Ranking every SEC team's rivalries
While this week represents the end of the 2014 college football regular season, no doubt a sad occurrence, it brings us a joyous moment in time: rivalry week.
Rivalries are the best part of college football, complete with (usually) good-natured sports hate, student body pranks and fantastic traditions. Every SEC team has its share of rivals, both within the conference and out. We broke down each team’s top three rivals, with many of them squaring off this weekend.
1. Auburn: The Iron Bowl needs no explanation, as it’s one of the most heated rivalries in college football.
2. LSU: This one has picked up steam ever since former LSU coach Nick Saban took over in Tuscaloosa.
3. Tennessee: Bear Bryant made this rivalry a priority in his day, and it still stands today.
1. LSU: The battle for the Golden Boot has picked up steam in the last decade and was formerly played during rivalry week.
2. Texas A&M: The Razorbacks got to renew their old Southwest Conference showdown with the Aggies when A&M came to the SEC.
3. Ole Miss: This border war picked up steam when Arkansas joined the SEC in 1992.
1. Alabama: Which side of the Iron Bowl rivalry someone falls on determines a lot about their life in Alabama. What more needs to be said?
2. LSU: These two programs have plenty of animosity built up between them, making for fiery on-field showdowns.
3. Georgia: The Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry is almost a dead heat after 122 meetings.
1. Florida State: The Florida state championship game has featured plenty of memorable moments over its long history.
2. Georgia: The Bulldogs had been dominating this matchup for a half-decade before Florida pulled an upset this year.
3. Tennessee: One of the best rivalries since the SEC expanded in 1992 has featured legendary names and great finishes.
1. Georgia Tech: Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate always makes for a good inter-conference battle this time of year.
2. Florida: The World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party tends to get wild, both in stands and on the field.
3. Auburn: This heated, historical rivalry hasn’t seen either team take a huge advantage in the series.
1. Louisville: The Wildcats’ in-state rivals, from the hardwood to the gridiron.
2. Tennessee: The regional rivalry between the Volunteers and Wildcats also extends to basketball, but it’s underrated for its intensity on the football field.
3. Vanderbilt: Another regional matchup, although this one is between two teams that don’t have much in common other than playing in the SEC.
1. Alabama: There’s a whole lot of vitriol toward the Crimson Tide in Baton Rouge. Just rewind to a chant that went up earlier this month for proof.
2. Auburn: This under-the-radar rivalry has plenty of on-field hate; LSU fans aren’t soon to forget Auburn smoking cigars on the Tiger Stadium field.
3. Florida: The Gators and Tigers meet annually and, in the last 20 years, almost always face off as ranked teams.
1. Ole Miss: The Egg Bowl is one of the most under-appreciated and heated rivalries in all of college football.
2. LSU: Mississippi State struck a big blow in this lopsided rivalry this year with an upset at night in Death Valley.
3. Alabama: The geographically closest SEC schools square off annually in the SEC West.
1. Kansas: Mizzou hasn’t met their border rivals on the gridiron since coming to the SEC, but the Jayhawks are still No. 1 for the Tigers.
2. Arkansas: The newly established Battle Line Rivalry should give us one of the most exciting games of rivalry week.
3. South Carolina: The Battle of Columbia has included several thrillers since Mizzou moved to the SEC.
1. Mississippi State: The Egg Bowl might not have had much national prominence as of late, but the nasty rivalry is in the spotlight this year.
2. LSU: One of the SEC’s trophy games, the Magnolia Bowl dates back 120 years, although LSU has dominated the series.
3. Arkansas: Another old school rivalry was spiced up last decade over the Houston Nutt fiasco.
1. Clemson: The Palmetto Bowl, one of the oldest rivalries in the sport, is also among the most spirited.
2. Georgia: This border war has picked up steam in recent years as the Gamecocks have risen to prominence in the SEC.
3. Florida: Steve Spurrier’s presence in Columbia elevated a game that Florida previously took glee in dominating.
1. Georgia: Tennessee and Georgia didn’t often meet on the field before SEC expansion, but just about every game was a battle until then. Since, they’ve played their fair share of thrillers.
2. Florida: Another rivalry that has picked up in intensity and frequency since the two schools were put into the SEC East together in 1992.
3. Alabama: Tennessee and Alabama have been playing for more than 100 years, although the Vols don’t hand out victory cigars anymore.
1. Texas: No matter what these two schools say about not caring, you know they’re still secretly in love-hate.
2. Arkansas: Two former Southwest Conference teams have renewed their longstanding rivalry in the SEC.
3. LSU: Another ancient rivalry renewed in the SEC has provided some exciting matchups since A&M came to the SEC.
1. Tennessee: The Volunteers have dominated this in-state showdown pretty much since inception.
2. Kentucky: A regional rivalry within the SEC East, once again Vanderbilt is way on the short end of the stick.
3. Ole Miss: Vanderbilt’s cross-divisional rivalry is the closest of all their rivalry series.