My SEC Power Poll ballot. Final results at Team Speed Kills on Wednesday.
1. Alabama: In 2008, they ran the table in the regular season with a great defense and a serviceable QB. This season, their defense is still dominant (3rd in the SEC in scoring defense, 1st in total defense) and a QB to match (Greg McElroy leads SEC starters in efficiency with 175.2). With a decent schedule, only at Ole Miss and home for LSU and Tennessee, Alabama is now the clear favorite in the West.
2. Florida: Alabama gets the edge over Florida because Bama's QB is not experiencing headaches from getting KTFO. What is amazing to me is the split between UF fans on how healthy Tim Tebow is. Some (like me) would rather have Tebow sit out LSU, because odds are Tebow will pretend he is healthy when he isn't. And, we like John Brantley enough to give the kid the ball. Others think Tebow just bunked his head and try to diagnose Tebow's concussion on the time they bunked their own head. I don't know what these people are more concerned with; Tebow's long term health or beating LSU. Thankfully, all of us are brain surgeons and physicians and we know what we're talking about.
3. LSU: Between the Washington and Mississippi State games, I have no idea what to make of LSU. Are they 4-0 because they are good or because it's convenient? Georgia will provide a nice test before the Florida game.
4. Auburn: 2, 1, 2, 2. That's Auburn's SEC ranks in scoring, total offense, rushing offense and passing offense. Beating Monte Kiffin will easily get them ranked.
6. South Carolina: They could have beat Georgia on the road and defeated Ole Miss in the upset everyone saw coming. With South Carolina State this week and Kentucky next, the Gamecocks will be 5-1 when they go to Bama.
7. Tennessee: Call it East Division bias, but I think the Vols could beat any team in the league, as long as they run and play stout defense. Of course, these guys struggled against Ohio, but college kids play down to their competition.
8. Mississippi: Jevon Snead can't be a Heisman contender when he is 9th in SEC passing efficiency.
9. Mississippi State: I put them above Arky because of a more solid defense. The Bulldogs are also 4th in SEC rushing offense and 12th in passing, so Dan Mullen is halfway to making a good team.
10. Arkansas: At the end of the month, they could easily be 0-5 in the league when they play Auburn, at Ole Miss and at Florida. But they should defeat Texas A&M in Jerry Jones' Football Palace Saturday.
11. Kentucky: I know this was not their intent, but Kentucky's top play this season will be Tebow slamming his head against an offensive lineman.
12. Vanderbilt: Vandy is getting 9.5 for their game at Ole Miss. Vandy is mediocre defensively. Hell yes, I'm taking Vandy for the cover.