FILE - In this Sept. 9, 2017, file photo, LSU coach Ed Orgeron raises his arms to celebrate a field goal against Chattanooga during the second half of an NCAA college football game in Baton Rouge, La. For seven years from 2006-12, parity in college football meant determining which of the Southeastern Conference's contenders would finish as the national champion. These days, it feels like the only national contender from the SEC resides in Tuscaloosa _ where Alabama has been the conference's lone representative in each of the first three College Football Playoffs and is the league's only team in this week's Associated Press top 10. LSU is ranked No. 12. (AP Photo/Rusty Costanza, File)

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — For seven years from 2006-12, parity in college football meant determining which of the Southeastern Conference’s contenders would finish as the national champion.

These days, it feels as though the only national contender from the SEC resides in Tuscaloosa, where Alabama has been the conference’s lone representative in each of the first three College Football Playoffs.

After Auburn’s loss to defending national champion Clemson last weekend, the top-ranked Crimson Tide is the SEC’s only team in the top 10 of this week’s Associated Press poll .

“Alabama, they deserve to be one in everything all the time until somebody proves them different,” Arkansas coach Bret Bielema said.

The lack of an early season SEC contender behind the Crimson Tide is a troubling sign for what has been long thought of as college football’s most dominant conference, particularly coming off a season when no school other than Alabama managed to finish with double-digit wins.

Even more problematic for the SEC teams chasing Nick Saban and Co. is how few out-of-conference chances they have left this season against top competition.

The conference has only four games left against currently ranked competition outside the SEC to earn the trust of voters — and the playoff …read more

Source:: Usatoday – Sports

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