The SEC tease teams

August, 11, 2011
8/11/11
9:00
AM ET
No one likes a tease. They ruin a perfectly good time, and in the SEC, we've seen a few teases in the past couple of seasons.

A tease team is a team that looks good during the spring or preseason camp, but somehow implodes during the season. It can also be a team that has high expectations, but just never puts it together.

Could there be one lurking in our midst as we speak? Possibly. If Alabama doesn't compete for a national championship, would you consider the season a failure? Some would. Or what if South Carolina doesn't win the East? That would be considered a major disappointment to a lot of people out there.

Here are some of those tease teams we've seen in this league over the past couple of years:

Georgia: The Bulldogs have been notorious for underachieving. In Mark Richt's second season, Georgia went 13-1, winning the SEC. The Bulldogs repeated as East champs in 2003 and won the SEC again in 2005. During that four-year span, the Bulldogs went an impressive 44-9. Georgia was bringing in some of the best recruiting classes in the SEC and it seemed like the Bulldogs would regularly compete for a national championship. However, Georgia has had double-digit victories just twice since 2005 and hasn't made it back to the SEC championship. Last season was the ultimate low point when the Bulldogs went 6-7, the first losing season since going 5-6 in 1996. This season, Georgia has a slew of talent, thanks to a stellar recruiting class that featured a group of Georgians dubbed the "Dream Team." If not for injuries and attrition on the offensive line and at running back, the Bulldogs would be battling South Carolina for the role of preseason favorite in the East. But there is talent to make a run. Can the Dawgs scrap the underachieving bug in 2011?

Ole Miss: Recent Ole Miss teams have been a little disappointing after that deadly preseason hype. After Houston Nutt's impressive 9-4 first season -- a season in which the Rebels upset eventual national champion Florida and won six straight games to end the season -- many had the Rebels competing for much more than just back-to-back Cotton Bowls. The Rebels entered the season ranked eighth in the country and rose as high as fourth before faltering during the middle of the season and losing to Mississippi State in the Egg Bowl. However, Ole Miss won its second straight Cotton Bowl. Last season, Ole Miss wasn't picked to bring home any trophies, but the 4-8 season was far from what was expected. The Rebels touted a much-heralded defense and brought in former Oregon standout Jeremiah Masoli to run the offense. Neither lived up to expectations and Ole Miss won just one conference game.

Florida: It's not like Florida consistently underachieved under Urban Meyer, but in 2009, everyone and their mother had Florida playing in back-to-back national championships. The Gators had what some considered Florida's best defense ever and had Tim Tebow back for his senior season. Even without Percy Harvin and Louis Murphy, many figured Florida's offense would be fine. Well, the offense was rarely explosive or intimidating and the Gators were eventually blown out by Alabama in the SEC championship. Florida throttled Cincinnati in the Sugar Bowl, going 13-1, but most of the Gator Nation's excitement left when those national championship hopes were destroyed. Before 2010, people expected John Brantley to blow up Florida's record books with his passing numbers, while running another explosive Meyer offense. Along with a mighty recruiting class, Florida had the look of a SEC contender. However, Brantley never fit into the spread attack and Florida's offense limped through an 8-5 season that included a blowout loss to Florida State, the first to the Seminoles since 2003.

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