Hope you all had a nice Thanksgiving! Want to know how mine went? Well, other than clocking in a total of 30 hours at work during Thanksgiving weekend, it was great! I hate working retail....... Anyway, if any of you follow college football (I'm assuming you do if you're on this site), you probably have heard of this thing called the SEC. No, not the secant type of SEC (math joke!), the one that is short for the "South Eastern Conference".
Now, I'm sure that other than my Grandpa, you've all tuned in to ESPN at one point and noticed how many of the "experts" say that the SEC is the best conference and the best teams all come from there. You know, the teams like Kentucky and Auburn. What's that? You're saying those teams suck? So what if they're a combined 5-19, they're from the SEC, so they can't be bad!
The SEC does have 6 teams ranked in the BCS top ten, so I can see why people would think that. But, I have noticed over the season (and from seasons past), that most of the "big" wins the SEC has are over other SEC teams, hardly any seem to be outside of that. They also seem to play a ton of FCS schools. So, me being a person with waaaay too much time on my hands, I decided to look at the non-conference schedule of each SEC team.
First off, my hunch was right about FCS teams. The SEC as a whole has played 17 FCS schools this year. Yes, that is the most of any conference. And we all know FCS schools aren't as good as FBS teams, and normally get creamed by them. So, the SEC schedules those teams so they can get easy wins, because strength of schedule does not apply to them. Oops, there goes the secret!
So what about FBS teams from other conferences? Well, they have played a total of 39 FBS teams outside their conference. 20 had a winning record, and only 5 of those have won 9 games. Nearly 3/4 of those teams are from the Sun-Belt, which in all seriousness is the Big Sky with bowl games. As a conference, they've beaten 4 ranked teams outside the SEC. Also, just to bash on them some more, of the 56 non conference games the SEC has played, 48 were at home. In fact, the farthest any SEC team has traveled this year for a non-conference game is a whopping 487 miles. Only 1 of Boise's opponents this year is within a 487 mile radius, which was BYU. And that game was still in Boise. I guess the SEC gets carsick or something.
The SEC doesn't do anything outside of their own conference to suggest they're they best. They don't schedule anyone, and don't travel when they do. So how can it be the best conference when the only teams they beat are each other? Really, the only wins the SEC has claim on are other SEC teams, and that somehow makes them the best?Because a few of them win the majority of their conference games? Is it because they have a team that win 10-12 games every year? Well, 6 other conferences have a team that's done that!
To prove that all they do is beat each other, I'll explain what has happened this year. Florida beat Texas A&M, who beat Alabama, who beat LSU, who beat South Carolina, who beat Georgia, who beat Florida, and we're right back to the beginning. And because these 6 teams can all beat each other, that some how makes them the best conference?
And besides that, every conference has around 4 bad teams, giving you around 4 easy wins. So, if your non-conference schedule is easy, that's an 8 win season right there. If you have that, you only have to beat 3 decent teams in your conference to have a good year, which is very doable. Well, that's exactly what the SEC does!
I bet many of you are thinking, "Well Kennedy47, the SEC is good because they've won the past 6 national championships!" Yes that's true. But that doesn't mean I can't look at them and bash the SEC some more! So how about we look at each of those National Championships and then decide?
2011 Championship: Alabama over LSU, 21-0
I'm pretty sure the SEC coaches who voted in the polls put Alabama and LSU at 1 and 2 at the end of the regular season on purpose. Because with 2 teams in the National championship, the SEC got more money than they would if Alabama went to another bowl game. I'm not sure why they need more money, because they aren't using them for plane tickets. Anyway, Not only was that game more boring than a WNBA game, but both were SEC teams, so of course an SEC team was going to win. Unless Chuck Norris got involved, then he would have won by default. Onto the previous year!
2010 Championship: Auburn over Oregon 22-19
Oregon's fast-paced offense is based on being athletically superior than the defense. So it kind of doesn't work when the opposing defense has actual athletes, or even plays defense well. The past 4 teams Oregon has played with a defense really worth a hoot were Stanford this year, LSU last year, Auburn the year before, and Boise 3 years ago. And guess what? They lost all of those games! Also, Auburn had more +300 lb defensive lineman than Oregon had +300 lb offensive lineman. So, Oregon was kind of screwed going into that game. I'm not trying to use the whole "if they played better they would have won" argument, I'm just saying Oregon was not a worthy opponent. Boise State was.
2009 Championship : Alabama Over Texas 37-21
Texas's quarterback, Colt McCoy, played 5 snaps that game. The quarterback who replaced him was a true freshman, Garrett Gilbert. I'm a college freshman right now, and if I had to play 4 quarters of football for the first time ever in my college career against the number 1 team in the country, in the national championship game, I would crap my pants. I'm pretty sure Gilbert did too.
2008: Florida over Oklahoma 24-14
Tim Tebow was in it, so I'll give the SEC this one. Hey, he was good in college!
2007: LSU over Ohio State 38-24
Ohio State somehow made it into the National Championship, even though they already lost to an unranked team. Their quarterback at the time was Todd Boeckman. Who could possibly win a championship with a name like that?
2006: Florida over Ohio State, 41-14
Another Tebow excuse, even if he only touched the ball 8 times. And we all know another team that year should have been in it instead of Florida.
Is it me, or does #68 look like he has to pee?
So the first 3 I guess the SEC has a legit claim over, but the past 3 I don't think they have bragging rights over. One they were guaranteed to win, another they had to beat a bad backup quarterback, and the other was against a team that had no shot. NOT because an SEC team was in it, but Oregon would have lost to almost any good team that year.
Basically, I think the SEC is overrated. Didn't see that coming, now did you? They really have no claim to being the best conference, and shouldn't get votes in the polls just because they're in the SEC, which we all know voters think.
So that's my rant of the week. Have anything else to add about the SEC or college football in general, like how bowl games need to have names tougher than the "Belk Bowl" or the "Education Holiday Bowl". They both exist, look it up if you want.