SEC football notes

Seven SEC teams play in opening weekend games that will be televised either nationally or regionally ... <br><br>Five SEC teams are ranked in a survey of 12 preseason grid polls ... <br><br>The SEC begins its 70th season of football action in 2002 ...


  • Two new coaches enter the SEC scene - Ron Zook at Florida and Bobby Johnson at Vanderbilt ...
  • The SEC has posted winning non-conference records in 22 straight seasons ...
  • 1976 and 1979 were the only losing non-conference seasons in SEC history ...
  • Florida has won an SEC-best 12 straight season opening games ...
  • The SEC Education Initiative, scheduled for launch in September, will place educational software in every elementary school and public library across the nine-state SEC region, representing nearly 15,000 different outlets.

August 31 Schedule

MIDDLE TENNESSEE (8-3) at ALABAMA (7-5) 11:30 a.m. (C) Birmingham, Ala. * JP Sports * Legion Field (83,091) Series: First meeting

MISSISSIPPI STATE (3-8) at OREGON (11-1) 3 p.m. (P) Eugene, Ore. * FOX Sports Net * Autzen Stadium (53,800) Series: First meeting

TENNESSEE (11-2) vs. WYOMING (2-9) 4:30 p.m. (C) Nashville, Tenn. * ESPN2 * Adelphia Coliseum (67,000) Series: UT leads, 1-0 * Last: UT, 42-17 (9/4/99 at Knoxville)

UAB (6-5) at FLORIDA (10-2) 6 p.m. (E) Gainesville, Fla. * Ben Hill Griffin Stadium at Florida Field (83,000) Series: First meeting

LOUISIANA-MONROE (2-9) at OLE MISS (7-4) 6 p.m. (C) Oxford, Miss. * Vaught-Hemingway Stadium (60,580) Series: First meeting

VANDERBILT (2-9) at GEORGIA TECH (8-5) 6 p.m. (E) Atlanta, Ga. * Grant Field (55,000) Series: GT leads, 16-15-3 * Last: GT, 17-10 (9/23/67 at Atlanta)

NEW MEXICO STATE (5-7) at SOUTH CAROLINA (9-3) 7 p.m. (E) Columbia, S.C. * Williams-Brice Stadium (80,250) Series: USC leads, 1-0 * Last: USC, 31-0 (9/2/2000 at Columbia)

CLEMSON (7-5) at GEORGIA (8-4) 7:45 p.m. (E) Athens, Ga. * ESPN * Sanford Stadium (86,520) Series: UGA leads, 39-17-4 * Last: UGA, 19-17 (10/7/95 at Clemson)

September 1, Schedule

LSU (10-3) at VIRGINIA TECH (8-4) 2:30 p.m. (E) Blacksburg, Va. * ABC Sports * Lane Stadium/Worsham Field (51,220) Series: First meeting

KENTUCKY (2-9) at LOUISVILLE (10-2) 6 p.m. (E) Louisville, Ky. * ESPN2 * Papa John's Cardinal Stadium (42,000) Series: UK leads, 9-5 * Last: UL, 36-10 (9/1/2001 at Lexington)

September 2, Schedule

AUBURN (7-5) at SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA (6-6) 5 p.m. (P) Los Angeles, Cal. * ABC Sports * Los Angeles Coliseum (92,000) Series: AU leads, 1-0 * Last: AU, 16-7 (1/1/87 at Orlando, Fla. - Citrus Bowl)

OPEN: Arkansas

SEC Good Works Team, Player of the Week


Alabama senior defensive tackle Kenny King will be featured this week as the SEC Good Works Team Player of the Week on this weekend's Jefferson-Pilot Sports telecast of the Alabama-Middle Tennessee contest. The Daphne, Ala. native, is a two-time Academic All-SEC Honor Roll selection and was honored last year as a third-team Arthur Ashe, Jr., Sports Scholar and a CoSIDA Academic All-District selection.

Kenny was recently inducted into the Alabama chapter of the Omicron Delta Dappa (ODK) for his outstanding leadership, service and academic achievement. He was also honored with an Excellence in Scholarship in Marketing Award and Black Scholars recognition at Alabama.

His community outreach has stretched from his hometown of Daphne to Tuscaloosa, where he has contributed his time and energy for youngsters. The SEC sponsors Good Works Teams for football, men's and women's basketball and men's and women's Olympic Sports. JP Sports highlights one member of the football SEC Good Works Team during each of its weekly football telecasts.

Award ‘Watch' lists

LOMBARDI AWARD (Nation's Top Lineman/Linebacker)

Shawn Andrews, OT, Arkansas
Boss Bailey, LB, Georgia
Kevin Breedlove, OG, Georgia
Ben Claxton, C, Ole Miss
Mario Haggan, LB, Mississippi State
Chase Harp, TE, Kentucky
Bradie James, LB, LSU
Jarret Johnson, DL, Alabama
Chad Lavalais, DT, LSU
Kindal Moorehead, DL, Alabama
Michael Munoz, OT, Tennessee
Will Ofenheusle, OT, Tennessee
Dewayne Robertson, DT, Kentucky
Ian Scott, DL, Florida
Justin Smiley, OL, Alabama
Shannon Snell, OL, Florida
Jon Stinchcomb, OG, Georgia
Dontarrious Thomas, LB, Auburn
Jason Witten, TE, Tennessee
Doug Zeigler, TE, Ole Miss

