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2010 Pre-Preseason Rankings ... SEC
Georgia RB Caleb King
Georgia RB Caleb King
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Feb 11, 2010


The very, very early look at the teams before spring ball kicks in - The SEC


2010 Pre-Preseason Rankings

SEC Teams

CFN 2010 Pre-Preseason Rankings 
No. 1 to 15 | No. 16 to 30 | No. 31 to 45 | No. 46 to 60 
No. 61 to 75 | No. 76 to 90 | No. 91 to 105 | No. 106 to 120

Pre-Preseason Rankings By Conference
ACC | Big East | Big Ten | Big 12 | C-USA | Ind.
MAC | M-West | Pac 10 | SEC | Sun Belt | WAC

- 2009 CFN Final Rankings
- 2009 CFN Pre-Preseason Rankings
- 2008 CFN Pre-Preseason Rankings
- 2007 CFN Pre-Preseason Rankings
- 2010 CFN Recruiting Rankings  

1. Alabama
2009 Final CFN Ranking: 1
Because it’s Alabama and because the coaching is so great and because the talent level is so ridiculously high after a few years of top-shelf recruiting, this might be everyone’s preseason No. 1 team. However, there are concerns for a team that caught a few big breaks in a down year in the SEC (not to mention Colt McCoy’s shoulder injury in the national title game) and needed a few skin-of-the-teeth wins to get through unscathed. The defense has some major work to do with six of the defensive front seven gone including LB Rolando McClain and NG Terrence Cody. Corner and punt return star Javier Arenas and FS Justin Woodall are also gone. But don’t weep any tears for a defense that has plenty of NFL prospects waiting in the wings. Oh yeah … the offense. The backfield is jaw-dropping with a Heisman-winner (Mark Ingram) along a guy (Trent Richardson) who might be a starter in the NFL right now. Throw in top-five pro prospect WR Julio Jones and three starters on the O line, and the offense will be tremendous. The schedule has plenty of landmines with Penn State, at Arkansas, Florida, at South Carolina, Ole Miss, at Tennessee, at Tennessee, and Auburn to deal with.

2. Florida
2009 Final CFN Ranking: 2
If you’re ever going to get to Florida, this is it with the phenomenal recruiting classes waiting in the wings. In a year of transition (or Year One A.T.T. … figure it out), QB John Brantley has to live up to all the prep hype and be the NFL prospect that many consider him to be. However, he can be mediocre and the Gators will still likely win the East with a defense that remains loaded despite the loss of future NFL stars like Brandon Spikes and Joe Haden. The offense will have to use the offensive line to pave the way for more of a running game from the backs. The depth chart is laughably amazing with too much talent for one ball now that super-recruit Mack Brown is in the mix with Jeff Demps, Chris Rainey, and Emmanuel Moody. With Tennessee in even more of an iffy phase and Georgia trying to figure out what it is, this might be a three game season going to Alabama and hosting LSU in back-to-back weeks and dealing with an improved Florida State in the regular-season finale.

10. LSU
2009 Final CFN Ranking: 27
Last year was a strong year even if it wasn’t the special one that LSU has been accustomed to. This season should be when the Tigers get back into the national title hunt with eight starters back on offense and the phenomenal recruiting classes of the last few years about to kick in. The defense suffers a big blow up front with the loss of three good starters, but LSU is a factory for coming up with talented linemen. The linebacking corps has the potential to be special with a little bit of time, while the secondary, led by corner Patrick Peterson, will be a rock. No one’s touching this team until the trip to Florida on October 9th, and the Alabama game is in Baton Rouge.

19. Auburn
2009 Final CFN Ranking: 33
If last year was a positive step forward, this year could be a major leap if Neil Caudle can produce at quarterback. The tremendous recruiting class should help the overall depth, but there are enough good players in place to expect more consistency with RB Onterio McCalebb leading the dangerous attack that gets back all the top receiving weapons and four starters up front. The defense welcomes back eight starters and should be a brick wall against the run. Yes, the Tigers have to go to Alabama, but they get two weeks off before the showdown and the three other road games (yes, only three) are at Mississippi State, Ole Miss, and Kentucky. Merry Christmas.

20. Georgia
2009 Final CFN Ranking: 30
Last year wasn’t that bad by normal standards, but it’s not what Georgia was hoping for. There are still big questions about an underachieving group of running backs, a quarterback situation that needs Logan Gray or Aaron Murray to be great, not just good, and a defense that was stunningly soft and didn’t make nearly enough big plays. There’s speed and athleticism across the board, and WR A.J. Green, C Ben Jones, and DE Justin Houston bring some playmakers to build around, but there’s still a lot of work to be done. The schedule isn’t all that bad with the toughest road game at Auburn and the second toughest at South Carolina.

