to winning the SEC West soon enough.

4. Arkansas- Head Coach Bobby Petrino tries to have Hog fans forget last year as the Razorbacks missed out on a bowl. Michigan transfer QB Ryan Mallet (second best QB prospect out of high school) tries to lead the offense back to a bowl. RB Michael Smith is only 5'7'' but dominates games and should only get better with a passing attack in front of him. DT Malcolm Sheppard is a tad small at defensive tackle but is dominant.

5. Auburn- Gene Chizik was not a great coach at Iowa State but will get his shot at Auburn. Last year was a tough one for Auburn after Tiger fans have taken a lot already (national championship snub, offensive turmoil). It is only going to get worse, as the Tigers will miss a bowl game and are at least two years from contending. They need to find an identity on offense.

6. Mississippi State- Sylvester Crooms had this team looking up after a bowl berth but came crashing down soon after and was let go. RB Anthony Dixon is one of the best in the SEC but the team needs more talent around him to do well and make a bowl. An tough non conference (Houston, Georgia Tech) makes things worse for the Bulldogs. Maybe Dan Mullen can have this team in a bowl and sustain the success.

SEC Championship game: Florida over LSU

Corbitt's Gutsy Guarantee: Florida will win the national title. Tebow and Urban Meyer has this team pumped for another title run and has all the depth and talent to keep up with any team in the nation. They even held Oklahoma to only 14 points, something no one else can claim. They may not go undefeated, but will be lethal in January nonetheless.

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