OUTLAND TROPHY (Nation's Top Lineman)

Shawn Andrews, OT, Arkansas
Jarret Johnson, DT, Alabama
Kenny King, DT, Alabama
Kindal Moorehead, DT, Alabama
Ian Scott, DT, Florida
Jon Stinchcomb, OL, Georgia

BRONKO NAGURSKI AWARD (Nation's Top Defensive Player)

Rashad Faison, DB, South Carolina
Mario Haggan, LB, Mississippi State
Ken Hamlin, DB, Arkansas
Bradie James, LB, LSU
Todd Johnson, DB, Florida
Kindal Moorehead, DT, Alabama
Ian Scott, DT, Florida

DOAK WALKER AWARD (Nation's Top Running Back)

Ahmad Galloway, Alabama
Earnest Graham, Florida
Artose Pinner, Kentucky
Andrew Pinnock, South Carolina
Musa Smith, Georgia
Fred Talley, Arkansas
LaBrandon Toefield, LSU
Carnell Williams, Auburn

Two coaches make SEC coaching debuts

Florida coach Ron Zook and Vanderbilt coach Bobby Johnson will be making their SEC coaching debuts this week.

Florida hosts UAB on Aug. 31. Zook has never been a college head coach, but has been an assistant with the New Orleans Saints and Kansas City Chiefs of the NFL, Florida, Ohio State, Virginia Tech, Tennessee, Kansas Cincinnati and Murray State.

Vanderbilt visits Georgia Tech on Aug. 31. Johnson comes to Nashville after serving as head coach at Furman for the past eight seasons, earning a 60-36 mark (62.5 percent).

SEC leads all conferences in ranked teams for past five seasons

In the last five seasons, the Southeastern Conference has had more teams ranked in the final Associated Press poll than any other conference in the country. In fact, 10 of the SEC's 12 teams have finished the season ranked in the AP Top 25 during the last five seasons. Only the Big Ten has had as many different teams (10) ranked during the last five seasons.

SEC leads all conferences in post-season bowl participation

During the last five seasons, the Southeastern Conference has sent 39 teams to post-season bowl games, the most of any conference in the nation. Since 1997, the SEC is 22-17 in bowl games. Eleven of the SEC's 12 teams have been to post-season bowls in the last five seasons.

SEC, the most competitive conference in the nation

SEC vs. SEC games are the most competitive in the nation. Last season, 49 SEC vs. SEC games had an average scoring margin of 14.51 points per contest. 34.7 percent of the SEC's 49 games (17-of-49) have been decided by five-points-or-less and almost half (24-of-49) have been decided by 10 points or less. Only 15 SEC games were decided by more than 16 points. The Sun Belt Conference had the best percentage of close games at 38.1 percent by five points or less (8-of-21).

2002 Schedules see many bowl teams

In 2002, Southeastern Conference teams will face an average of six bowl teams on its 12-game schedule. Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Ole Miss, Miss. State and Vanderbilt play the most at seven while Arkansas has just five bowl teams on its schedule.

SEC teams will play eight of last season's final Top 20 AP Non-SEC teams. Non-conference foes on this year's schedule that went to bowl's last year include Oklahoma (Cotton Bowl) vs. Alabama, Southern California (Las Vegas Bowl) vs. Auburn, Syracuse ( Bowl) vs. Auburn, Miami (Fla.) (Rose Bowl) vs. Florida and Tennessee, Florida State (Gator Bowl) vs. Florida, Clemson (Humanitarian Bowl) vs. Georgia and South Carolina, Georgia Tech (Seattle Bowl) vs. Georgia and Vanderbilt, Louisville (Liberty Bowl) vs. Kentucky, Virginia Tech (Gator Bowl) vs. LSU, Texas Tech (Alamo Bowl) vs. Ole Miss and Oregon (Fiesta Bowl) vs. Miss. State.

Below is a list of last season's bowl teams that each SEC team will suit up against in 2002:

Alabama (7) - Oklahoma, Arkansas, North Texas, Georgia, Tennessee, LSU, Auburn
Arkansas (5) - Alabama, Tennessee, Auburn, South Carolina, LSU
Auburn (7) - Southern California, Syracuse, Arkansas, Florida, LSU, Georgia, Alabama
Florida (7) - Miami (Fla.), Tennessee, LSU, Auburn, Georgia, South Carolina, Florida State
Georgia (7) - Clemson, South Carolina, Alabama, Tennessee, Florida, Auburn,Georgia Tech
Kentucky (7) - Louisville, Florida, South Carolina, Arkansas, Georgia, LSU, Tennessee
LSU (6) - Virginia Tech, Florida, South Carolina, Auburn, Alabama, Arkansas
Ole Miss (7) - Texas Tech, Florida, Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Georgia, LSU
Miss. State (7) - Oregon, Auburn, LSU, South Carolina, Alabama, Tennessee, Arkansas
South Carolina (6) - Georgia, LSU, Tennessee, Arkansas, Florida, Clemson
Tennessee (6) - Florida, Arkansas, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Miami (Fla.)
Vanderbilt (7) - Georgia Tech, Auburn, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Tennessee

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