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2008 SEC Preview - Unit Rankings
South Carolina CB Captain Munnerlyn
South Carolina CB Captain Munnerlyn
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Aug 3, 2008


2008 CFN Preview - SEC Unit Rankings from top to bottom

2008 CFN SEC Preview

Unit Rankings

Team Previews & Predictions
East Florida | Georgia | Kentucky | South Carolina | Tennessee | Vanderbilt 
West Alabama | Arkansas | Auburn | LSU | Ole Miss | Miss State

- 2008 CFN SEC Preview
- CFN All-SEC Team & Top 30 Players

- SEC Team-by-Team Capsules

-
SEC Unit Rankings

- SEC Schedules & Predictions

Offenses
1. Florida
There are a lot of health concerns, but if and when everyone is 100%, this will be one college football's most devastating attacks. It all starts with Heisman winner Tim Tebow, who likely won't put up the stats he cranked out last year but could be a better passer as the coaching staff looks to keep its star fresh by limiting his workload. There will be more of a quarterback rotation and far more help from a four-headed monster at running back led by Kestahn Moore and USC transfer Emmanuel Moody to go along with speedsters Chris Rainey and Brandon James. Percy Harvin is one of the nation's most devastating playmakers, while the rest of the receiving corps should be unstoppable. The key will be a line with two very good, but very banged up seniors, Phil Trautwein and Jim Tartt, leading a talented group of underclassmen.

2.
Georgia
3. Tennessee
4. LSU
5. Auburn
6. Alabama
7. Arkansas
8. Ole Miss
9. South Carolina
10. Mississippi State
11. Kentucky
12. Vanderbilt

Quarterbacks  
1. Florida
Everything possible will be done to make sure Tim Tebow doesn't carry the ball 210 times again. While he'll still be the fearless runner he always was, the running backs should take away more of the workload and Cam Newton and John Brantley will be in the rotation more often to get some meaningful work in. Yes, there is a drop-off from a Heisman winner to two unproven backups, but the reserves can play. There's a reason they're playing for Florida.

2.
Georgia
3. Ole Miss
4. Tennessee
5. Alabama
6. South Carolina
7. LSU
8. Auburn
9. Kentucky
10. Arkansas
11. Vanderbilt
12. Mississippi State

Running Backs
1. Georgia
There's a slew of great young running back talent to get fired up about, three good fullbacks to use in a variety of situations, and a future top draft pick in Knowshon Moreno. As always, Georgia has more than enough options to fill in the gaps if something goes wrong, and there's no reason the ground game should be anything other than unstoppable no matter who's toting the rock. The only thing missing is a sure-thing No. 2 back with a proven track record, but remember, it's not like Moreno was a proven commodity going into last year.

2. Tennessee
3. Mississippi State
4. LSU
5. Florida
6. Auburn
7. Alabama
8. Arkansas
9. Kentucky
10. Ole Miss
11. South Carolina
12. Vanderbilt

Receivers
1. Florida
From the speed and quickness of Percy Harvin and Deonte Thompson, to the potential of Car; Moore and Riley Cooper, to the steady production of Louis Murphy, to talented tight end Aaron Hernandez, this group has it all. If everyone can stay healthy, which isn't a given after already losing star tight end Cornelius Ingram to a knee injury, this will be a devastating corps of playmakers. There are too many weapons to cover.

2.
LSU
3. Tennessee
4. South Carolina
5. Georgia
6. Auburn
7. Ole Miss
8. Alabama
9. Kentucky
10. Arkansas
11. Mississippi State
12. Vanderbilt

Offensive Line
1. LSU
Another year, another great LSU line. With four returning starters and the fifth player, Joseph Barksdale, a good one, the line that allowed a mere 37 sacks in 14 games and was fantastic for the ground game should once again be dominant. The only concern is with the veteran depth, there isn't much, but that's nitpicking. There are more all-stars waiting for their chance to shine.

2.
Tennessee
3. Georgia
4. Arkansas
5. Auburn
6. Alabama
7. Florida
8. Ole Miss
9. South Carolina
10. Mississippi State
11. Kentucky
12. Vanderbilt

Defenses
1. Georgia
Considering last season was supposed to be a problem with no experience and several holes to fill, finishing 14th in the nation in total defense and 18th in scoring D, allowing 323 yards and 20 points per game, showed how quickly the team rebuilds. Now the defense is loaded with former high school all-stars who have grown into great college players. There's depth, options, and the potential for an even better rotation with a loaded defense that'll be dominant at times. The only downside is the lack of a sure-thing pass rushing end, with Marcus Howard gone, but there will be pressure from all four spots up front, led by the tackle pair of Geno Atkins and Jeff Owens, while the linebacking corps will be solid, if not spectacular. The secondary grew into something special by the end of the year, and now it should be terrific led by soon-to-be all-stars CB Asher Allen and FS Reshad Jones.

2. LSU
3. Auburn
4. South Carolina
5. Mississippi State
6. Tennessee
7. Florida
8. Vanderbilt
9. Alabama
10. Kentucky
11. Arkansas
12. Ole Miss

Defensive Lines
1. LSU
Glenn Dorsey might be gone, but if Ricky Jean-Francois is half as good as expected, and Charles Alexander's knee is healthy, the tackles will form a brick wall. Tyson Jackson is in a salary drive at one end, and could make himself into a top ten pick with a double-digit sack season, while Kirston Pittman is a terror on the right side. The second teamers would start at about 100 other places.

2. Georgia
3. Auburn
4. Arkansas
5. Florida
6. Kentucky
7. Ole Miss
8. Mississippi State
9. Alabama
10. Tennessee
11. South Carolina
12. Vanderbilt

Linebackers
1. Georgia
The linebacking corps supposedly needed a year to get ready, and as it turned out, it needed a half a season. Now the corps is ready to be special with a nice starting threesome led by star Dannell Ellerbe to lead a group of young players with fantastic high school résumés. There's speed, athleticism, and big hitting playmakers to burn, and there’s even more deeper in the rotation.      

2. Florida
3. South Carolina
4. Auburn
5. LSU
6. Tennessee
7. Mississippi State
8. Alabama
9. Ole Miss
10. Vanderbilt
11. Kentucky
12. Arkansas

Defensive Backs
1. Vanderbilt
Yup, the secondary really should be that good considering all four starters are pro prospects. CB D.J. Moore should start to get recognition as one of the nation's best all-around corners, while Myron Lewis is a big corner who can handle himself well. The safety tandem of Reshard  Langford and Ryan Hamilton can hit like a ton of bricks and should be even more effective against the pass. The depth is there at all four spots.

2. Georgia
3. Mississippi State
4. South Carolina
5. Auburn
6. Tennessee
7. LSU
8. Florida
9. Alabama
10. Kentucky
11. Arkansas
12. Ole Miss

Special Teams
1. Florida
The Gators could have the best special teams in the SEC if PK Caleb Sturgis is decent. P Chas Henry is great in his role and return man Brandon James is special. If Sturgis can just hit 75% of his field goals, the kicking situation will be the best it's been in the Urban Meyer era.

2.
Georgia
3. Auburn
4. South Carolina
5. Tennessee
6. Alabama
7. Arkansas
8. Ole Miss
9. LSU
10. Kentucky
11. Mississippi State
12. Vanderbilt