As a series of coaching hires made their way through the SEC East in recent years, it may have been only a matter of time before the strength of the conference shifted a bit away from the West.

SEC Network analyst Greg McElroy said in a meeting with reporters at SEC Media Days that the East has grabbed the momentum and is the stronger division. Last season, the East went 9-5 against the West. McElroy sees the East as the more balanced division, one through seven, than the West.

The East experienced a slow decline since the glory days when Phil Fulmer and Steve Spurrier butted heads in the division. Then, South Carolina had a good run under Spurrier, Georgia was up-and-down with Mark Richt and Missouri won the division twice, but the division for several years represented the weaker half of the conference. While Alabama continues to be the favorite in the West, coaching changes at Ole Miss, Arkansas and Texas A&M have shifted the outlook of those programs.

The East is in the midst of changing as Dan Mullen tries to rebuild Florida, Mark Stoops looks to duplicate the special 2018 season, Georgia aims to reach the top of the championship level, and Barry Odom and Will Muschamp try to turn the corner in their fourth seasons.