Who's Next? The Stars of Tomorrow in the SEC
As we go through spring break, we go through replacing the heroes or the few glances of hope from the season before. Replacing these heroes is difficult most of the time but sometimes a star emerges behind his predecessor.
The SEC produces top of the line talent year in and year out and has proved it by winning the past three national championships, and the only way to do that is to have a back up plan.
These players are the backup plan. They've waited their turn to shine and now is the time.Here we are gonna cover those players who have waited long enough for their turn.
Vanderbilt: Chris Nickson-Larry Smith
Chris Nickson had his moments during his career at Vandy even though he was always looking over his shoulder for Mackenzi Adams.
Adams is still on the team this year but i believe Smith, given his dual threat ability, will be the choice to replace Nickson.
Mississippi State: Old Offense-New Offense
Two words: Dan Mullen. The then QB coach at Florida produced a Heisman winning QB and helped lead Florida with an explosive offense that he hopes to bring to Starkville.
Anthony Dixon could be one of the best running backs in the SEC if he could get some blocking.
Tennessee: Arian Foster-Bryce Brown, David Oku
Foster never really produced steady carries but shined at times when he was needed. Bryce Brown No. 2 RB on ESPN 150 is a dynamic player with one of the quickest changes of direction anyone has seen in a long time.
David Oku is also on the 150 list but i am not sure on his position at this moment. With the departure of running back Leon Creers from Tennessee, Brown should get ample playing time while Oku will probably be given a redshirt.
Georgia: Matthew Stafford, Knoshown Moreno--Joe Cox, Caleb King
Stafford and Moreno are gone but Richt and co. shouldn't have anything to worry about. Cox, a fifth-year senior, has shown some potential in spring and in mop up duty.
Moreno, however, could be a little bit tougher to replace because not many players come through that are as game changing as Moreno was. Caleb King will be the primary running back to replace 24, but he won't do it all alone.
Look for the Bulldogs to play multiple running backs this upcoming season.
Alabama: J.P. Wilson, Rashad Johnson--Greg McElroy, Ali Sharieff
Alabama is losing some of its biggest components that helped lead the Crimson Tide to a 12-2 season. Wilson, a three-year starter at 'Bama, will be the toughest to replace.
Wilson, although he wasn't lightning at the QB position, he was one of the best game managers there was. He was on key on third down situations and owns nearly every passing record in Tuscaloosa.
McElroy, a junior out of Southlake Texas, has played backup to Wilson since arriving on the capstone and is just itching at the chance to shine.
Rashad Johnson, a walk on running back moved to saftey, was one of the best in the game. Johnson was as athletic and smart as they come. Sharieff has shown his talent in mop up duty in the Arkansas, and Auburn games.
Sharieff will also be competing against Mark Barron, and 09' signee Dre' Kirkpatrick. Kirkpatrick, a corner, has been looked at possibly being moved to safety.
Auburn: Tommy Tubberville- Gene Chizik
Tubberville was wrongly "forced out" of the plains. Tubby took Auburn to an Undefeated season in '04 and a 7-3 record against cross state rival Alabama including six-year span. In comes Gene Chizik.
If you haven't heard of him, he was previously the DC at AU until he left for Texas where helped them win the '05 Nat'l championship. From there he was hired to be the Head Coach at Iowa State University where he developed a record that I personally belive speaks for itself "5-19."
LSU: Old QB's-Jordan Jefferson
LSU spend all of last season trying to solidify its QB position. For the most part it was Jarrett Lee, who at one point in the season led the nation in "Pick 6's". At the end of the season LSU started to figure things out with Jefferson.
Jefferson started in the Chick-Fil-A bowl and led the Bayou Bengals to a dominating win over a good Georgia Tech Squad.
Florida: Percy Harvin-any body that runs under a 4:3
Harvin was easily the most explosive athlete this decade. He wore No. 1 because he was simply No. 1. Gainesville is in no shortage of fast runners.
In fact, the could start a totally different track team just from the football team and they would be competing for the national championship.
Ole Miss: Micheal Oher-Bobby Massie
Oher provided steady protection for QB Snead. Massie is stronger at this point of his career than Oher was and he seems the most likely replacement for the backside protector.
Kentucky: Drew Hartline-Randall Cobb
Hartline didn't really shine as a QB but did do well when he played at receiver. Cobb played sparingly but never earned a full time job until Hartline was injured. I'm not real sure how Hartline will be next season so I'm putting my money on Cobb.
South Carolina: Steve Spurrier- whoever wants it
We all are waiting when it comes and because it hasn't happened yet, it probably won't unless something crazy were to happen. Spurrier is well past his prime and Carolina is a sunken ship. Time to give someone else a chance to succeed in Carolina.
Arkansas: Casey Dick-Ryan Mallett
Dick shined in their upset win over LSU and in other games through his career. Mallett showed that he was talented as a freshman at Michigan. With him in Fayettville, a new era begins in Hog country.
Petrino loves a good QB and that is exactly what Mallett is. Look for a pass-first offense from the hogs this season.