Georgia tight end Brock Bowers responds to questions during NCAA college football Southeastern Conference Media Days, Tuesday, July 18, 2023, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/George Walker IV)

SEC Reveals Preseason Media Poll and All-SEC Teams

It’s currently the time of year known as talking season in the Southeastern Conference. As the regular season approaches, some of the most elite programs in the country represent the SEC. Numerous storylines begin to get created following the conclusion of SEC Media Days. One of these storylines will include the announcement of the preseason SEC media poll. As the month of August approaches, the Georgia Bulldogs find themselves in a familiar position. After winning back-to-back National Championships, Georgia received an impressive 181 votes from the media to win the SEC championship in 2023.

With all eyes currently on Georgia, the Alabama Crimson Tide are almost flying under the radar. This is something that Nick Saban and his team have not been used to many times before. Even with the chip that’s on their shoulders, the Tide were still picked to win the SEC West division. Simply winning the division is far from the only goal that Alabama will have this year. However, if they can end up taking care of business in the regular season, it is certainly likely they will see the Bulldogs face-to-face in Atlanta at the SEC Championship game.

SEC East Preview

After the media predicted the final SEC East standings for this season, the hype train continued for Georgia. Carson Beck is set to replace Stetson Bennett at quarterback. This should be a somewhat easy transition for Beck considering he has the best tight end in the nation in Brock Bowers. It can be seemingly unpredictable what can happen on a football field during a Saturday afternoon in the fall. Unexplainable upsets happen all the time in college football. While Georgia will have a target on their back all year long, multiple teams will look to take down the top ranked ‘dawgs.

Taking down the ‘dawgs will be a daunting task in 2023. As they will look to continue to have an elite defense while having five star recruits up and down the roster. Coach Kirby Smart will show no signs of slowing down as the next wave of reinforcements are set to fill any gaps that may have been left by last year’s championship team. Perhaps Georgia’s biggest threat in the division will be Tennessee.

As seen above, the Vols are predicted to finish No. 2 in the SEC East. Tennessee is fresh off one of their best seasons in recent program history. The next step for the Volunteers will be to close the gap to UGA in the division. The team’s high-powered offense will be led by quarterback Joe Milton. Defense will continue to be a priority this year after the team gave up only 22.8 points per game last fall.

Predictions for the SEC West

The West division will be highlighted yet again by the University of Alabama. Although ‘Bama was picked by the media to win the division, it won’t be an easy path. Nick Saban’s team arguably has more question marks this year than ever before. However, the arrival of transfer quarterback, Tyler Buchner will contribute to a quarterback competition between he and Jalen Milroe. One can count on this offense relying heavily on their run game this season. Newly hired Offensive coordinator, Tommy Rees, will need time to get the flow of his offense down as well as a new quarterback. The defense will have a new play caller as well this fall. Defensive play-caller Kevin Steele is also a new hire and will be tasked with coaching a defense that lost possibly the best defensive player in the country in Will Anderson to the NFL.

There’s simply not much separation between LSU and Alabama in the media’s eyes. While Alabama tallied 165 votes to win the SEC West, LSU wasn’t far behind with 117. The Tigers of LSU will have the daunting task of traveling to Tuscaloosa to take on the Crimson Tide this season. After winning the head-to-head matchup last year, Alabama will be looking for revenge. Head Coach Brian Kelly and quarterback Jayden Daniels will enter year two in the program together. After being crowned SEC West champions in 2022, LSU will have even higher hopes and aspirations for 2023.

All Team Selections

It should be no shock to anyone that Georgia and Alabama lead the way with the most total All-SEC selections. This time of year calls for the media to pick who they feel are the best players in the conference for this upcoming season. A total of three All-SEC teams were announced on Friday. Members that attended SEC Media Days last week in Nashville, Tennessee were responsible for putting together these teams.

The back-to-back defending national champions had 10 players represented by making the first team. The first team is highlighted by star tight end Brock Bowers who claimed the tight end position. An impressive total of four offensive lineman and three defensive backs also earned All-SEC honors. Moving over to the West, the entire defensive line earned a spot on the All-SEC team. Highlighting the group is returning starter Dallas Turner who will look to play a huge role in 2023. Meanwhile, LSU’s Daniels enters his senior season in Baton Rouge. Daniels will look to lead his team to new heights this season after being named All-SEC.

There is no lack of talent in the Southeastern Conference. As it is highly regarded as the most talented and physical place to play college football. As the season approaches, new storylines will continue to unfold. Fanbases will puff their chests out until the day the ball is kicked off. Until then, this is simply known as talking season.

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