Where Texas football stands in early 2024 SEC power rankings

Steve Sarkisian's Texas football squad still has a lot to prove in the SEC in the eyes of 247Sports' Josh Pate for the upcoming 2024 season.
Steve Sarkisian, Texas football
Steve Sarkisian, Texas football / Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Texas football and head coach Steve Sarkisian embark on their first season in the SEC in 2024. Texas is on the upswing entering the SEC after winning the Big 12 Championship and making the program's first-ever appearance in the College Football Playoff during the 2023-24 season.

Expectations will be very high for the Longhorns again entering the 2024 season. Many way-too-early rankings peg the Longhorns as a top three or five team this year.

Texas football can make the 12-team Playoff in their first year in the SEC in 2024

Sarkisian's squad will be tested very early in the 2024 campaign, including a non-conference battle in Ann Arbor against the defending National Champion Michigan Wolverines in Week 2.

Texas also has high-stakes SEC matchups this upcoming season against the Georgia Bulldogs, rival Oklahoma Sooners, Florida Gators, and Texas A&M Aggies. The SEC will be more of a true test of how good Texas can be week in and week out.

There won't be as many easy matchups in the SEC as Texas had in the last couple of years in the Big 12.

So, where do Sarkisian and the Longhorns stand in the SEC picture early in the 2024 offseason?

Josh Pate of 247Sports ranked Texas as the third-best team in the conference in his early 2024 SEC power rankings. The only two teams Pate ranked ahead of the Longhorns in his early SEC power rankings for the 2024 season were the Alabama Crimson Tide and Georgia.

1. Georgia

2. Alabama

3. Texas

4. LSU

5. Oklahoma

6. Ole Miss

7. Tennessee

8. Texas A&M

9. Auburn

10. Mizzou

11. South Carolina

12. Kentucky

13. Florida

14. Arkansas

Despite beating Alabama in Tuscaloosa last season, Sarkisian and the Longhorns are still ranked lower in these SEC power rankings by Pate. Alabama also has the uncertainty of the coaching staff turnover in 2024 after the retirement of longtime legendary head coach Nick Saban earlier this offseason.

"On-field production matters a lot here, and unlike Georgia and Alabama, Texas has lost too many games to inexcusable opponents to merit being a Tier 1 program right now. I mean, they’ve lost to Texas Tech, Oklahoma State, TCU, Washington twice, Arkansas, West Virginia, Kansas and Baylor in the last three years. Georgia and Alabama haven’t done that. Texas is not on their level as a program yet."

Pate does mention that moving forward, he could see the argument that Texas could be better than Georgia and/or Alabama. He is one of many pundits Texas must convince can be an elite program in the SEC in 2024 and beyond.

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