SEC Power Rankings: Week 10
Previous Power Rankings:
We’ve officially hit the homestretch, and SEC cannibalism is about to kick into overdrive.
Week 10 is in the books, and just four regular season weekends remain, as teams continue to jockey with both divisions still up for grabs.
Undefeated Mississippi State is still the SEC’s top ranked team, but the Yellowhammer State’s two juggernauts remain right on the Bulldogs’ heels. MSU, Alabama and Auburn are the only three Southeastern Conference teams that can compete for the College Football Playoff.
Every week, SDS will poll its writers, and we’ll provide a collective SEC power rankings, instead of it coming from just one writer with one impression of every team. Here are the SEC power rankings after Week 10, according to our staff:
Projected out of a bowl game
14. Vanderbilt Commodores (3-6)
13. South Carolina Gamecocks (4-5)
Vanderbilt showed signs of life in its win over Old Dominion, and quarterback Johnny McCrary threw for 281 yards and five touchdowns. Is he the future?…South Carolina blew a double-digit fourth quarter lead for the third time this season, and Steve Spurrier was virtually speechless after the game. The Gamecocks had the game sewed up, but they let the lead slip away in the closing minutes and eventually lost in overtime. How long will Spurrier stick around in Columbia? Several are asking that very question right now.
Projected in a bowl game
12. Tennessee Volunteers (4-5)
11. Kentucky Wildcats (5-4)
Tennessee is stumbling and bumbling its way through this season, but the Vols are starting to grow and mature as a team. Being down double digits in the fourth quarter had to have been unsettling for Butch Jones, but his team found a way to get it done in overtime. Jones is now 2-0 against Steve Spurrier, and the Vols are sitting pretty for a bowl game berth, needing to win two of the final three games…Kentucky is still looking for its sixth win of the season, and the game against Georgia Saturday looks winnable. I thought Kentucky would give Missouri a dog fight Saturday, but the Tigers’ stifling defense was too much. Surely, Kentucky can beat one of Georgia, Tennessee or Louisville to close the season and get to a bowl game, right?
Projected out of a bowl game
10. Arkansas Razorbacks (4-5)
Arkansas remains one of the most interesting SEC teams. The Hogs give every team a dogfight, but they just haven’t learned how to win yet. Fresh off taking No. 1 Mississippi State to the wire, the Hogs head into the bye week ahead of a three-game finish that features LSU, Ole Miss and Missouri. Although Arkansas is two wins away from a bowl berth, Bret Bielema’s 0-13 conference record is head-scratching.
Middle of the pack
9. Florida Gators (4-3)
8. Texas A&M Aggies (6-3)
7. Missouri Tigers (7-2)
Florida moves up in this week’s rankings after pummeling Georgia, literally. Where’s that been all season? The Gators rushed for over 400 yards and five touchdowns. Did Will Muschamp save his job, or was Saturday just an anomaly? Either way, Florida is still in the SEC East hunt, and Muschamp bought himself as much time as he needs this season to turn this thing around…Texas A&M looked lackluster against ULM Saturday, but take a step back for a minute. Heading into the season, most thought the Aggies were a 7-5 team, and that’s exactly how things could finish, although Kenny Hill electrified the country with his Week 1 performance against South Carolina. The Aggies’ fast start was fool’s gold…Don’t look now, but Missouri is in the SEC East driver’s seat, and the Tigers have the most favorable schedule down the stretch that features Texas A&M, Tennessee and Arkansas. Are we looking at the back-to-back SEC East Champion Missouri Tigers? It hasn’t been pretty, but the Tigers’ defense is making it happen, in spite of a below average offense.
Out of the College Football Playoff talk
6. Georgia Bulldogs (6-2)
5. Ole Miss Rebels (7-2)
4. LSU Tigers (7-2)
Georgia’s loss to Florida shook up an already messy SEC East, and Mark Richt received one of the worst losses of his career to Will Muschamp, who was sitting on college football’s hottest seat. Georgia’s defense yielded over 400 rushing yards and five rushing touchdowns. That’s the second worst performance in program history. Now, Georgia needs help winning the division down the homestretch…Ole Miss started the season 7-0, but the Rebels have suffered two straight losses to two very good teams. Saturday’s loss to Auburn was a heartbreaker, and losing Laquon Treadwell could handicap an already one-dimensional offense…The LSU Tigers are being rewarded for being arguably college football’s most improved team from Week 1 through Week 10. LSU moved up this week after Ole Miss lost to Auburn, and the Tigers return Saturday against Alabama.
Playoff, division contenders
3. Auburn Tigers (7-1)
2. Alabama Crimson Tide (7-1)
Auburn went on the road in a hostile environment against the best defense in college football and found a way to get a win. That can’t be overstated. It wasn’t that Ole Miss wasn’t at its best; it’s that Auburn beat the Rebels at their best. The Tigers’ offense is starting show signs of how electrifying they finished last season. Don’t look now, but Auburn’s offense is starting to ignite…Alabama enjoyed the week off to hopefully get its banged-up bodies healthy and ready for a trip to Death Valley to play LSU. The Crimson Tide finish the regular season at LSU, but they get both Mississippi State and Auburn at home. Some are wondering if Alabama is the best team in college football, let alone its own division.
1. Mississippi State Bulldogs (8-0)
Mississippi State survived another week in the brutal SEC West gauntlet against Arkansas. Perhaps the Bulldogs haven’t been impressive the last two weeks against the Hogs and Wildcats, but staying unbeaten is never pretty. Saturday’s game against UT Martin is just a tune-up for Alabama in two weeks. Will the Bulldogs drop in the College Football Playoff poll?