The Southeastern Conference is widely regarded as the best conference in college football. A large reason for the success of the conference is its “SEC speed” and athleticism that allows college players to compete at a level similar to the NFL.
But does the SEC really help you prepare for the NFL?
If you ask former Alabama Crimson Tide star turned Oakland Raiders standout Amari Cooper, the answer is yes. In fact, Cooper says there isn’t much of a talent gap between the SEC and the pros.
“Overall guys are better, but overall guys are smarter,” Cooper said on SiriusXM NFL Radio, as transcribed by Cameron DaSilva of FOXSports. “And that’s the biggest thing: Guys are smarter. The talent level, to me, probably is about the same coming from the SEC. But they’re smarter, so it makes them better.”
As a rookie, Cooper looked like one of the most talented youngsters in the league as he hauled in 72 catches for 1,070 yards and six touchdowns.
It’s hard to say Cooper had a difficult transition to the NFL since he made such an immediate impact on one of the league’s rising young teams, but to say the SEC and NFL are similar in talent still seems like quite the reach.
After all, who is the last SEC quarterback to succeed in the pros?