5 SEC records that will never be broken
The history of SEC football spans more than 80 years, and in that time there have been more than a few legendary performances and milestone accomplishments logged in the record books.
But while the old adage may say “records are made to be broken,” these five SEC records will likely stand the test of time, some because they’re incomprehensibly outlandish, others because it’s literally mathematically impossible to break them.
Whatever the reason, these five records are the supreme outliers in the conference’s history. Check out the SEC’s unbreakable records below:
MOST CONSECUTIVE SHUTOUTS — Tennessee: 15
Tennessee completed an undefeated run to Robert Neyland’s first national championship in 1938 with five straight shutouts to close the year, including a shutout of then-No. 4 Oklahoma in that year’s Orange Bowl. The Vols didn’t miss a beat when the 1939 season began nearly 10 months later, completing a perfect 10-0 regular season without allowing a single point all year. The shutout streak was eventually snapped in a 14-0 loss to then-No. 3 in a Rose Bowl the Trojans more or less hosted, but the Vols’ 15 straight shutouts will likely never be topped in the modern age of college football.
INTERCEPTIONS THROWN IN A GAME — John Reaves (Florida): 9
We never said these records had to be positive, and this one certainly isn’t. On Nov. 1, 1969, Reaves and his Florida Gators took on the Auburn Tigers in a game Reaves would love to forget but likely never will. It was on that day that Reaves threw nine (!) interceptions in one game, setting an NCAA record in the process. Yes, he did attempt 66 passes, but that’s still a ratio of one interception per every seven attempts. Can you imagine a player attempting only 35 passes and throwing five interceptions in a game today? It wouldn’t happen because that quarterback would get benched before ever having a chance to throw that many picks. For that very reason, it seems almost impossible that any quarterback, SEC or otherwise, could throw 10 interceptions in a single game or even last long enough to throw more than five.
INTERCEPTIONS THROWN IN A SEASON — Kurt Page (Vanderbilt): 29
If you thought Reaves had a bad day back in 1969, try playing that way for an entire season. Former Vanderbilt quarterback Kurt Page knows how that feels as the SEC’s record-holder for most interceptions in a season with 29. That total actually ranks fourth all-time in NCAA history, but the three players with at least 30 picks in a season all achieved the feat (if you want to call it an achievement) in the 1960s and as members of teams playing outside the power conferences. In the modern age of college football, it is wildly unrealistic to expect a quarterback to not get benched upon throwing that many interceptions in a single season. Even if he’s the only scholarship quarterback on the roster, once he hits 25 with games still to play a coach might thing long and hard about playing a walk-on. Vanderbilt doesn’t have the most illustrious football history, but this is a low point even for the Commodores.
MOST BOWL GAMES PLAYED — Alabama: 61
Theoretically it’s possible for Alabama to relinquish this record, but realistically it’s not possible at all. Alabama has played in 61 bowls all-time, and it’s worth noting that although there are now 42 bowl games there were only 12 bowl games as recently as 1985, meaning the Tide often ranked at or near the top of the polls at the conclusion of every season. Texas is in second behind Alabama with 53 bowl appearances, followed by Nebraska (51) as well as Georgia, Tennessee and USC (50 apiece). Alabama would have to go nine straight years without playing in a bowl game, even though 84 of 127 FBS teams will go bowling this season, and Texas would have to reach a bowl in each of those nine seasons for Alabama to give up its belt. If you think Alabama will go nine straight years without a bowl appearance, write me on Twitter and let’s bet on it. I could use a few extra bucks in my wallet.
MOST TIME OF POSSESSION IN ONE QUARTER — Auburn (2006): 15 minutes
This is one of those records that literally can only be tied and can never be broken because, of course, there are only 15 minutes in a quarter and Auburn used all of them in a win over South Carolina in 2006. The Tigers took the opening kickoff, drove for more than eight minutes, settled for a field goal, then recovered an onside kick and drove for another six minutes and change. The quarter ended with the Tigers stopped at the Gamecocks 1 yard line, facing fourth-and-goal to begin the final quarter. Kenny Irons scored to open the fourth quarter, ending Auburn’s time with the ball at nearly 16 minutes off the clock.