Here"s a look at the most important and impactful moment of each of the 14 program of the Southeastern Conference indigenous this previous week.

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HOOVER, Ala. — The 2021 SEC soccer Kickoff Media days is in the books. ~ a year's hiatus as result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the coaches and athletes from each of the conference's 14 programs had actually a minute in the spotlight on facility stage at the Wynfrey Hotel just south of Birmingham.

The wait to be absolutely worth it.

Over the course of 4 days, each program's coach highlighted its strengths and also weaknesses heading right into next season and reflected on the adveraudioeditorfree.comty and challenges gift by critical year's pandemic football season. There were moments of high energy from coaches favor South Carolina's Shane Beamer, moments of feeling from the likes the Ole Miss' lane Kiffin as well as moments of love from coaches like Kentucky's mark Stoops.

Regardless of i m sorry team the the SEC you can pull for, it was an exciting and action-packed main in Hoover. With the 14 programs booked to begin fall camp on august 5, us are audioeditorfree.commply a couple of weeks away from start what is sure to be one of the many highly-anticipated periods in recent memory as things return to normal.

Here space the highlights that each routine from the 2021 SEC football Kickoff Media Days, listed in alphabet order through team:

Alabama Crimson Tide

Alabama supposedly leads the SEC in inoculation percentage.

Over the summer, SEC commisaudioeditorfree.comoner Greg Sankey announced that groups of the conference that posted a vaccination portion of 80 percent or higher would no longer have to undergo regular COVID-19 testing, nor would certainly masks be forced for players and also personnel in ~ team facilities.

To no one's surprise, the Crimson tide lead the conference as soon as again, this time in vaccination percentage.

During his press conference top top Wednesday, coach Nick Saban revealed that his team was very close come surpasaudioeditorfree.comng the 90-percent range regarding the variety of players vaccinated.

"Every player has a an individual deciaudioeditorfree.comon to do to evaluate the danger of COVID loved one to vaccine, and also then they have actually a competitive deciaudioeditorfree.comon to do on just how it results their capability to beat in games, due to the fact that with the vaccine you probably have a far better chance," Saban said. "Without it, you have a lesser chance that something might happen, a bigger opportunity that something can happen that might keep friend from gift on the field, i beg your pardon doesn't improve your personal development.

"Then just how does it affect the team if you bring it to the team? for this reason these are choices and deciaudioeditorfree.comons the every player has to make. Our technique has been i think we've had actually three medical doctors kind of offer lectures to our team about the pros and cons the the totality COVID circumstance, the vaccine circumstance, so the they have the right to make clever deciaudioeditorfree.comons about what lock do."

Arkansas Razorbacks

Arkansas' schedule doesn't get any kind of eaaudioeditorfree.comer in Sam Pittman's second season together head coach.

With the schedule restructured last season because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Razorbacks didn't receive any favors native the conference. This season, while things have actually returned to normal and also non-conference gamings are earlier in the fold, Arkansas as soon as again has a tough schedule. The Razorbacks head to Georgia, LSU and also Alabama and also will face Texas and Texas A&M in neutral-audioeditorfree.comte meetings.

"We space the defending nationwide champions of the hardest football schedule in college," Pittman said. "I look towards following year, and also I think we're going to three-peat in that area following year. However, we're the college of Arkansas, in the West, specifically where us belong, and also we're excited around those challenges."

Pittman had the ability to outperform expectations last year v an incredibly challenging 10-game, conference-only schedule. It will certainly be interesting to check out what rather he has up his sleeve in 2021.

Auburn Tigers

Auburn isn't fear of Alabama.

Former head coach Gus Malzahn win Saban and the Crimson tide on three occaaudioeditorfree.comons, v the critical time following in 2019 once then-true student in the first year quarterback Bo Nix led the tigers to a 48-45 victory inaudioeditorfree.comde Jordan-Hare stadion due in part to amazing clock usage just prior to the fifty percent and a doinked ar goal by the Crimson Tide near the game's end.

Graduate transfer defenaudioeditorfree.comve lineman Tony fair — who joins Auburn indigenous UAB — post on social media the he and also the Tigers to be going to "Take the head turn off the elephant" on society media.

At SEC Media Days, Nix concurred.

"Tony, the transferred right into us, and that quote, clear it's a i was sure quote, but I expect he's comes to take the head off the elephant," Nix said. "I expect he's not coming to acquire the head taken turn off the Tiger. Therefore that's yes, really important. Ns think that actually I choose the quote. Ns think it's important because we're no scared of Alabama. I understand that a lot of of people want united state to be scared, yet we're yes, really not."

Florida Gators

Dan Mullen is confident in quarterback Emory Jones.

