HOOEVER, Ala. -- The Florida Gators proved the SEC media wrong a season ago, coming a goalline fumble against Georgia from possibly playing for the SEC championship.

A season after winning 11 games, coach Will Muschamp's team once again is picked to finished third in the SEC East division, behind South Carolina and Georgia. Florida received 19 first-place votes, compared with 75 for the Gamecocks and 149 for the Bulldogs.

Meanwhile, two-time defending national champion Alabama is picked by a wide margin to win the SEC West. The Tide received 225 first-place votes, compared with 11 for Texas A&M and seven for LSU.

No other teams in either division received votes.

Alabama is predicted overwhelmingly to win the conference, receiving 182 votes. Georgia (38), South Carolina (18), Texas A&M (4) and LSU (1) also received votes to win the SEC.

Nick Saban is not fitting his team for rings quite yet. The Tide coach pointed out Thursday that in the past 21 years, the media has picked the winner just four times.

"If I was 4-17, I’d be back in West Virginia pumping gas at my daddy’s station," he said.

SEC EAST

  • 1. Georgia (149 first-place votes)
  • 2. South Carolina (75)
  • 3. Florida (19)
  • 4. Vanderbilt
  • 5. Tennessee
  • 6. Missouri
  • 7. Kentucky

SEC WEST

  • 1. Alabama (225)
  • 2. Texas A&M (11)
  • 3. LSU (7)
  • 4. Ole Miss
  • 5. Auburn
  • 6. Mississippi State
  • 7. Arkansas

SEC CHAMPION

  • 1. Alabama (182)
  • 2. Georgia (38)
  • 3. South Carolina (18)
  • 4. Texas A&M (4)
  • 5. LSU (1)

Email Edgar Thompson at egthompson@orlandosentinel.com. Read the Swamp Things blog at www.orlandosentinel.com/swampthings. Follow our UF coverage on Twitter @osgators.