The SEC's 30 best players: No. 10

Now that we’ve counted it down to the final 10, we’ll go one player a day until we get to the SEC’s top two players from this past season.

Once we’re finished, send me in your ranking of the Best 30 players in the SEC (based on what they did during the 2009 season), and I’ll post a few of them. That is, as long as you’re willing to provide your name and where you’re from.

We’re all about transparency on the SEC blog.

Here goes with the No. 10 selection:


No. 10: Antonio Coleman, DE, Auburn: In a lot of ways, Coleman was the antithesis of South Carolina’s Eric Norwood this past season. While Norwood had a red-hot start, it was Coleman who closed the season as hot as any defender in the league. He led the SEC with 10 sacks and 16.5 tackles for loss, and that’s despite playing with a cast for seven weeks. Coleman partially tore ligaments in his right wrist and was unable to use that hand the first part of the season. He only had 2.5 sacks and five tackles for loss through his first seven games, and frustration nearly got the best of him. But once the cast came off, he returned to form and had 7.5 sacks and 11.5 tackles for loss in his last six games. Coleman also led the Tigers with 12 quarterback hurries and blocked two kicks. A first-team All-SEC selection, Coleman finished his career third on Auburn’s all-time sacks list (24.5) and could wind up playing end or outside linebacker at the next level.

  • No. 11: Aaron Hernandez, TE, Florida

  • No. 12: Eric Norwood, OLB, South Carolina

  • No. 13: Brandon Spikes, LB, Florida

  • No. 14: Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU

  • No. 15: Carlos Dunlap, DE, Florida

  • No. 16: Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee

  • No. 17: Ben Tate, RB, Auburn

  • No. 18: Montario Hardesty, RB, Tennessee

  • No. 19: Mike Johnson, OG, Alabama

  • No. 20: Maurkice Pouncey, C, Florida

  • No. 21: Rennie Curran, LB, Georgia

  • No. 22: Randall Cobb, QB/WR, Kentucky

  • No. 23: Shay Hodge, WR, Ole Miss

  • No. 24: A.J. Green, WR, Georgia

  • No. 25: Pernell McPhee, DE, Mississippi State

  • No. 26: Malcolm Sheppard, DT, Arkansas

  • No. 27: Mark Barron, S, Alabama

  • No. 28: Terrence Cody, NG, Alabama

  • No. 29: Brandon LaFell, WR, LSU

  • No. 30: Julio Jones, WR, Alabama