Ranking the SEC’s coaching jobs is certainly no easy task, but CBS Sports’ Tom Fornelli took on the tall feat.

Right now in the SEC landscape, some jobs are certainly better than others. The difference between the elite jobs and the “other SEC jobs” is quite large. My theory on coaching jobs in general is that there are more elite jobs than there are coaches in the current landscape of college football. That’s why we see coaches like Ed Orgeron getting hired at LSU and Jim McElwain being hired at Florida. They are good coaches with different strengths, but they aren’t elite coaches for elite programs.

Perhaps you disagree with my theory, but there are only five elite coaches in college football: Nick Saban, Urban Meyer, Jim Harbaugh, Dabo Swinney and Jimbo Fisher.

Specifically in the SEC, elite coaching jobs abound when compared to others around the country. Alabama, Georgia, Florida, LSU and Tennessee quickly come to mind, and although the recruiting footprint and landscape has changed, the elite jobs haven’t too much.

Fornelli explained how he calculated the rankings:

What I’m trying to do in these rankings is view each job from a neutral point of view. I considered many different factors when trying to figure out which job is the “best.” The tradition of a school was a factor, as was its amount of success, and how the school is positioned for future success.

Throw in some recruiting — not only the recruiting base, but the level of difficulty involved in recruiting players to the school — expectations and the loyalty of the fan base, and I think I came to some pretty reasonable conclusions.

Here are CBS Sports’ SEC coaching job rankings for 2017:

1. Alabama Crimson Tide
2. LSU Tigers
3. Georgia Bulldogs
4. Florida Gators
5. Auburn Tigers
6. Tennessee Volunteers
7. Texas A&M Aggies
8. Ole Miss Rebels
9. South Carolina Gamecocks
10. Arkansas Razorbacks
11. Missouri Tigers
12. Kentucky Wildcats
13. Mississippi State Bulldogs
14. Vanderbilt Commodores

Few takeaways:

  • It’s hard to argue with the top four jobs: Alabama, LSU, Georgia and Florida, and one can justify ranking those in any order.
  • A program like Tennessee with so much rich history and tradition isn’t even a top five job in the conference, according to CBS Sports. That’s one program that has been challenged by the changing recruiting landscape, as the state of Tennessee isn’t as fertile as other states. However, Tennessee would rank No. 5 if I were putting this ranking together.
  • While Mississippi State’s overall job is ranked No. 13, Dan Mullen is the SEC’s No. 2 coach behind Nick Saban. I would argue the attractiveness of the MSU job has drastically increased since Mullen was hired. Dak Prescott certainly added to that in recent history.