Dye-Gest: SEC Strong In A Variety of Sports

College Football Hall of Fame coach Pat Dye writes about the success of the Southeastern Conference and living in the Auburn area.

Season after season, in almost every sport Southeastern Conference teams compete in, it has been fascinating for me to watch how much success programs across the league are having at the national level. You could almost call this a golden age for SEC sports.

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One of the big reasons for that is the amount of revenue being generated by football, which has enabled teams across the league to increase their budgets for every sports team they sponsor.

If an SEC athletic department really wants to be outstanding at particular sport, if it can hire an outstanding coach to lead the way, provide first class facilities and fund the team properly the odds are the coach is going to develop a winner. Because SEC programs are able to pay top salaries, it is not a surprise there are so many strong coaches in the league in so many sports.

One of the things I really enjoy living in this area is being able to keep up with a variety of Auburn teams and watch the athletes compete and grow. When I decided to retire from coaching one of the best things I did was making the decision to stay in the Auburn area.

I love the community and the energy of the place. Although I actually live out in the country in Macon County, I am not far from Auburn and I am able to regularly get to campus for practices and games.

I like being in town to visit with Auburn folks and eat at all of the different restaurants. There is always something going on so I understand why so many people who are retired, who are close to retiring, have moved to the area or are thinking about how to make that happen.

Being in this area I know that there are lot of outstanding people in a variety of different areas at the university and in the city, which I believe has benefitted from good leadership over the years. That is part of the reason why Auburn is such a vibrant place to live.

I suspect a lot of the college towns around the SEC have the same type of energy and excitement, which is another reason why those universities are so successful at attracting athletes to their campuses.

It’s spring and this time of year SEC baseball and softball are into their league schedules as the teams toughen each other up and get them ready for postseason play. I really enjoy watching both sports and think that Auburn’s programs are in good hands. There are so many strong teams in both softball and baseball it won’t be a surprise if the league produces a national champion in one or both of those sports this year.

The league regularly wins national titles in track and field, swimming and diving, tennis, gymnastics, golf and equestrian, the other SEC sports going on this spring. It won’t be a surprise if there are couple more championships league teams will win before the 2015-16 college sports season comes to a close.

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