My 1st (and maybe last) Annual SEC Media Guide Cover Rankings:
1st – Arkansas Razorbacks
Darren McFadden is holding the ball out like candy to the SEC babies and at the last second he’s going to take it away and break their hearts. Peyton Hillis looks like he’s about ready to run you over and Marcus Monk and Felix Jones (in the background again) look like a couple extras hired by the Sopranos. When was the last time you saw a media guide in any BCS conference that had the two best running backs in the nation, the best wide receiver in the nation and basically the four best players in the entire league on the cover together? This cover is just a flippin’ sweet collectors item already!
3rd – Ole Miss Rebels
No other cover even deserves to be 2nd so that's why the rest of the list begins at 3rd here with Ole Miss. I just like the fact that they buy into the motto of “Never Quit” because so many teams out there quit everyday. In fact the majority of the division one football teams will tell you that they just plain quit if things go bad. It’s good to know we have Ole Miss going against the grain and never quitting amongst this pitiful nation of quitters that we are. Actually, this is a well thought out and touching tribute on the cover. The bust that the team is surrounding is that of former Rebel, “Chucky” Mullins who was paralyzed making a tackle back in 1989 against Vanderbilt and passed away due to blood clot caused by his paralysis in 1991. Props to Ole Miss for a thoughtful cover.
4th – Florida Gators
Flaunt it while you’ve got it! The Gators mine as well promote their SEC and national titles now, because they probably won’t have another anytime soon. They say physical beauty can be fleeting and this is all Florida has right now. Florida is the proverbial hot chick in school, but at some point they’ll need some plastic surgery if they ever hope to regain the elite status they currently have.
5th - Vanderbilt Commodores
These guys look pissed. I realize they go to Vanderbilt and their I.Q.s are obviously off the charts, but these guys look like they are going to beat the hell out of you and then kick your ass on an advanced physics test. And, hey, doesn’t anyone smile for pictures anymore? I would think covers like these tend to scare young children and senior citizens. How bout we get some smiling Commodores next year?
Smiles everyone, smiles!
6th – South Carolina Gamecocks
You’ve got a few action shots and Visor Man right in the middle of things. Their win over Georgia really helped this cover.
7th – Tennessee Volunteers
This is a pretty good collage of things and includes the only known photo in existence of Philip Fulmer smiling during a game. I think I would have a hard time telling someone to meet me on the corner of Peyton Manning and Philip Fulmer with a straight face. I hear it’s a popular spot for the famous Tennessee hookers though.
8th – LSU Tigers
Do these guys look very scary? I say no. You just can’t be scary wearing yellow pants. Once again notice the lack of smiles. I think though in this case that just comes with having to play for Les Miles.
9th – Auburn Tigers
I know the good folks at Auburn were trying to go all “retro” but basically they make four players look like it’s the 1940s at Auburn and were the 40’s really that good for Auburn? No. (The '50s were, though)
10th – Georgia Bulldogs
This would have ranked a little higher if not for their loss last weekend to South Carolina. Now, #96, Brandon Coutu, looks stupid on the cover flashing the #1 signs. If they could air brush those out and re-issue the media guide cover, I think it would much better for all involved, because as-is it promotes false hope among Georgia fans. By the way, Coutu is the kicker. Granted, he’s a senior, and he’s good, but dang, if your kicker is front and center on the media guide cover, is that really a very good omen?
11th – Kentucky Wildcats
Aaahhck! Wait, no… Aaaaahhhhcccckkkk! This is absolutely horrible. Did they spill blue paint on the original cover and decide, “hey, this looks great, let’s go with it!”? And what’s with the “Believe in Blue”?
Personally, I believe the children are our future. Teach them well, and let them lead the way. But, to ask me to believe in a color that I already believe in… I don’t get it. How about “We Bleed Blue, How Bout You?”
12th – Mississippi State
We have no players to promote, no championships, no hopes, no dreams, no imagination or really any pride at all. Basically, we just don’t really care that much. The only thing we have is a picture of our assistant equipment manager holding one of our football helmets. The hell with it, let’s go with that. This simple photo will save us tons of money and we can cut the art department out of next year’s budget.
13th – Alabama Crimson Tide
We are supposed to be one of the nation’s most historic programs with some of the greatest players and coaches to ever play the game. We just spent millions of dollars hiring Nick Saban to bring us back to glory, so screw the seniors who have put in thousands of hours of hard work to have a great senior year. This cover has “egomaniac” written all over it. Am I missing something? Is Saban starting this week at quarterback or tailback or maybe linebacker? How many other covers feature the coach all by himself? Ummmm... none. “The Process Begins” doesn’t sound very Alabama-like either. Don’t you think “You Better Win, Boy” or “Dead Man Walking” would be better cover titles? Couldn’t they have at least made Saban wear a suit or carry a big whoop ass stick in his hand? Better yet, they should have made him pose holding dead carcasses of tigers, hogs, gators, and wildcats while he was all bloodied and beaten like he had killed all these animals with his bare hands.
Up next: The Hog Blog will turn its attention to this Saturday's game against the Alabama Liquid Tide.