2012 BCS AQ Conference Profile: SEC

BCS Know How is taking you through the six automatic-qualifying BCS conferences in preparation for the 2012 season. Our easy-to-digest previews come to an end with as much of a “BCS” conference as there is, the SEC. Scroll down to see our profiles of the other conferences.

Conference: Southeastern Conference (SEC)

Active Since: 1933

Current Member Schools:
East Division: Florida Gators, Georgia Bulldogs, Kentucky Wildcats, South Carolina Gamecocks, Tennessee Volunteers, Vanderbilt Commodores, Missouri Tigers
West Division: Alabama Crimson Tide, Arkansas Razorbacks, Auburn Tigers, Louisiana State (LSU) Tigers, Mississippi State Bulldogs, Mississippi (Ole Miss) Rebels, Texas A&M Aggies (14)

Bowl Affiliations: Sugar Bowl (BCS), Independence Bowl, Music City Bowl, Liberty Bowl, Chick-fil-A Bowl, Outback Bowl, Capital One Bowl, Gator Bowl, Cotton Bowl, BBVA Compass Bowl (10)

2011 Results:
Conference Champion — LSU
Conference Runner-up — Georgia
BCS Bowl Results: 2012 BCS National Championship Game: Alabama 21 vs. LSU 0
Overall Bowl Record: 6-3 (BCSNCG accounted for both a win and a loss)
Heisman Vote Recipients: Alabama RB Trent Richardson (Third Overall); LSU DB Tyrann Mathieu (Fifth Overall)

2012 Outlook: By now, you probably know the story, the debates and the outcome. For the first time in BCS history, 2011 saw a title game between two teams from the same conference. It wasn’t all that surprising that the conference that was first the break through that barrier was the SEC, which has now provided the BCS’s last six champions.

Alabama was victorious in that game, after being bested by LSU earlier in 2011’s regular season. But that now must become a memory, as the conference searches for its next title hopeful. The question is, of course, would their best hope be the Tigers and Crimson Tide again? Or can another squad from the ever-deepening rosters of the SEC send another team to the top?

This certainly isn’t a two-team conference, and with two new teams this year — Big 12 transfers Missouri and Texas A&M — the conference has literally never been deeper. While the two newbies probably don’t have the firepower to hang with the Tigers and Tide, there are plenty of teams that do.

South Carolina, Arkansas and Georgia join Alabama and LSU as consensus top-ten teams across the country, and just like last year, this season could be another one dominated by the SEC, long the pride of the short-for-this-world BCS.

Heisman Hopefuls: South Carolina RB Marcus Lattimore, Georgia QB Aaron Murray, Alabama QB A.J. McCarron, Alabama RB Eddie Lacy, Arkansas QB Tyler Wilson, Arkansas RB Knile Davis, LSU CB Tyrann Mathieu

BCS Know How’s 2012 Predictions:
Conference Champion — LSU Tigers
Conference Runner-up — Georgia Bulldogs
BCS bids: LSU Tigers — BCS National Championship Game; Alabama Crimson Tide — Sugar Bowl
Heisman Finalists — South Carolina RB Marcus Lattimore

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