Best Of The West

Larry Phipps is a South Carolinian who takes his Southeastern Conference football very seriously. So seriously he produces a pre-season preview on CD which he sells on his website. He polls those of us who cover SEC teams on a regular basis to produce his preview.

The Phipps preview has all sorts of facts, but as with many previews it is the opinions that many find interesting. And those opinions are the basis of his polls...picking teams and players for the upcoming season.

Phipps believes that his preview is the only one that names All-Southeastern Conference Western and Eastern Division pre-season all-star teams.

Alabama has relatively good representation, particularly defensively.

The Phipps Pre-Season All-SEC Western Division team has Brodie Croyle as quarterback. The only other first team selection from the Crimson Tide is center J.B. Closner.

First team selections on defense are linebacker DeMeco Ryans and safeties Roman Harper and Charlie Peprah.

Kenneth Darby is second team as the running back on offense. Second team defenders include ends Wallace Gilberry and Mark Anderson and linebacker Freddie Roach.

Alabama had five first team and four second team selections. Auburn had eight first team selections (including both the punter and placekicker) and four second team picks. LSU had seven first team selections and seven second team picks (including both the second team placekicker and second team punter).

Ole Miss had two first team and four second team selections, Arkansas one first team and three second team picks, and Mississippi State one first team and two second team choices.

To order the 8th annual Phipps SEC Football Preview for $5.99 (with a portion of proceeds going to charity) go to

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