With the 2009 college football season approaching, I would like to take a look at the upcoming teams and players gearing up for another outstanding year in the celebrated SEC.
I will give you a list of the best offensive and defensive players as well as the top players flying under the radar. A difficult task yes, but these are the players to watch out for this year.
10 Best Offensive Players
10. WR Dexter McCluster (Ole Miss)
The do-everything offensive weapon will also see time at tailback showing off his explosion and elusiveness.
9. WR Brandon Lafell (LSU)
The rangy wide-out has both speed and sticky hands.
8. OL Ciron Black (LSU)
This massive offensive lineman is almost impossible to get around and has 40 consecutive starts.
7. RB Michael Smith (Arkansas)
Smith is ultra shifty and quick and looks to continue the tradition of the Arkansas running back.
6. TE D.J. Williams (Arkansas)
Dangerous play-maker at the tight end position for Petrino's offense.
5. RB Charles Scott (LSU)
The bruising Scott will punish defenses and control the ground for the Tigers.
4. WR A.J. Green (Georgia)
Green is big, fast, and talented and must lead the Bulldog offense this year.
3. WR Julio Jones (Alabama)
See A.J. Green with a little more help.
2. QB Jevan Snead (Ole Miss)
Prototypical passer has his sights set on an SEC West championship, then the NFL.
1. QB Tim Tebow (Florida)
Attempting to decide the number one offensive player was like trying to decide the best conference in the land...you got it.
10 Best Defensive Players
10. CB Joe Haden (Florida)
Could have easily selected Haden's backfield mate Black but Haden will be the shut down corner on the Gator defense.
9. LB Rennie Curran (Georgia)
Curran tackles everything on the field with this high motor and speed.
8. DE Antonio Coleman (Auburn)
Scary speed for a man his size, Coleman is a menace in opposing backfields.
7. DE Carlos Dunlap (Florida)
The Defensive MVP of last year's title game possesses size and strength along with alarming quickness.
6. CB Trevard Lindley (Kentucky)
The best cover corner in the SEC has one more year to play on Saturday's.
5. DE Greg Hardy (Ole Miss)
As good an end as there is in college football when he is healthy.
4. LB Rolando McClain (Alabama)
Just a beast of a linebacker with range and smarts.
3. DT Terrence Cody (Alabama)
A mammoth defensive tackle can stop a running attack all by himself.
2. LB Brandon Spikes (Florida)
Probably the best linebacker in the country, Spikes has everything you look for.
1. S Eric Berry (Tennessee)
Second to none with both his hitting and ball instincts from the defensive back position.
10 Most Underrated Players
10. LB Chris Marve (Vanderbilt)
Just a sophomore and just getting going, Marve shows great potential.
9. DE Rahim Alem (LSU)
In and out of the starting line-up over the years, Alem is ready to display his supreme rushing ability on the end.
8. DE Chris Walker (Tennessee)
Walker will prove to be an outstanding rush lineman with his quickness and hands. Also could have picked fellow D Lineman Dan Williams here.
7. LB Dont'a Hightower (Alabama)
Overshadowed by his teammate McClain, Hightower can rush the passer and play against the run both extremely well.
6. CB Myron Lewis (Vanderbilt)
Lanky cornerback played in the shadows of D.J. Moore but is now poised to show off his exceptional cover skills
5. WR Randall Cobb (Kentucky)
Cobb can and will throw, run and pass for the Wildcats as he is invaluable to his team.
4. WR Shay Hodge (Ole Miss)
Dependable receiver for the Rebels gets overshadowed by other flashy ball catchers in the league but he is the active career leader in receptions, yards, and touchdowns.
3. DT Malcolm Sheppard (Arkansas)
Versatile performer has a great work ethic who had 6.5 sacks last year.
2. WR Gerald Jones (Tennessee)
Has not had the production yet because of lack of a good quarterback, but Jones is super elusive in the open field and catches the ball better than most.
1. LB Eric Norwood (South Carolina)
Overlooked with the vast talent of linebackers in the league, Norwood might just end up being the best of them. Fierce, fast and formidable.