SEC Power Poll Ballot, Week 8

1. Alabama

The default No. 1 team until they lose, though they easily could have lost to Ole Miss this past weekend.

2. Florida

The win over LSU stands next to Alabama’s win over Georgia as one of the two most impressive of the season so far.

3. Georgia

The Bulldogs have at least beaten a couple of decent teams, something LSU has only done once in beating South Carolina.

4. LSU

The defense will never be at its full potential without Ricky Jean-Francois, kinda like how last year it was never itself after the chop block on Glenn Dorsey until the title game.

5. Vanderbilt

What happens when your 5-7 all lose to better teams? They stay in the same order, that’s what.

6. South Carolina

Once again, so close and yet so far. It pains me a little bit to see Spurrier struggle, but at the same time, what caused the man to lose his recruiting touch with QBs and receivers?

7. Ole Miss

The best 3-4 team in America.

8. Kentucky

A last-minute escape over the admittedly suddenly-frisky Razorbacks doesn’t move you up in my poll.

9. Auburn

If any team needed a bye week, it was this one. You would think with the extra time they could pick something on offense and stick with it, but we’ll see.

10. Arkansas

I remember some Arkansas fans in the offseason saying not to worry about the running game because of Michael Smith, just worry about the rest of the team. They were dead right.

11. Tennessee

They didn’t get Croom‘d or anything, but Wyoming seems like the only sure win left on the schedule. Going bowling is not guaranteed.

12. Mississippi State

The game against Tennessee was a lot closer than the score indicates, but this team is still hopeless. I would not be shocked if they lost to MTSU this weekend.

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3 Responses to SEC Power Poll Ballot, Week 8

  1. gamecock man says:

    Spurrier’s recruiting touch with QBs and receivers is fine. Chris Smelley and Stephen Garcia were both highly rated QBs, and while Smelley hasn’t panned out, Garcia looks to be a quality player. Similarly, we had one of the best WR classes in the country in 2006. We’re set at these positions for the next few years.

    The question is, why can’t he recruit or coach the offensive line? Even with all the protection problems we’ve had the past two years, we only have two current commitments for linemen, and only one of them looks like someone who can be a major difference in the SEC. Tailback has also been a problem for us, although a lot of our TBs were actually highly rated out of high school.

    For some reason, Spurrier has recruited defense quite well. We have another class loaded with defensive talent coming in this year. We’ll be known as CB U before the end of Spurrier’s reign.

  2. year2 says:

    Maybe, but even when Spurrier “missed” on a QB at Florida (pretty much anyone outside of Matthews, Wuerffel and Grossman), they still were good enough to make and hang around the NFL for a while (Doug Johnson, Jesse Palmer). Terry Dean is really the only guy who falls in with Smelley, and I don’t know about Garcia yet. He’s shown some flashes, but we’ll see.

    And at receiver, Sidney Rice and Kenny McKinley are really the only two who would play frequently during most of Spurrier’s Florida years. Where’s the Jack Jacksons, the Jacquez Greens, the Riedel Anthonys and Ike Hilliards? I’d settle for even finding a Taylor Jacobs or a Travis McGriff. Maybe the young crop of guys can grow into that, but there was never a time where a tight end led the Gators in receptions by more than 10 like what the Gamecocks have right now.

    You’re right about offensive linemen, but he’s been known to deal with deficiencies there before with the right skill position players. The 2001 team was Spurrier’s second or third-best, but the 2002 Gators with nearly the same guys had an awful time blocking for anything. Part of that was Grossman letting himself go, but part of it had to with how well Spurrier dealt with the line in 2001. He had the quarterback, receivers, and rushers to do it. He just doesn’t have them now.

  3. O-town Gator says:

    Good points dave; also, where Doug Johnson and Jesse Palmer were concerned Spurrier was able to utilize the two-QB system by rotating Johnson with Noah Brindise and Rex Grossman with Jesse Palmer, so he’s been able to make good use out of each Qb’s skillset.

    As far as the comparison between the 2001 and 2002 Florida teams, it was clearly a matter of coaching. As we well know, Zook was not a disciplinarian and Grossman, IMO, took advantage of that fact as did the others. Also, Zook had no clue on how to best utilize the talent he had at hand that he inherited from SOS and generate an effective offense, NOR did he even think to make necessary adjustments to get his offense to function as it should have. So much for one of the favorite Zook-apologist excuses of “Spurrier left the cupboard bare” which was not true at all. In addition, Steve Spurrier was a good gametime strategist while he was at UF compared to Zook, who appeared clueless way too many times.

    Gamecock Man is also spot-on in mentioning SOS’ good recruiting on defense; this is where the Gamecocks are at their strongest right now. If I were an NFL scout one of his players who I’d be very interested in is Captain Munnerlyn, especially if I had a need to rebuild my secondary.

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