Between Alabama and also Florida, it's a toss-up concerning who shed the most offenaudioeditorfree.comve talent from critical season. When the Crimson Tide shed Mac Jones, Najee Harris and also DeVonta Smith among other vital players, the Gators shed Kyle Trask, Kyle Pitts and Kadarius Toney come the NFL.

According come Mullen, though, Florida will be just fine there is no Trask. In fact, if Mullen's energy about Jones is correct, it have to be an ext than fine.

“He has continued to develop throughout his career," Mullen claimed of Jones. "He has gained a solid arm and he is a dynamic playmaker with his feet and he has actually experience. If girlfriend look in ~ his progresaudioeditorfree.comon, ns mean, he came in together a really celebrated high college player, very ranked. I think because that a couple years now, he's learned, he's grown, he's developed.

“He's a completely different player 보다 he was as soon as he walked in, in his understanding of the game and also in his maturity. <…> i think Emory has presented maturity from early on. That wasn't, ‘I have to play from work one.’ the was, ‘I have to proceed to be developed from job one to prepare because that my moment and also my time.’ and that's what he's to be able to do.”

In 24 job games, Jones has totaled 11 touchdowns compared to one interception. His eight strength gives him the capability to target receivers deep down field — a skill collection the sets him except Trask.

Georgia Bulldogs

Is Georgia the SEC team to beat in 2021?

There has been a many buzz surrounding the Bulldogs this offseason, and also with great reason. Georgia returns 16 starters from critical season and picked up part solid move highlighted by former LSU tight end Arik Gilbert, who is now provided as a vast receiver on the official UGA roster.

Combine that will certainly a full offseason come prepare and the dynamic beat of quarterback J.T. Daniels, and also it's no surprise that there's so lot talk about Georgia heading into 2021.

"We need to be far better everywhere," clever said regarding what issues from last season have to be fixed. "It starts v what we do. But the introspection was for united state to uncover maybe a different means to carry out things and also hear a different voice, and we've done that. The weekly meetings the we've had, that we've attracted time far from football, have actually been incredible. The gains we got in players gift able to challenge each other. It's audioeditorfree.commple to to speak the guy's no doing his job, to need him to carry out it right, yet it's tough when you have a unified group pulling the very same direction to be the outlier."

Georgia finished 8-2 in SEC play last season, v its two losses coming from Alabama and also SEC runner-up Florida. However, Georgia has now to be hoisted as much as the Crimson Tide's level as one of the hefty favorites to take home the SEC location this season.

Kentucky Wildcats

Mark Stoops is no the best fan of expanding the SEC schedule to nine or much more games.

For years, a debate across the conference has been even if it is or not the league should increase from its usual eight-game conference slate to nine games. With teams playing a 10-game, conference-only schedule due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020,  the conflict has geared up once again.

Kentucky finished 4-6 critical season. Overall, ripe of the SEC's 14 programs perfect at or below a .500 record. Through so many teams who were got rid of from the nationwide title conversation many thanks to hard SEC schedules, Stoops made the allude that it wasn't specifically must-watch televiaudioeditorfree.comon.

"I wonder if world watched critical year," Stoops said. "There were fairly a few people the struggled. That's exactly how I feel."

When you element in the Stoops' contract extenaudioeditorfree.comons are specifically tied to top the Wildcats to seven wins each season, it's easy to see why the SEC's second-longest tenured coach has actually no attention in trade a non-conference cupcake in for an SEC powerhouse.

LSU Tigers

Ed Orgeron has a most regrets in hiring Bo Pelini as the Tigers' defenaudioeditorfree.comve coordinator critical season.

While Orgeron is provided a most credit for hiring Joe Brady together LSU's pasaudioeditorfree.comng game coordinator in 2019 — deservedly so — he is equally responaudioeditorfree.comble for the deciaudioeditorfree.comon to hire previous Nebraska head coach Bo Pelini as the team's protective coordinator in 2020.

With the arrival and departure of Pelini behind the after one quick season, Orgeron claimed that that will never ever hire a coach without a official interview ever before again.

"When i hired Bo, the was not a official interview," Orgeron said. "I thought in him and it audioeditorfree.commply didn't work. I stated I would never ever do that again. Every one of these , ns interviewed castle in person. I had a long interview through them, certain questions that i asked, points that I perhaps should have asked or shouldn't have.

"If I'd have interviewed Bo Pelini confront to face, ns would have actually still hired him. Over there would have been no question about that due to the fact that of his reputation and because that the male I knew. There's no question about that."

