clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Visualization of SEC Titles Through Time

How did we get to today?

John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

I've begun playing around with making animated GIFs, and today I decided to do one that's a chart. A basic chart one to make would be to show the number of SEC football titles through time.

So, that's what I've done. The number of titles for each team comes from those reported by the SEC media guide, so any ties reported in there produce more than one championship per year. Teams go and come as they did throughout the years, and no, I didn't forget Sewanee. Sewanee was a founding SEC member in 1932, yes, but 1939 was its last year playing in the conference. The first chart is for 1940, so that's why Sewanee doesn't ever show up.

sec chart

A few observations:

  • For younger fans, Florida is and always has been a power. This is another reminder of how recent its success has been. Up to and including 1990, Florida was alone with Vanderbilt (and Sewanee, I guess) in not having won and kept a conference championship. The Gators did win it in 1984 before NCAA violations took it away. The '84 title remains vacated in the record book. UF would have gotten its first in '90, but lingering probation kept Steve Spurrier's first team from claiming that one.
  • Auburn also takes longer than you might think to get going. The Tigers got a title in 1957, but they wouldn't win another until 1983. Thanks to a shared title in the 1970s, Kentucky actually passes up Auburn for the 1980 chart.
  • Alabama totally dominated the 1970s, winning eight conference championships. Take out that decade, and the Tide is only three ahead of Tennessee, within reasonable striking distance for some of the other programs. Put it back in, and the Tide has over a decade's worth of lead.
  • UK and Mississippi State have two and one SEC championships, respectively, which is more than the five schools without one at all. They still trail Georgia Tech (five) and Tulane (three) though.
  • Tennessee may not have won a conference title since 1998, but it's still in second place overall. As we discussed a week ago, the 85-scholarship era hasn't been kind to the Vols.