Yes, I still do cast an occasional SEC Power Poll ballot. In fact, I have cast them most weeks.
This week is extra special to me because I am casting a ballot that does not include a negative comment about Kentucky. In fact, I have a positive comment about the Wildcats, not necessarily because they looked good or played good football, but because they went out there under extreme adversity and beat an opponent that they hadn't defeated in 26 straight meetings, an absurd streak that is now mercifully defunct.
Of course, there remains the Florida streak which is now at Tennessean proportions, but we'll deal with that later. Follow me past the jump for the ballot.
|1||LSU||8-0||12-0||10.37||458-127||27.6||1,[1!]||The immovable object won vs. the unstoppable Arkansas offense.|
|2||Alabama||7-1||11-1||7.91||432-106||27.2||2,[2!]||Obliterated their rival in the Iron Bowl. It's on to the BCS Championship game versus LSU, I expect.|
|3||Arkansas||6-2||10-2||6.51||449-273||14.7||6,10,9,8||The Hogs found fools gold jumping out to a 2-touchdown lead. That just pissed LSU off, and it didn't end well for Bobby Petrino's boys.|
|4||Georgia||7-1||10-2||6.47||408-213||16.3||12,14,14||After 2 games, Mark Richt looked like a historical fact. Ten straight wins later, he looks like a football coach.|
|5||South Carolina||6-2||10-2||6.71||361-226||11.3||14,13,12||The Gamecocks demonstrated to Clemson that the SEC is a football conference.|
|6||Auburn||4-4||7-5||10.30||291-352||-5.1||33,26||Auburn trying to stop Trent Richardson looked like a car trying to stop a freight train – and with a similar result.|
|7||Florida||3-5||6-6||8.47||307-247||5.0||Florida has done its best South Carolina imitation this year – started out 4-0 and imploded.|
|8||Mississippi State||2-6||6-6||8.16||306-239||5.6||Their second win in the SEC came easy versus Ole Miss.|
|9||Vanderbilt||2-6||6-6||6.15||323-250||6.1||When was the last time Vanderbilt had one less SEC victory than Florida?|
|10||Kentucky||2-6||5-7||6.32||190-296||-8.8||Snapped a 26-year losing streak against the Vols. That's all you need to know. Everything else is completely superfluous.|
|11||Tennessee||1-7||5-7||10.01||244-271||-2.3||There is a bowl-eligible team in the state of Tennessee, and it isn't this one.|
|12||Mississippi||0-8||2-10||9.24||193-385||-16.0||Houston Nutt's swan song. Hotty Toddy, Houston.|
At this point in the season, it's all pretty easy, but there are a few debatable choices. I think you can make an argument that Georgia belongs in third because they won the conference, even though Arkansas defeated South Carolina, who in turn defeated Georgia.
I think you can make an argument that Vanderbilt is a better team than Mississippi St., and Tennessee a better team than Kentucky. The Tennessee part doesn't wash because, well, we beat them. Vandy/MSU is a coin flip in my book.
The only undebatable questions are at the top and bottom. There is no doubt that LSU is the best team in the SEC. They have proven that. Conversely, there is no doubt that Ole Miss is the worst. There isn't any rational doubt that Alabama belongs second. Other than that, your mileage may vary.