24. Arkansas
2009 Final CFN Ranking: 28
Last year was the stepping-stone to this year after Ryan Mallett chose to come back for another year. The junior bomber leads a devastating offense that returns ten starters and should be among the most dangerous in America. The defense has nowhere to go but up and should be more consistent with seven starters coming back. However, losing Malcolm Sheppard and Adrian Davis off the line hurts, and MLB Wendel Davis won’t be easily replaced. The Hogs aren’t going to win the West, but they’ll be in the thick of things getting Alabama, LSU and Ole Miss at home and catching a break getting Vanderbilt and South Carolina from the East.

28. Ole Miss
2009 Final CFN Ranking: 25
Last year was supposed to be when everything came together with the veteran, explosive team and the schedule breaks for a special year. It didn’t happen, and now the piper will be paid. Only three starters return on offense with the loss of QB Jevan Snead, RB Dexter McCluster, and WR Shay Hodge hurting the firepower. The defense doesn’t take as big a hit, but it’s all but starting over in the secondary and needing to build a bit of depth on the front seven. The real problem is the schedule after the squishy-soft first five games. Five of the last seven games are at Alabama, at Arkansas, Auburn, at Tennessee, and at LSU.

34. Tennessee
2009 Final CFN Ranking: 39
Derek Dooley has work to do. This was going to be a bit of a rocky season anyway with more work to be done to beef up the depth and come up with the playmakers to compete for the East title, but this is still a good enough team to push for a New Year’s Day bowl. The offensive line needs help, Nick Stephens has to prove he can step in at quarterback for Jonathan Crompton, and Bryce Brown has to live up to his prep hype to carry the ground game. The defense gets back seven starters but loses SS Eric Berry and LB Rico McCoy. The schedule is a bear, but most of the big games are at home getting Oregon, Florida, Alabama, and Ole Miss in Knoxville. However, the Vols have to go to LSU and Georgia in back to back weeks. How’s this for a six game stretch? Oregon, Florida, UAB (exhale), at LSU, at Georgia. Alabama. Welcome to the gig, Derek.

41. South Carolina
2009 Final CFN Ranking: 52
The expectations aren’t going to be that high for the perennial underachiever, but this should be a dangerous team that just got a whole bunch better with the addition of Marcus Lattimore, one of the nation’s top running back prospects. QB Stephen Garcia leads an offense that returns nine starters, while the defense gets back eight starters and should be better despite losing LB Eric Norwood. The schedule doesn’t get many breaks facing Alabama and going to Auburn in two of the games against the West, while the Florida and Clemson games are on the road. Georgia and Tennessee have to come to Columbia.

48. Kentucky
2009 Final CFN Ranking: 55
Joker Phillips has some holes to fill, but he has a nice base to work with. It was trial by fire last year at quarterback, and it should pay off with Morgan Newton leading a veteran group of options. Randall Cobb is one of the SEC’s best all-around playmakers, and Derrick Locke is the best running back no one knows about. The offense will put up points if the line can replace three starters, while the defense should be fine even without CB Trevard Lindley and LB Micah Johnson. If Florida, Ole Miss, and Tennessee are probable losses, it’s not a big deal that they’re on the road while the rest of the slate isn’t too bad missing Alabama and LSU from the West and getting a beautiful late season stretch facing at Mississippi State, Charleston Southern and Vanderbilt from October 30 until the November 27 date at Tennessee.

55. Mississippi State
2009 Final CFN Ranking: 62
Does Dan Mullen’s team have enough to get over the hump and into a bowl? Maybe, but it’s going to be a rough ride over the first half of the season with Auburn, at LSU, Georgia, at Houston and at Florida as part of the mix before mid-October. But there’s a payoff late, right? Try again with trips to Alabama and Ole Miss wrapped around a date with Arkansas in November. On the plus side, the offense, even with a wholesale change at running back losing Anthony Dixon, Christian Ducre, and Arnil Stallworth, should’ve be awful, while the defense gets back seven starters. This year will be about survival to 2011, and anything more than five wins will be gravy.

88. Vanderbilt
2009 Final CFN Ranking: 106
Will the Commodores finally be able to put up points on the board? The offense only gets back six starters and doesn’t have a bunch of firepower, but it welcomes back exciting RB Warren Norman. The defense is a bigger issue with just four starters returning. With the SEC looking to be far better than it was last year, this should be a rough year to get through the conference slate with any more than an upset win, while the only sure-thing non-conference win will be at Eastern Michigan.

No. 1 to 15 | No. 16 to 30 | No. 31 to 45 | No. 46 to 60 
No. 61 to 75 | No. 76 to 90 | No. 91 to 105 | No. 106 to 120

Pre-Preseason Rankings By Conference
ACC | Big East | Big Ten | Big 12 | C-USA | Ind.
MAC | M-West | Pac 10 | SEC | Sun Belt | WAC