Previous Power Rankings:

Week 8 was an anomaly in the fact it was blowout Saturday. Just one game was close — Georgia vs. Arkansas, while all the rest were complete mismatches, with teams melting down in epic proportions.

Following the bye week, is Mississippi State still the top ranked SEC team? Did Ole Miss close any ground? 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 8, according to our staff:

Projected out of a bowl game

14. Vanderbilt Commodores (2-5)
13. Tennessee Volunteers (3-4)
12. Florida Gators (3-3)

Vanderbilt returns Saturday following the bye against Missouri. The Commodores may not win a game for the rest of the season…Tennessee suffered another big loss Saturday against the No. 3 Ole Miss Rebels, and the Vols were held to zero rushing yards and gave up nine sacks and four turnovers. Ugly…With Florida’s loss to Missouri and the Week 1 cancellation against Idaho, does Florida even make a bowl game? The bigger question is how long Florida will wait to fire Will Muschamp.

Projected in a bowl game

11. South Carolina Gamecocks (4-3)
10. Kentucky Wildcats (5-2)

At this point, South Carolina should make a bowl game, but it’s not going to be easy with the SEC’s worst defense. This week’s game against Auburn will be interesting for many reasons…Kentucky was brought back to reality following Saturday’s loss to LSU. That’s the type of program and the type of athletes Mark Stoops wants to build and recruit in Lexington. Despite the loss, the Cats are still ahead of schedule.

New rivals

9. Arkansas Razorbacks (3-4)
8. Missouri Tigers (5-2)

Is Arkansas better than South Carolina and Kentucky, two teams that will likely make bowl games? The Hogs are a weird team. One week you think they could win the SEC East, and then they lay an egg against Georgia. Arkansas is projected out of a bowl game, and Missouri may be the best shot for Bret Bielema to avoid going 0-16 in his first two seasons in SEC play…Missouri isn’t a very good football team, but they sit 5-2 and still in the SEC East race despite losing the head-to-head against Georgia. Is Maty Mauk’s starting job in jeopardy at all?

Georgia representin’ for the East

7. Texas A&M Aggies (5-3)
6. LSU Tigers (6-2)
5. Georgia Bulldogs (6-1)

Texas A&M went from getting four first place votes in the AP Top 25 to losing three straight. Who’s to blame? Defensive coordinator Mark Snyder’s days are numbered. The Aggies will be lucky to finish with eight wins…LSU is getting hotter, and next week’s game against Ole Miss is much more interesting than we thought two weeks ago. The Tigers won’t win the SEC West, but they could wreck Ole Miss’ or Alabama’s season…Georgia may be the country’s biggest College Football Playoff sleeper. With or without Todd Gurley, UGA will win the SEC East and may have the easiest road of any main SEC contender.

Yellowhammer State

4. Auburn Tigers (5-1)
3. Alabama Crimson Tide (6-1)

Auburn returns against South Carolina Saturday following the bye week. The Tigers start a brutal stretch that consists of USC, Ole Miss, Texas A&M, Georgia and Alabama. It’ll be tough for AU to navigate through that…Alabama brought the hammer against Texas A&M Saturday, and that type of win could rally the team and help propel them to get really hot down the stretch. Alabama is right back into College Football Playoff mix.

STILL undefeated

2. Ole Miss Rebels (7-0)
1. Mississippi State Bulldogs (6-0)

In the voting among our staff, Mississippi State actually increased its lead in the power rankings over Ole Miss this week. The Rebels hammered Tennessee, and the defense flexed its dominant muscles again…Mississippi State returns Saturday against Kentucky following the bye week, and the Bulldogs have an overall favorable schedule down the home stretch. Games against Alabama and Ole Miss will determine who wins the SEC West.