After week one of the college football season, here’s the SEC power rankings as determined by, well, this columnist.
Actual point ratings are in parenthesis.
1. Alabama (99.9) – No surprise. The Tide – 48-3 winners last Saturday over San Jose State — lost a ton on defense, but there’s room for error on defense this year given the wattage on the other side of the ball for the defending national champs: Heisman Trophy winner Mark Ingram, Trent Richardson, Greg McElory, Julio Jones and Marquis Maze. Must be nice.
2. Florida (94.2) — The Gators will be fine. John Brantley will be fine. ESPN need not fret about its pet team. Florida’s sloppy 34-12 victory last Saturday over Miami of Ohio won’t be the norm. Florida is way too talented and Urban Meyer is far too maniacal for the Gators to play like that ever again.
3. South Carolina (88.3) – It’s about time South Carolina had an SEC-title contending team. This might be Steve Spurrier’s best team since he ran the fun-and-gun at Florida. It showed last Thursday when the Gamecocks overwhelmed a pretty reputable Southern Miss program. South Carolina wins by two touchdowns over UGA Saturday.
4. Auburn (87.7) — At Auburn’s disposal are Cameron Newton (who ran for 171 yards at quarterback last Saturday), Mario Fannin, Darvin Adams and heralded high school running back Michael Dyer. Good luck SEC defenses.
5. Arkansas (82.1) – Two words: Ryan Mallett.
6. (tie) Georgia (81.5) – The Bulldogs remain the mystery team of the SEC even after its 55-7 victory over sparing partner UL-Lafayette. The Ragin’ Cajuns aren’t good. This week’s opponent, South Carolina, is.
6. (tie) LSU (81.5) – Similar to Florida, LSU didn’t draw rave review after week one with its 30-24 victory over a suspension-decimated North Carolina team.
8. Mississippi State (75.7) – Those other Bulldogs mean business under Dan Mullen. They were tough last year and are ready to win this season as Mullen’s team drilled Memphis in it season opener. The Sept. 25 Georgia-Mississippi State game is a toss-up.
9. Kentucky (70.0) — The Joker Phillips era got off to a good start with a victory over in-state rival Louisville as this hoops school continues to build a decent football program.
10. Tennessee (68.2) – The Volunteers are very inexperienced at quarterback and offensive line but enjoyed a nice 50-0 victory last Saturday, even if it was over UT-Martin. We’ll find what Derek Dooley’s Vols are made of this Saturday against Oregon.
11. Ole Miss (59.2) – The Rebs seemed poised to build on back-to-back nine-win seasons with big-time transfer Jeremiah Masoli … then last Saturday happened. It’s not impossible for Ole Miss to rebound after losing to Division I-AA Jacksonville State. Remember, the 2007 Michigan team that lost to Appalachian State went 9-4. But something drastic has to happen on defense — fast.
12. Vanderbilt (50.0) — Vanderbilt gave a bowl team from last year, Northwestern, a good fight last Saturday, but will likely struggle in the post Bobby Johnson era.