Charles Barkley Ruffles Feathers With SEC Football Take

Charles Barkley is an SEC guy. Really, he’s an Auburn guy, but that means that he’s plenty familiar with the conference. One thing you’re going to get from Barkley — at least most of the time — is his unfiltered content and opinions.

The man is known for saying what’s on his mind, regardless of who it offends.

Barkley’s frank talk continued at an appearance at the Regions Tradition Celebrity Pro-Am down in Birmingham, Alabama on Wednesday. During the media availability, the former Auburn and NBA basketball star was asked a football question: what does he think about the perception that there’s a sizable gap between Alabama football and the rest of the conference?

His answer? Well, in typical Barkley fashion, he replied, “That’s because it’s true.”

If you’re looking at things objectively, Barkley is correct.

Alabama is fresh off another national title under coach Nick Saban — for a total of six. It was also Saban’s second undefeated squad since he arrived in Tuscaloosa. Really, there isn’t just a gap between Alabama and the SEC. There’s a gap between Alabama and the rest of college football.

But some on social media still reacted in typical fashion. Barkley’s obvious observation ruffled a few feathers. One Twitter user even suggested that Alabama “raise the GPA to 3.0 and let’s see.” Folks, that’s a pretty damn funny response, but wait, there’s more.

Man, I love college football.

Follow Clint Lamb on Twitter @ClintRLamb.

Written by Clint Lamb

Clint Lamb is a College Football Writer for OutKick. Managing Editor for Roll Tide Wire. Sports radio host for The Bullpen on 730/103.9 The UMP. Co-host for The 'Bama Beat podcast through The Tuscaloosa News and


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  1. I picture Danny Kanell falling all over himself and choking on his kale pineapple smoothie trying to get to his phone looking to troll someone…anyone…after that one. It made him so happy.

    Let’s compare apples to apples. If you took Alabama, Ohio state, Oklahoma, and Clemson out of each of their respective conferences the last decade, and compared the remainders, the SEC is still hands down ahead of all of those other conferences. I’m not sure what this whole angle is trying to say exactly, I think many are in the denial stage of conference grief. I think this argument may actually show the SEC is even more dominant than we first realized. It’s nothing personal, the SEC is just dominating this era of football like Notre Dame, the Big 8, the Pac 10, Big 10 and the military academies did in years past. It’s a cycle. It won’t last forever, but it’s lasting for a while. No need to deny it.

      • Haha, Yes. My team’s in that “also ran” group unfortunately. Again, you have to compare apples to apples between conferences though. Those are the bottom half of the SEC in general. Compare bottoms to bottoms across conferences and there’s still a clear gap in talent. It’s not just Bama creating the gap. Also, all of those schools you listed have still had periods of success the last 10 years, so even the lower half in the SEC is pretty dang solid over time. Again, it’s nothing inherently superior about the SEC over other conferences, it’s just a migration of talent over the last 30 years away from the blue blood Midwestern power schools to the south. The SEC has simply recognized and taken advantage of the change, and know how to recruit them. It wasn’t always like this, and will change again no doubt. In 10 years it may be the ACC dominating.

        • There is no question that Alabama is head and shoulders ahead of the rest of college football. And the SEC has some very, very good teams like Georgia, and usually LSU and Florida. Also, its without question that the PAC 12 has turned into a dumpster fire, leaving the ACC and Big 10 as the other 2 major conferences.

          I just feel that if you did what you said, remove Clemson and OSU and others, you’d see that the also-rans are evenly matched. Its what we see every bowl season, which is about the only time those teams play each other. Not saying the SEC sucks, but schools like Auburn and Wisconsin are both strong and disappointing every year.

  2. Facts are Facts, You don’t have to like them, or believe them (looking at you coronabro).
    The great thing about college football is everybody gets an opinion, but 18-23 year old’s get to settle it all on the field. Come on August.

  3. Lmfao well when the NCAA is fully willing to punish every single other Program for minimal recruiting violations and ignore all the obvious evidence and even a former assistant on video talking about the countless ones we all already knew Alabama is using to get ahead every season then nothing will change. I don’t think Nick Saban was ever a good coach a master manipulator and recruiter sure but not a high level x’s and o’s guy. He’s also the biggest bitch whenever expanding the playoffs are brought up which tells you what he REALLY thinks about more competition dude is a total fraud ego maniac.

    • In Saban’s defense, he and Alabama have totally dominated the college football landscape for a long time now. As a result, he gets the best players and gets rich, the school gets titles, and most of his players go to to the NFL. They all get fat and rich. Why would he want to change that?

      • Oh I know for his own interests of course he doesn’t but in terms of the quality of the sport as someone who used to be a die hard CFB fan it has become soooo watered down over the last decade and is completely unwatchable when it comes to the CFP until the national championship game and that is usually just a rinse and repeat matchup from years prior. It’s horrible especially in comparison to CBB and even FCS imo I went to JMU and I am 10 times more stoked to watch the FCS playoffs year in and year out plus you have to win multiple games sometimes on the road in consecutive rounds to actually earn a Title. It’s complete bullshit the BCS has gotten away with selling fans that “injuries” and bowl sponsors are the only reason that D1 hasn’t expanded already.

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