SEC Announces Attendees, Schedule for Media Days

When the SEC comes to Birmingham, Alabama next week for its annual "Media Days" that combines hype and pageantry, the unofficial start to the college football season begins, with all eyes, as they deservedly should be, on the conference that has won the last seven NCAA national championships.

The conference just announced a television deal with ESPN, with legendary Paul Finebaum moving to Charlotte to build the foundation. It has the reigning back-to-back defending national champion Alabama Crimson Tide and the reigning Heisman Trophy winner, Texas A&M's Johnny Manziel, who may give the conference a run for its money in his ability to generate buzz without having to do much. The SEC also has Alabama head coach Nick Saban, who, with four titles in ten years, has a spot on college football's Mount Rushmore of coaches with John McKay, Frank Leahy, and Bear Bryant.

The conference has South Carolina's Jadeveon Clowney, who will most likely be, barring injury, the top pick in next year's NFL draft and a Heisman candidate. Clowney's coach, the old ball coach Steve Spurrier, who is not known for his shyness, will provide quotes to create a news cycle if there is not one. Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron and his more famous girlfriend, Katherine Webb, also are headline generators. Auburn will try to gain back its relevancy with new head coach Gus Malzahn-and his more-than-colorful wife. Yes, the SEC is also a freak show (Arkansas Bret Bielema and Kentucky's Mark Stoops seem primed and ready to rumble with the conference's coaches), and that is why people cannot stop watching--or talking about--the conference day-to-day.

Though Urban Meyer no longer coaches at the conference, Florida representatives will surely be asked about the Aaron Hernandez murder trial. LSU coach Les Miles himself will be worth the price of admission. Vanderbilt Coach James Franklin, who had four players kicked off the team because they may be involved in a sexual assault investigation, will also be swarmed. Franklin also referred to Alabama coach Nick Saban, who will do his best to look annoyed and deflect questions, as Satan during the offseason. Ole Miss fans have reason to be hopeful after the school had arguably its best recruiting class ever. Conveniently, Georgia, Alabama, LSU, and Vanderbilt all go on the final day, guaranteeing the conference, as if it needed more, will generate plenty of buzz, interest, and publicity for days after Media Days. 

The SEC, like no other conference, understands how to perpetually generate buzz and story lines to feed the voracious beast that is the modern media cycle. For the last seven years, though, the hype has not been unwarranted, as the conference has ended the season with college football's crown. This will be the final year before college football goes to a playoff system, and even if the SEC does not win its eighth straight national title, SEC Commissioner Mike Slive will go into the history books as an all-time great. 

The schedule, per the SEC, can be seen below. All times are Central. 

Tuesday, July 16

12:30 p.m.: Commissioner Mike Slive 

1-3:40 p.m.: FLORIDA
Head Coach Will Muschamp
QB Jeff Driskel 
DL Dominique Easley 
OL Jon Halapio 

1-3:40 p.m.: MISSOURI
Head Coach Gary Pinkel
QB James Franklin
WR L'Damian Washington
LB Andrew Wilson

3:50-6:20 p.m.: OLE MISS
Head Coach Hugh Freeze 
WR Donte Moncrief 
LB Mike Marry 
QB Bo Wallace 

3:50-6:20 p.m.: SOUTH CAROLINA
Head Coach Steve Spurrier 
DE Jadeveon Clowney 
WR/KR Bruce Ellington 
QB Connor Shaw 


Wednesday, July 17

8:10 a.m.: Steve Shaw, SEC Coordinator of Officials (Quotes/Video)

8:30-11:10 a.m: TEXAS A&M
Head Coach Kevin Sumlin 
DE Toney Hurd 
QB Johnny Manziel 
OT Jake Matthews 


8:30-11:10 a.m.: KENTUCKY
Head Coach Mark Stoops 
DT Donte Rumph 
RB Raymond Sanders
LB Avery Williamson


11:20 a.m.-2 p.m..: MISSISSIPPI STATE
Head Coach Dan Mullen 
DL Kaleb Eulls 
LB Benardrick McKinney
QB Tyler Russell

11:20 a.m.-2 p.m.: TENNESSEE
Head Coach Butch Jones 
OL Antonio Richardson 
OL Ja'Wuan James 
DL Jacques Smith 

2:20-5 p.m.: AUBURN
Head Coach Gus Malzahn 
CB Chris Davis 
DE Dee Ford
FB Jay Prosch 

2:20-5 p.m.: ARKANSAS
Head Coach Bret Bielema 
DE Chris Smith
C Travis Swanson 
FB Kiero Small 


Thursday, July 18


8:30-11:10 a.m.: LSU
Head Coach Les Miles 
WR Jarvis Landry
S Craig Loston
QB Zach Mettenberger 

8:30-11:10 a.m.: GEORGIA
Head Coach Mark Richt
TE Arthur Lynch 
QB Aaron Murray
DE Garrison Smith 

11:20 a.m.-2 p.m.: ALABAMA
Head Coach Nick Saban 
QB AJ McCarron 
LB C.J. Mosley 
OL Anthony Steen 

11:20 a.m.-2 p.m.: VANDERBILT
Head Coach James Franklin 
CB Andre Hal 
OT Wesley Johnson 
WR Jordan Matthews 


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