Dye-Gest Column: SEC's Glory Days

SEC teams are having success in a variety of sports, a trend that is likely to continue.

With half of the baseball teams in the College World Series coming from the Southeastern Conference that is another reminder that this league has really stepped up and is in a golden era as a national power.

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It won’t be a bit of a surprise if one of the SEC teams comes home from Omaha with a national championship trophy like Florida did from the softball College World Series in Oklahoma City where five of the final eight teams came from the SEC with Auburn reaching the tournament’s final four.

The league just missed putting five baseball teams into the world series bracket for Omaha with Texas A&M losing in extra innings to TCU for the final spot in the eight-team field.

If the games in Omaha are as exciting as the ones were for the softball world series in Oklahoma City they will be worth watching, even for fans who don’t have a rooting interest in the teams involved.

From what I have been told Oklahoma City did a great job as host for its College World Series and Omaha has developed a reputation for doing the same thing. Both of those cities are probably glad they made long-term commitments to do these events in a first class manner because they are reaping the rewards from all of the money they bring into their local economies from fans who come in from across the country to enjoy the games.

From what I am seeing the SEC is reaping the rewards from investing in great coaches and great facilities. Combine that with the tradition of success in numerous programs around the league and the increased exposure the SEC is getting with its own television network, along with expanded coverage on other networks, and there is no reason to expect the league to lose its spot as the top conference in the nation.

The SEC is nationally known for its football programs, but has strong teams in every sport it sponsors. Another example of that is golf with LSU bringing home the national championship trophy earlier this month with Auburn and other teams from the league having strong showings at the national level.

The upside for this league is off the charts with the record-setting revenue being generated and the attention teams across the league are receiving in the different sports.

As an ex-coach in the SEC it is a lot of fun to watch it grow and prosper. It makes you think you may have done something right a long time to help lay the groundwork and the foundation of what they are still continuing to build on today. However, it is so much bigger and better in every respect today than it was when I was playing and coaching football.

The support for the athletes is at an all-time high and the ones who take advantage of it have a wonderful opportunity to play their sport at a high level with all the help they need to reach their potential on the field of competition and in the classroom.

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