As impossible as it seems, the nation’s quarterback obsession still is blossoming.

There seems to be no saturation point for the enjoyment of college football’s tremendous offenses.

Still, the best conference in the country pays an exorbitant amount of money to the defensive assistants. Four of the nation’s eight assistant coaches set to make at least $1 million in 2015 are SEC defensive coordinators.

As such, succeeding with the inherently difficult challenge of developing a dominant college defense may be as valuable as ever. SEC coaching staffs are drenched with high-end names on that side of the football.

We’ve identified the 10 best entering the 2015 season.

Others Considered: South Carolina co-defensive coordinator Jon Hoke, Missouri defensive coordinator Barry Odom, Alabama defensive backs coach Mel Tucker, Auburn defensive line coach Rodney Garner, Mississippi State defensive coordinator Manny Diaz, LSU defensive coordinator Kevin Steele.

10. Tennessee defensive coordinator John Jancek: He’s not an SEC superstar, nor is he being paid seven figures as an assistant coach. But he’s one of the conference’s most experienced coordinators, first earning the title at Wayne State in 1992. And he’s generated some under-the-radar success at Georgia, Cincinnati and then last season with the Vols, turning true freshman Derek Barnett into a superstar and building one of the best all-around defenses in the East Division. If the team gets decent play at middle linebacker, Tennessee’s 2015 defense could be one of the country’s best.

9. LSU defensive line coach Ed Orgeron: After doing a nice job as USC’s interim coach and hoping to get another shot at a big-time job for more than one year, settling into a position-coach title has to feel like a let-down for Orgeron. But he’s a perfect Louisiana pit bull. And he seems to have evolved into a better coach than he was during his last SEC West stint (Ole Miss, 2005-07). The Tigers need him to work some magic, as the team lost several of its most capable pass rushers from a group that didn’t put much pressure on opposing quarterbacks to begin with.

8. Florida defensive coordinator Geoff Collins: The coaching headlines in Starkville centered around whether Dan Mullen would remain (he did, for a nice raise). Meanwhile, Collins snuck out the back door to join coach Jim McElwain’s new Florida staff. A big part of the Bulldogs’ extended rise to No. 1 in the country last season, Collins has to be thrilled to pair his aggression with some top-flight defensive backs like the ones that remain in Gainesville.

7. Ole Miss defensive line coach Chris Kiffin: A tremendous recruiter and a key cog in the blueprint of the Landshark defense, Kiffin doesn’t get mentioned in the same sentence as the SEC’s premier defensive coordinators. But don’t let his title fool you.’s “National Recruiter of the Year” in 2013 has taken after his father as a juggernaut defensive coach. Under his leadership, the defensive line propelled a unit among the nation’s leaders in touchdowns allowed and takeaways in 2014.

6. Arkansas defensive coordinator Robb Smith: Arkansas’ running game gets big-time credit, but it wasn’t very good in SEC games last season (4.0 yards per carry). How, then, did the Razorbacks crush LSU and Ole Miss and come so close to winning 10 games? That would be Smith, who quietly made some crucial contributions at Rutgers under Greg Schiano. Outside of Trey Flowers, last year’s unit entered the season as a no-name bunch. By the end of the year, the front seven was playing as well as any team in the country. Once the nation realizes that the team’s defensive success is more a product of Smith than the departed Bermuda Triangle, he’ll get the credit he deserves.

5. Georgia defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt: It’s taken him more than a year, but Pruitt finally may have constructed a championship defense. I’m in the minority, but I think Georgia’s lack of a conference title has been more about holes in the defense than about coach Mark Richt’s inability to win big games. Pruitt has molded what once was a wobbly secondary and constructed the fiercest collection of pass-rushing linebackers in the SEC. He’s come a long way since Nick Saban scooped him away from Hoover (Ala.) High School in 2007, and this year could be his coming-out party nationally.

4. Missouri defensive line coach Craig Kuligowski: You want loyalty? Kuligowski has remained a member of coach Gary Pinkel’s staff for more than 23 years. That’s in spite of getting passed over for a raise, an opportunity he’s more than earned. You want “what have you done for me lately?” How about developing back-to-back Defensive Player of the Year winners, four NFL draft picks in two years and a rare five-star signee? Longevity, you say? Kuligowski’s history of producing pro talent goes back much further than Kony Ealy and Michael Sam. Mizzou has popularized its defensive line in a way that perhaps only Arkansas’ offensive line can match in terms of in-the-trenches respect and love.

3. Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart: The Tide defenses have gone from historically good to occasionally vulnerable. The emergence of up-tempo offenses and true dual-threat quarterbacks have challenged Alabama’s system, forcing the team to veer away from situational specialists in favor of every-down players. A dip in the secondary’s quality of play also has hurt. But Smart continues to churn out the nation’s most consistent, elite run defense. And with a burgeoning collection of talented young corners, Alabama’s defense could be in line for a bounce-back year.

2. Texas A&M defensive coordinator John Chavis: Unlike our No. 1, Chavis isn’t much of a recruiter. On the field, though, his intense personality connects well to first-rate SEC defensive players. The leap from LSU to Texas A&M never was fully explained. But we’re excited to see a) how quickly Chavis can turn this unit into a physical group that holds its own against the run and b) how good the Aggies can be by pairing that offense with Chavis. His aggressive, one-gap system along the defensive line suits this team’s personnel well and should ignite more takeaways and negative plays, which is what a team like A&M needs.

1. Auburn defensive coordinator Will Muschamp: He’s not the assistant coach version of a deity. It’s possible to score — and score big — on his defenses (see: Alabama in 2014). But there’s a reason the Tigers will pay him $1.6 million as a coordinator this season. He’s one of the most proven defensive coaches in the country, excelling at LSU, Auburn (previously), Texas and Florida. He’s an excellent recruiter. His “Buck” position creates consistent havoc. His defensive backs are physical and talented. And, in 2015, he should benefit from a) extra motivation from the way it ended in Gainesville and b) a huge boost in Auburn’s defensive personnel.