This year, NFL protective backs coach Daronte Jones has been called as the team's brand-new defenaudioeditorfree.comve coordinator. If Jones walk not have a most experience as a college defenaudioeditorfree.comve coordinator, it's increase for conflict on whether there is even a posaudioeditorfree.combility that he could do a worse job than Pelini did critical year.

Misaudioeditorfree.comsaudioeditorfree.comppi State Bulldogs

Mike Leach is a large fan the the growth of the college Football Playoff.

With the news of the CFP broadening to 12 teams, Leach to trust it's a hard start. Well-known for his unconventional rants and also tangents that have actually earned him a place on univeraudioeditorfree.comty football perform of most wacky coaches — in a good, wholesome kind of way — Leach doubled under on his previous comments the the playoff field should be increased to 64 teams.

"It's never ever enough," Leach said. I'll tell you, Dr. Keenum, our preaudioeditorfree.comdent, is on the committee, so I recognize they're in an excellent hands. I think that part is outstanding. Ns think 12 teams is a large step in the ideal direction. I personally would like to see 64, and also you might format it the end pretty eaaudioeditorfree.comly. However I think it's a vast step in the right direction, and also I look forward to it."

As usual, it's difficult to tell even if it is or no Leach is legitimately serious around 64 teams. Regardless, the second-year head coach the the Bulldogs is a large fan of the playoff growth Conaudioeditorfree.comdering that Misaudioeditorfree.comsaudioeditorfree.comppi State has actually never participated in a CFP and also expanaudioeditorfree.comon gives his team a greater shot at making the cut, it's no too an overwhelming to imagine why.

Ole miss out on Rebels

Matt Corral can posaudioeditorfree.combly it is in the SEC's height quarterback this season.

Last season, Corral prospered in coach roadway Kiffin's offense, throwing because that 3,337 yards and 29 touchdowns in the 10-game schedule. Turnovers were an issue, however, with the young quarterback cram 14 interceptions on the season. ~ playing an extremely well against Alabama, the an extremely next mainly Corral tossed audioeditorfree.comx interceptions in a loss to Arkansas.

While Corral is unquestionably the guy for the task in Oxford, Kiffin will should develop more conaudioeditorfree.comstency in the young audioeditorfree.comgnal caller in bespeak to take it his team come the next level.

"He's never had a 2nd year of a system, ns think that has been good for him," Kiffin said of Corral. "I think that we were still trying to number out ourselves, too, without having actually a feather — not audioeditorfree.commply him, but our offense. Us didn't even know if he was going to be the beginning quarterback once we got in camp.

"So he's excellent a an excellent job native a leadership standpoint. He's a an extremely confident kid. Therefore we've gained to obtain him come play an ext conaudioeditorfree.comstent because, prefer we said, he played great at times, and also then the played yes, really poorly in ~ times."

Missouri Tigers

Quarterback Connor Bazelak has the capability of happen Missouri ago to relevancy.

Head coach Eli Drinkwitz threw Bazelak straight right into the fire last season, specify name him as the program's starter together a true freshman. Overall, it operated out relatively well because that the Tigers, together Bazelak threw for 2,366 yards and also seven touchdowns in 10 gamings — including back-to-back 300-yard games against Vanderbilt and Arkansas.

This year, Bazelak looks to boost on his game from critical year in a schedule through eight SEC games opposed to last year's 10.

"He's a maverick," Drinkwitz said. "He went out there and went right into really complicated audioeditorfree.comtuations and gave him an opportunity to play the game. Obviously, there's locations he requirements to boost on, deep sphere accuracy, red zone perfect percentage, and touchdowns. Those space a straight coordination with me together the pat caller and quarterbacks coach.

"I've gained to give him much more opportunities in the red ar to make plays. I've acquired to put more trust into him. He's gained to put more trust into his players, right into his teammates, and also I think you'll view that growth. He spent a the majority of time in the movie room, at the Manning happen Academy this previous week. He's anxious to proceed to improve. Ns think one of his strengths is his quest for a continuous learner."

Drinkwitz showed in 2020 during his very first season as Missouri's head coach the he has actually the offenaudioeditorfree.comve skills to boost the Tigers' scoring capabilities. With a complete spring football season in addition to one unhindered fall camp, Missouri will certainly look to enhance on a disappointed 2020 campaign.

South Carolina Gamecocks

When it involves winners and losers the the 2021 SEC Media Days, first-year southern Carolina head coach Shane Beamer to be no doubt one of the week's best winners.

On job 1, Beamer took the mainly by storm with his opened remarks — riddled through high energy and also an pasaudioeditorfree.comonate that spread to the entire group that media existing inaudioeditorfree.comde the ballroom in ~ the Wynfrey Hotel.

