We’re more than halfway through the season and I’m feeling more confident in what I’m seeing from the SEC. So...what the heck, let’s make some big moves and shake up the rankings. I’m sure you all here at Rock M will appreciate the new configurations of the tiers.
Oh. Oh boy. I did it. I did that thing where I put this website’s namesake team in a good position compared to the rest of the conference. But hey, can you blame me? The offense put together an excellent performance, the defense was made uncomfortable but rose to the occasion to make some big plays and stifle (for three quarters) an offense that has been getting better each week.
Georgia had one of the unluckiest losses in the conference this year, out-losing a drunken slapping match against South Carolina. Unlucky losses don’t diminish your overall quality in my view, so Georgia stays in Tier I (for now). Georgia is annoyingly low-risk in its offensive approach so they can be beaten on any given weekend, but...they just lost at home to an unranked team: if they’re not woken up and pissed off going forward then they have some real problems. They certainly won’t overlook any team for the rest of they year and probably won’t lose again for the rest of the year.
Alabama and LSU are not only the class of the SEC, but of the nation as well. They are easily a safe 1 & 2 on a collision course for November 9th.
I should put Florida in Tier I. I know I should. I also should not have dropped Auburn one tier during their bye week. But I can’t help it: the last view is of the Tigers being held listless by a Gators team that just got shredded by LSU. I’m sure I’ll take one (or both) of these teams and push them back up to Tier I before the year is over, but right now these two are fallen contenders that can get back to the top with a few good performances.
A&M is talented enough to not be in Tier III, but just have too tough of a schedule to see it at this point. They’re staying in Tier II for now based purely off of their ability to play an incredibly tough schedule close.
It’s getting really crowded in the SEC suburbs. I can see 4 of these teams getting to a bowl, but Mississippi State is trending down while Tennessee might have taken too long to start playing competent ball. South Carolina was always going to be much better than its record, but they’re not all of a sudden reliable giant killers just because they took down Georgia. Ole Miss’ offense is hitting its stride while Kentucky might have found its best quarterback on the roster out of it’s second-string receiver. These are all dangerous teams because they are all SEC teams, but — like I’ve said in previous iterations — the goal of this tier is to get to a bowl and build toward next year.
Credit to Arkansas for giving Kentucky a fight. Credit to Vanderbilt for giving UNLV its first ever road win against an SEC team, its first P5 win since 2008, and giving a G5 team the ability to play the entire 4th quarter under garbage-time rules against a P5 team. Thanks for the memories, Derek Mason. You had a good run at Vanderbilt, but the Commodores will be under new management by the end of the year, possibly before.