Don't freak out when you read the next sentence because it might come as a total shock to the college football world. Alabama is expected to be good in 2018 -- really good.
According to odds on BetOnline.ag, the Crimson Tide are once again the favorites to win the SEC title this year, followed by defending SEC champion Georgia and defending SEC West champion Auburn. As for how the rest are positioned, well, you're just going to have to keep scrolling, aren't you?
Odds to win the 2018 SEC Championship
Here's some takeaways from these odds.
Best bet -- Georgia: Usually the "best bet" in terms of odds is the team with the most realistic chance of winning that also has the best value. But in the case of the SEC, Georgia is really the only pick. Why? The consensus will be that, barring a massive change in the SEC landscape, a rematch of the 2018 College Football Playoff National Championship will be held this December in Atlanta. Because of that, taking Georgia at +300 as opposed to Alabama at +150 seems like a pretty solid bet. Both are elite, they clearly are comparable in terms of depth and talent, and Georgia provides much better value than Alabama.
Long shot value -- South Carolina: Above, I told you that Georgia was the best bet based on these odds. Where could the speed bump come for the Bulldogs? How about Week 2 at South Carolina. The Gamecocks return a solid quarterback in Jake Bentley along with stud wide receiver Bryan Edwards and playmaking talent Deebo Samuel, who will be back from injury. Plus, the defense is exceedingly well coached. If the Gamecocks can spring an upset of the Bulldogs, they'd hold a one-game lead and the tiebreaker (essentially a two-game lead). If you look at South Carolina's schedule after that, it's not like it's a gauntlet. A win in Week 2 would give South Carolina a huge edge, change the landscape of the SEC East and might even get the Gamecocks to Atlanta. A good 60 minutes in Mercedes-Benz Stadium and that +2000 will help pay off your student loans.
Hold your horses -- Florida: Yes, we could say Ole Miss here since, you know, the Rebels are ineligible for the postseason. That's way too easy. A Gators team with quarterback issues and a new (albeit accomplished) coach that is coming off a bad defensive season (by Florida standards) is more likely to win the SEC than South Carolina and LSU? Hard pass. Florida might have moments of greatness, but those will be followed closely by moments of ineptitude. The cross-division rivalry with LSU, a rotating cross-division game against a good Mississippi State team and the World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party vs. Georgia makes it unlikely that the Gators will have enough juice to get to Atlanta.