SEC Power Poll Week 6: Besieged by Derp

Oh, God, make it stop. Make it stop. - Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

Numbers One and Fourteen we know. Two through Thirteen, not so much.

This week's SEC Power Poll has to take into account a lot of devastating injuries, particularly to the Dawgs and Gators, as well as the fact that some teams (cough Arkansas cough) have actually gotten worse as the season progresses.

  1. Alabama: The offense clicked on all cylinders -save a few early miscues in the redzone, and the defense was rugged. The team is finally starting to look Alabama-ish in time for the stretch run, which aside from LSU and Auburn, is lighter than in previous seasons. Thanks, Conference Office!
  2. LSU: The defense was lights out against Florida, even if the offense predictably struggled at times against one of the nation's elite defenses. The most one-sided 11-point win I've seen in a while.
  3. Texas A&M: The run defense was actually much improved in only surrendering 133 yards. JFF had some suspect decision-making and an injury scare, but there are few guys you'd rather have on the field when you need a play. The Aggies will likely do terrible things to a weak Auburn back seven this week.
  4. Mizzou: Completely unfazed on the road as the offense was balanced and the defensive line difference makers. Losing Franklin is huge with the South Carolina and Florida games looming large. If Mauk can grow up fast, and the Tigers hold serve, this team will be in Atlanta.
  5. South Carolina: Went deep into the bench on both sides of the ball, completely shutdown Arkansas' woeful passing game, limited the Hogs' run, ran it up a bit late, and otherwise looked like the completely dominant, Top-10 team the Gamecocks can be. WADR to Alabama, LSU, Missouri, this was the most impressive effort by a conference team this week.
  6. Georgia: If anyone's had a tougher front-loaded schedule, I'd like to see it. That said, the Dawgs are a ghost of what they could be. The secondary may have actually regressed a bit, and the d-line was caught flat-footed way too often...and those have nothing to do with injuries. If this team runs the table -and they can, Mark Richt should vie for COY honors.
  7. Florida: There was a time when Alabama played fantastic defense, fought for every yard on both sides of the ball, and came up way short too often because of an anemic offense and lack of playmakers. We call those the Shula Years. Not saying that Muschamp is Shula 2.0, but this is the mid-point of year three and systemic offensive changes may be forthcoming, beginning with recruiting, development and coaching.
  8. Auburn: There is absolutely nothing to take away from this Spring game, other than much needed reps for backups and the fact no one was injured. Let's put the brakes on beating Aggie in the Hate Barn just yet, guys. The conference schedule -with UGA, TAMU, Alabama, now truly begins.
  9. Ole Miss: Tough injuries in a tough loss to a team the Rebels matchup very well against. Hugh Freeze is a perfect 3-0 in the last three games for critical mismanagement at critical times. Nursing a tie late in the 4th, with the Aggies vulnerable to power run packages, Freeze called three straight passes, ensuring more time for one of the nation's most dynamic offenses. Inexcusable.
  10. Mississippi State: The most one-step-forward-two-steps-back team in the conference; practically slept through its homecoming game with a decent BGSU team and scratched out a one-point uninspired victory. Don't worry, Bulldogs, 2014's head coach was on the field...his name is Dave Clawson.
  11. Tennessee: Certainly the most talented, and probably the better coached, of the conference's bottom tier. The bye week came at a perfect time to salve the pain of a tough UGA loss. Then again, none of that will matter if the Gamecocks do their thing at home. Big chance for the Vols to show how far they've come or how far they need to go.
  12. Vanderbilt: Bad news: fresh off a thumping by Mizzou, the ‘Dores have Georgia in town, then a trip to Texas A&M. Good news: This may be the most vulnerable that UGA has been in a decade.
  13. Arkansas: 30 yards passing, seven first downs, a pick-six surrendered (again), and 52 points allowed with barely any fight gets you way down here. Youth particularly shows in huge, negative moments: this team gets its head town and never lifts it back up.
  14. Kentucky: Surrendered the most yards to an Alabama team in 40 years, and was outgained by almost 500 yards in an ugly loss that could have been worse had Alabama not left 21 points on the field. This team may not win another game against FBS competition.
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