As Phil Steele's annual list of preseason all-conference teams continues to get released, it was just a matter of time until it was the SEC's turn. Well, the list is out in PDF form and their are ten Gators on it. Eleven if you want to count Andre Debose twice, who made the list at two different positions.
The Gators placed one on the first-team, five on the second-team, two on the third team and four on the fourth-team. While up there with the top teams in the conference in terms of total numbers, the lack of first-team members is glaring considering that just a few years ago the Gators used to dominate the list.
And people tell me that change is a good thing.
More on how the Gators fared after the jump.
- Caleb Sturgis (first-team K)
- Sharrif Floyd (second-team DT)
- Jelani Jenkins (second-team LB)
- Jonathan Bostic (second-team LB)
- Matt Elam (second-team S)
- Xavier Nixon (third-team OT)
- Andre Debose (third-team KR)
- Debose (fourth-team WR)
- Jordan Reed (fourth-team TE)
- Jon Halapio (fourth-team OG)
- Dominique Easley (forth-team DE)
As you can see, most people expect the Gators to have a pretty good defense. I'm also pretty sure that most of us don't expect the defense to be an issue at all either. Especially with the influx of size over the offseason.
What amazes me however, and just goes to show you how far the Gators have dropped in terms of skill position players, is the the fact that only Debose made the list at either RB or WR. Remember the days when we used to dominate those positions?
If you're interested in how the other SEC teams fared: (Just total numbers)
Alabama: 11 All-SEC picks
Arkansas: 12 All-SEC picks
Auburn: 7 All-SEC picks
Kentucky: 2 All-SEC picks
Georgia: 10 All-SEC picks
Tennessee: 6 All-SEC picks
Vanderbilt: 2 All-SEC picks
Ole Miss: 4 All-SEC picks
Miss State: 5 All-SEC picks
Missouri: 6 All-SEC picks
Texas A&M: 7 All-SEC picks
LSU: 17 All-SEC picks
South Carolina: 6 All-SEC picks
In comparison with the other top-teams in the SEC, the Gators are right at about the average. Behind the expected SEC and/or National Championship contenders in Alabama, LSU, Georgia and Arkansas but above the scrubs of among others: Auburn, Missouri, Texas A&M and Tennessee.
With relation to all of that, I'm okay with the list. It appears as if Phil Steele is yet again going with the grain and coming up with the safe play. And at this point, that's all right. It's only late May.