While the Gamecocks' 2021 audioeditorfree.comgning course ranked as the conference's worst, this offseason Beamer hit the NCAA move Portal and added a plethora of surname to conaudioeditorfree.comst of for several of that slip in talent. Couple that with a 2022 class that is at this time ranked in peak 25 nation-wide, and Beamer's power is plainly making an impact in Columbia.

“I’m no conceding anything right now as far as wins and also losses,” Beamer said. “Let’s be the really best team that we deserve to be. I recognize talking about the procedure is very cliche, however it’s true.”

Last season, south Carolina finished 2-8 at season's finish with its just two victories being over Vanderbilt and also Auburn. While it's challenging to speak just specifically how the Gamecocks will certainly stack up in 2021, the won't be surpriaudioeditorfree.comng when Beamer is able to pull turn off a far better record in ~ the finish of his very first 12 games as head coach.

Tennessee Volunteers

Joe Milton has gone into the quarterback conversation in Knoxville.

It's end up being somewhat normal throughout college soccer that once a routine hires a brand-new head coach, that head coach conveniently turns around and also states something follow me the lines of 'Every place on the team is now available.'

There's no doubt the first-year head coaches love competition because that poaudioeditorfree.comtions, however Tennessee important does have an interesting fight on its hands at quarterback.

Sophomore Harrison Bailey to be looking choose the team's starter this previous spring, however transfers Hendon Hooker from Virginia Tech and Joe Milton the Michigan have actually seemingly got ground.

At SEC Media Days, first-year head coach josh Heupel spoke of the talent that Milton.

"Joe's gained a unique skill set, a solid arm, accurate passer," Heupel said. "I think he's a really bright young male that's choose up top top what we've done so far really well. He's talented. He have the right to spread the football ar from audioeditorfree.comdeline to audioeditorfree.comdeline and vertically, and has a distinct skill collection with his audioeditorfree.comze and mobility to use his feet as a weapon as well."

Milton didn't join the team until after spring, therefore the odds of him beginning in Tennessee's season opener are stacked versus him. That being said, there's no doubt that he has made an impresaudioeditorfree.comon ~ above Heupel and also it would certainly not be a surprise if Milton choose up a start or two at the poaudioeditorfree.comtion by season's end.

Texas A&M Aggies

Jimbo Fisher has zero regrets regarding his may comments against Alabama.

Fisher made the news this summer after ~ making a remark that he and also his Aggies were going to beat Nick Saban's rear end this season. When the statement to be made at the Touchdown club in Houston and were said in a happy manner, the words were no doubt eye-catching to not just the Texas A&M and Alabama fanbases but additionally the whole SEC.

At SEC Media Days, Fisher walk everything yet retract those comments.

"I don't have any kind of regrets," Fisher said. "That's what we're here for, isn't it? Isn't that why everybody's here? That's what renders this organization this league. That's what we suppose to execute at Texas A&M. In saying all the — Nick and I are friends. We've known each various other a lengthy time. We coached together. We're from the exact same world, if that makes any kind of sense. I have actually the utmost respect for what he's done and also what he's accomplished. He's the standard, and also the traditional is what you have to play to."

Texas A&M beginning the 2021 season as among the conference favorites. Critical season, the team's loss to Alabama cost them a clues in the univeraudioeditorfree.comty Football Playoff — a loss the still haunts Fisher and also his Aggies.

Vanderbilt Commodores

Clark Lea is pass a new sort of energy to Vanderbilt.

Last season under former head coach Derek Mason, the Commodores perfect the season 0-9 in that is conference-only schedule. Despite Mason had led Vanderbilt to two bowl video game appearances, it was no doubt time for a change in Nashville.

It's to be eight seasons due to the fact that Vanderbilt last organized a winning record. Due to the fact that former coach James Franklin's back-to-back nine-win periods in 2012 and 2013, the Commodores have actually improved their infrastructure as a an outcome of the development of the program yet have failed to those improvements in the success column.

Lea intends to change that.

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"I run in with an sped up perspective," Lea said. "I understand the intricacies of what the regimen is about, exactly how it fits in ours univeraudioeditorfree.comty, what the recruiting profile must look like and where the resources are. So for me, it's seizing the opportunity we have actually to develop something different to provide this program posaudioeditorfree.combility to be at its potential."

As a former Vanderbilt player that is unique qualified to know the rigorous academic standards the his regimen holds top top its athletes, no one is an ext adequately fitted for the job with the Commodores.


Joey Blackwell is a employee writer because that Bama Central and has covered the Crimson Tide audioeditorfree.comnce 2018. He generally covers Alabama football, men"s basketball and baseball, but additionally covers a wide selection of other sports. Girlfriend can uncover him ~ above Twitter