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Auburn picked to win SEC title at Media Days
July 16, 2015

SECchampionAuburn
Auburn celebrated winning the SEC championship in 2013

By Charles Goldberg
AuburnTigers.com

AUBURN, Ala. -- Coach Gus Malzahn's optimistic outlook for his football team apparently hit home at SEC Media Days this week.

The media predicted Auburn will win the Southeastern Conference championship in a bounce-back season, the league announced Thursday. The voting had a strange twist, however. Alabama was picked to win the SEC West and Georgia was picked to win the East.

But Auburn was picked to win the championship, with 96 points in the voting to second-place Alabama's 80. It's the first time a team in the media poll's 23-year history that wasn't picked to win a division was chosen to win the championship.

The media has correctly predicted the SEC champion five times since 1992. Auburn last won the title in 2013.

Malzahn reminded the media in his appearance Monday the Tigers have to replace much of their offense from last year. But he said he liked his offensive line, liked his three prime running back candidates, trusted new starting quarterback Jeremy Johnson to get the job done and liked Will Muschamp at defensive coordinator.

He didn't stop there.

"The fortunate thing is we do have some experienced guys that have won an SEC Championship, knows what it takes, feels like, almost won the whole thing, and then last year went through the other end of it, not reaching your goal," Malzahn said. "So we've got some guys that have experience. We have some young guys that are extremely talented. So we are going to be relying on those old guys to bring those young guys along. That's going to be a big key to our season, especially getting off to a good start.

"With the inexperience we have, and if you look at our schedule, especially starting out the season, we're going to have to play well, and we're probably going to have to win some close games to have that chance of winning the championship in our league."

The preseason All-SEC team will be announced Friday.

Auburn players have been filling up the watch lists for national awards, including Johnson, who appeared on the Davey O'Brien Award watch list Thursday. The complete list of Auburn nominees is here.

SEC Media Days' predictions, with vote totals:

SEC CHAMPION

 

School

Points

Auburn

96

Alabama

80

Georgia

28

LSU

9

Ole Miss

3

Arkansas

3

Texas A&M

2

Tennessee

2

Mississippi State

1

Florida

1

  

WESTERN DIVISION (1st Place votes in parenthesis)

 

School

Points

Alabama (92)

1405

Auburn (108)

1362

LSU (10)

870

Arkansas (6)

821

Ole Miss (3)

732

Texas A&M (4)

628

Mississippi State (2)

482

 

EASTERN DIVISION (1st Place votes in parenthesis)

 

School

Points

Georgia (166)

1498

Tennessee (36)

1231

Missouri (20)

1196

South Carolina (1)

830

Florida (1)

768

Kentucky (1)

534

Vanderbilt

243

 
Charles Goldberg is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter:


 

 

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