Moving on from the ACC, but staying in the south, let’s cover the SEC Conference futures. And let’s not belabor the point: Southeastern Conference (SEC) is the top-heavy conference. But this conference is loaded with football programs, making the annual championship a highlight of the college football season for all CFB fans. Familiar faces at the top, but some value may exist. Let’s get to the odds without further ado and then break it down. The odds below are as of June 5, 2023.
UGA, Bama, and…LSU?
Given their performance last season, Georgia (-125) has a strong chance of leading the SEC, where they showed formidable strength on both sides of the ball. The favorite this year is Georgia at -125. The Bulldogs have been a dominant force in recent years, consistently fielding one of the country’s most robust and talented rosters on their way to back-to-back championships. Their strong recruitment and player development make them a formidable contender and the team to beat as they load and reload, and 2023 is no different. There followed by a team hungry for redemption. However, their head coach, Kirby Smart, has proven adept at preparing his team for the big stage. Key players to watch this season include their returning quarterback, who showed flashes of brilliance last season, and their experienced defensive core.
Alabama (+200), under the guidance of legendary coach Nick Saban, is a perennial powerhouse in college football. Their recruitment class is among the best year in, year out, ensuring a continuous supply of elite talent. In addition, their new quarterback, a high school sensation, is poised to take over the reins this season, and fans eagerly anticipate his performance.
LSU (+500), the third favorite, hopes for a comeback year. Their 2022 season was slightly below their usual high standards, so look for them to make a statement this year. Their defense, led by some highly touted NFL prospects, is expected to be among the best in college football.
Thoughts: LSU is coming in third among the favorites, with odds at +500. Remember LSU showed how it’s possible, not easy but possible, for a team that isn’t Alabama or Georgia to make it in the SEC Championship. Having said that, they did get destroyed in the championship game…but still, -125 is simply too much to take (especially in June).
Looking past the favorites, several teams are primed to disrupt the odds. Leading this pack are Texas A&M at +1200 and Tennessee at +1400. The Aggies and the Volunteers have proven themselves capable of competing with the best and could potentially cause a few upsets this season.
The Dark Horses
The dark horse category features teams like Mississippi at +3300, Auburn and Florida at +7000, and Mississippi State at +7500. These teams have shown potential, and although not immediate favorites, their unique combinations of experienced coaching staff and talented players make them capable of a surprise or two.
The Long Shots
Rounding out the odds are Arkansas and South Carolina, both at +8000, and Vanderbilt, Missouri, and Kentucky, all at +10000. While they might be considered long shots, and you’re insane if you plan on taking them, their odds reflect the potential for growth and surprise performances that could shake up the conference rankings. Moreover, this is likely the final year that any of the teams in this category will have a chance to win the SEC after the league does away with the East and West Divisions.