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SEC Power Poll: Week 9

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We here at OverThePylon were asked to be a voting member in the SEC Power Poll this season hosted by Team Speed Kills. It’s a collection of the best and brightest SEC blogs throughout the college football landscape. Each week we’ll be posting our ballot, and an expansion of the little blurbs we have to put forward with our votes.

General Power Poll Philosophy
In general, it wouldn’t really make sense for us not to start off with the teams already ranked on our CBSSports Blogpoll. So that’s the starting point. From there it’s an exercise in resume evaluation, accomplishments, and expectation. Some use their Power Poll as an evaluation of who would win on a neutral field given the teams’ recent performances while their poll ballots are a combination of where the teams started, how they’ve done, all balanced with preseason expectations. Our Power Poll ballot is a nice hybrid of the two, as is our Blogpoll Ballot. Off we go with this week’s ballot…

As much as it pains me to admit it since the result is not favorable or positive for Kentucky, the SEC is beginning to shift itself. Where just a few weeks ago, there were two or three programs up top, two or three programs on the bottom, and a wide swath of teams in the middle, each easy to justify wherever someone ranked them in this Power Poll, now that isn’t so much the case. The room at the top is still a three team race, and one of those two will get bumped out come Saturday and the LSU-Alabama tilt.

Past those three it’s a royal mess, and much like the actual Top 25, it’s much more about any team who has the potential to elevate itself completely squandering the opportunity than any team doing something worth jumping anyone else. South Carolina was on the way up, making more than a few fans believe a major Bowl was possible. Saturday’s loss to Tennessee doesn’t make that impossible, but it certainly raises some questions. In many respects, the same could be said for Ole Miss. What started as a year that many thought would be an at-large BCS berth for the Rebels now finds them clinging to the hope of being Bowl eligible and nowhere near the Top 25. Auburn had a meteoric rise and a subsequent meteoric fall after dropping three straight. Kentucky goes and drops a game to Mississippi State that may prove to be damning to UK’s hopes at a 4th straight Bowl. After years past in the SEC where it was a virtual murderer’s row, this Power Poll and the rankings within it seem to be more about who sucks the least at any given moment… at least outside of Gainesville, Tuscaloosa, and Baton Rouge.

  1. Florida 8-0 (6-0): Dominated Georgia thoroughly and completely. Eye poking at no additional charge.
  2. Alabama 8-0 (5-0): Idle week means the Tide can get rested, but allows Florida to hop over top of them. Gigantic game now against LSU.
  3. LSU 7-1 (4-1): If the Tigers want respect, there’s a great chance to earn it this weekend against Alabama. As it stands now they’re clearly #3.
  4. Auburn 6-3 (3-3): Which Auburn team is reality? The one that smoked out Ole Miss? Or the one that lost 3 straight? Who the hell knows…
  5. Tennessee 4-4 (2-3): It’s almost as if Kiffin and company play really well against teams they shouldn’t beat and really not against teams they should. Looking more and more likely to be Bowling.
  6. South Carolina 6-3 (3-3): Just when I thought SC was actually decent and Spurrier was once again making a push for respectability, the Cocks go and lose at Tennessee. Back to mediocrity for you.
  7. Ole Miss 5-3 (2-3): Arguably the most disappointing team of 2009, though not all their fault. Pundits and pollsters should have known better than to bank on Nutt.
  8. Georgia 4-4 (3-3): Is Florida that good or Georgia that bad? I’m banking on a little bit of both.
  9. Mississippi State 4-5 (2-3): Beat our Cats. As such, they can go ahead and piss off.
  10. Kentucky 4-4 (1-4): Here’s to hoping that the MSU loss was the fluke and not the wins we celebrated. Uphill climb for the Cats for the rest of 09.
  11. Arkansas 4-4 (1-4): Beating Eastern Michigan is really no great accomplishment. Even if you do score 60 and run the score up in true Petrino fashion.
  12. Vanderbilt 2-7 (0-5): At least the Commodores are getting a decent education. That’s really the only highlight.
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