Week Seven SEC Power Poll Ballot: The Middle is Clear, at Any Rate

I’m really going to be glad when November 5 gets here, so we can quit guessing which team is the best in the SEC country. Until then, this is how the conference appears to have sorted itself out to me:

1. Alabama Crimson Tide (7-0 overall, 4-0 SEC): Choosing between Alabama and Louisiana State is like choosing a president in an election in which both parties nominated someone really good. You know, if it ever happened.

2. LSU Tigers (7-0, 4-0): Tennessee could’ve used 13 men on defense the whole game, and it wouldn’t have mattered.

3. Arkansas Razorbacks (5-1, 1-1): On a weekend on which no one except the top two looked good, the Hogs helped themselves by having an open date.

4. South Carolina Gamecocks (6-1, 4-1): On a weekend on which no team in the SEC East played well on the road, survival and advancement were all that mattered, but how huge will the loss of Marcus Lattimore prove to be?

5. Auburn Tigers (5-2, 3-1): I love the fact that the clash between offensive geniuses Gus Malzahn and Charlie Weis produced a final score that looked like it came from the ALCS.

6. Georgia Bulldogs (5-2, 4-1): I promise you I did everything humanly possible to avoid ranking the Red and Black this high.

7. Florida Gators (4-3, 2-3): I’m begging you to give me a reason to bump them up a notch during the open date. Seriously, anybody. Hello? Hello? Is this thing on?

8. Vanderbilt Commodores (3-3, 1-3): It could’ve been worse. Erk Russell would’ve head-butted James Franklin straight to the ground, and he’d’ve come up looking like Gus Fring in his "Breaking Bad" death scene.

9. Tennessee Volunteers (3-3, 0-3): Really, you could pretty much throw these last four in a sack and pull them out in any order. I’m listing the Big Orange first among the worst because I don’t want to get an ugly phone call from Barbara Dooley.

10. Mississippi St. Bulldogs (3-4, 0-4): They may be the best team ever to start 0-4 in SEC play.

11. Kentucky Wildcats (2-4, 0-3): Big Blue dodged the cellar with a shrewdly-scheduled bye week, which allowed the rest of us to forget how bad they are. (Incidentally, a football open date the week of Midnight Madness? We see what you did there, Kentucky!)

12. Mississippi Rebels (2-4, 0-3): This team is the real reason Quentin Compson killed himself.

As always, your feedback is welcome in the comments below.

Go ‘Dawgs!

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