This is your marquee matchup according to the coaches: Arkansas offense versus LSU defense.
Earlier today, the SEC released the coaches' preseason All-SEC teams ahead of SEC Media Days next week. That means its time for the customary breakdown of honored players by school. The point system below gives three points for first team selections, two for second team selections, and one for third team selections. Eleven of the 14 schools had at least one first team selection, with only Missouri, Ole Miss, and Vandy missing out. Florida doesn't have one listed below, but K Caleb Sturgis did make the first team as a specialist.
First up, offense:
Arkansas leads the way on offense thanks to first team selections Tyler Wilson, Knile Davis, and Cobi Hamilton. The Hogs' offense is one of only two units to have at least that many first team players. Alabama is a strong second thanks in large part to its offensive line, as D.J. Fluker and Barrett Jones are the Tide's two players on the first team and Chance Warmack is one of the second team selections. Texas A&M is the other school with multiple first team participants, those being WR Ryan Swope and OT Luke Joeckel.
The coaches are down on the post-Urban Meyer offense at Florida, with only OT Xavier Nixon appearing as a third team pick. It's entirely warranted by the offense's play over the last two seasons, but it's still jarring to see the Gators down that low. Also, Missouri is entering the league with a reputation for offense, but it only landed WR T.J. Moe and OT Elvis Fisher on the third team. It seems really odd to have those programs tied points-wise with Mississippi State and Vanderbilt.
Onto the defense:
LSU headlines the defenses in the conference with four first teamers in Sam Montgomery, Barkevious Mingo, Tyrann Mathieu, and Eric Reid. That makes up the most first team selections of any individual unit. Alabama and Georgia come in tied for second, and they are the other two schools with multiple first team honors. Alabama's picks were linebackers C.J. Mosley and Nico Johnson, while Georgia's were Jarvis Jones and Bacarri Rambo. South Carolina is the only other team with double digits in points; it put Jadeveon Clowney on the first team with Devin Taylor, DeVonte Holloman, and D.J. Swearinger making up the second team contingent.
At the bottom of the list, the usual suspects appear. Ole Miss is talent-depleted right now, though defense is where the team's sole selection is. Vandy and Kentucky have trouble putting many players onto these lists in most years anyway. Arkansas also only got one single player on any of the defensive teams, which when paired up with the impressive haul on offense just about sums up Arkansas football from the past few seasons.