To understand SEC football, you have to know something about SEC football history.

If you've spent any time at all on this web site, you already know the Southeastern Conference (SEC) is the best college sports conference and that the biggest reason for that is because of SEC football.

With Texas A&M and Missouri joining the conference in 2012, the Southeastern conference now has 14 members. You can read current 2012 previews of each football team from the links below.

The SEC was created in 1932 by 13 schools, (first played football in '33) located about the Appalachian Mountains area. The schools departed from the Southern Conference to establish their own conference.

The founding 13 members of the SEC were the:

  • University of Alabama;
  • University of Florida;
  • University of Georgia;
  • University of Kentucky;
  • University of Mississippi;
  • University of Tennessee;
  • Auburn University;
  • Louisiana State University;
  • Mississippi State University;
  • Vanderbilt University;
  • Sewanee;
  • Georgia Tech; and,
  • Tulane.

Today, the first 10 teams (of the 13) listed above remain members of the SEC.

Sewanee left the SEC in 1940 and is currently part of the Division III Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference. Georgia Tech departed the SEC in 1964 and later became a founding member of the Metro Conference, until joining the Atlantic Coast Conference in 1978. Tulane left the SEC in 1966, also to become a charter member of the Metro Conference until the establishment of the Conference USA in 1995.

In 1990, the University of Arkansas (from the Southwest Conference) and the University of South Carolina (from the ACC) joined the SEC. They began play in the SEC in 1992. The addition of these teams upped the total number of SEC schools to 12, facilitating the creation of the Western and Eastern Divisions.

Some of the best all-time SEC football players have included Herschell Walker, Joe Namath, Bo Jackson, and the father-sons contribution of the Manning clan (Archie, Eli, and Peyton).

A few of the best all-time SEC football coaches have included Paul "Bear" Bryant (Alabama and Kentucky), Shug Jordan (Auburn), and Bob Neyland (Tennessee).

SEC football stadiums are generally some of the largest in the country. Some of the best SEC football stadiums have become American cultural icons. For instance, the University of Tennessee's Neyland Stadium holds the largest capacity in the SEC and third largest in the NCAA with 104,079 seats. Some have called it the best stadium in college football.

Here's a brand new article listing one person's educated opinion ranking the SEC football stadiums from 1 - 12.

SEC Football History: Rivalries

The heart of SEC football is its rivalries. In fact, SEC football history is largely defined by those rivalries. Each of the 12 SEC schools has two or three major rivalry games each year. Some of the best all-time SEC football rivalries include:

  • Alabama vs. Auburn (Iron Bowl);
  • Alabama vs Tennesee ("Third Saturday in October");
  • Arkansas vs LSU (Battle for the Golden Boot;
  • Auburn vs Georgia (Deep South's Oldest Rivalry);
  • Florida vs Georgia (World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party); and,
  • Mississippi State vs Ole Miss (Egg Bowl).

SEC Football History: National Championships

Since 1920, SEC football teams have captured 30 National Championships (depending on which poll you rely on). They are:

  • Alabama -- (10); 1934, 1941, 1961, 1964, 1965, 1973, 1978, 1979, 1992 and 2009;
  • Georgia - (2); 1942 and 1980;
  • Tennessee - (6); 1938, 1940, 1950, 1951, 1967, 1998;
  • Arkansas (1); 1964 (went 11-0; shared title with 1 loss Alabama -- thanks to RM for this info);
  • Auburn (1); 1957; 2010
  • LSU (3); 1958, 2003, 2007;
  • Ole Miss (3); 1959, 1960, 1962; and,
  • Florida (3); 1996, 2006, 2008. 

Here's an article about Auburn's 2011 BCS National Championship. In that article you'll find lots of up-to-date info about the glorious history of SEC football.

SEC Football History: Forever Being Updated

You can find many, many more articles about the history of Southeastern Conference football at SEC Football. And, if you love college football history, you'll enjoy this take on College Football Yesterday and Today.

Here's a "few" more:



  1. 2012 LSU Tigers Football Preview
  2. 2012 Alabama Crimson Tide Football Preview
  3. 2012 Auburn Tigers Football Preview
  4. 2012 Arkansas Razorbacks Football Preview
  5. 2012 Texas A&M Aggies Football Preview
  6. 2012 Mississippi State Bulldogs Football Preview
  7. 2012 Ole Miss Rebels Football Preview
  8. 2012 Georgia Bulldogs Football Preview
  9. 2012 South Carolina Gamecocks Football Preview
  10. 2012 Florida Gators Football Preview
  11. 2012 Missouri Tigers Football Preview
  12. 2012 Vanderbilt Commodores Football Preview
  13. 2012 Tennessee Volunteers Football Preview
  14. 2012 Kentucky Wildcats Football Preview





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SEC Football History to SEC Football

By Mo Johnson, Copyright © 2006-2017

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