That’s how many days are left until the first SEC football games of the season kick off; so what will you do between now and then?
Here are some big events and storylines ahead of the upcoming season, and a few suggestions for what to do to pass the time.
Three things to look forward to
1. SEC Spring Meetings
The annual SEC Spring Meetings will begin next week on May 31.
A plethora of issues, from budgets to rule changes, will be discussed. One of those new rules will center around a new replay process that uses a centralized location for reviews.
2. SEC Media Days
The coaches and select star players from all 14 SEC schools will descend on the Hyatt Regency Birmingham-Wynfrey Hotel in Hoover, Ala., from July 11-14. The four-day session will also include comments from SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey.
Look here to see when your favorite team’s representatives will take the podium.
3. “The Opening”
Prior to the SEC Media Days, one of the biggest annual college football recruiting events will be held by Nike in Beaverton, Ore.
Nike’s “The Opening” finals camp will take place from July 5-10. “The Opening” features 166 of the nation’s top high school players, who compete for the title of the country’s best player.
It’s a can’t-miss event for recruiting fans, and will be televised on ESPNU.
Three biggest questions heading into the season
1. Will Tennessee live up to the preseason hype?
The Vols are deep and experienced. Tennessee will return the majority of its offensive and defensive starters, including senior quarterback Joshua Dobbs, from last season’s team that won seven of its last eight games.
Tennessee will likely emerge from SEC Media Days as the favorite to win the SEC East. The only question is whether the Vols and fourth-year coach Butch Jones can handle the big expectations.
2. Can Alabama and Nick Saban go back-to-back … again?
If Alabama claims a second consecutive title in the 2016-17 season, the Crimson Tide will stand alone in history. Another championship would give the Tide four claimed back-to-back championships in the modern era, and the first of the College Football Playoff.
If not for an improbable Arkansas lateral, Alabama would not have made the SEC Championship Game and ultimately the College Football Playoff.
Will it be another season of close calls, or will Alabama control its own destiny on another championship run?
3. Who will be this season’s sleeper team?
One team always seems to turn heads with its performance each season. In 2015, it was the Florida Gators and first-year coach Jim McElwain that began the season 6-0 and made an unexpected run to the SEC Championship Game.
Could McElwain do it again with new likely starting quarterback sophomore Luke Del Rio? Or will first-year South Carolina coach Will Muschamp, Missouri coach Barry Odom or new Georgia coach Kirby Smart pull off a McElwain-esque run?
In the West, could you see last season’s preseason favorite Auburn bounce back from a 7-6 season? Will Mississippi State still be a force without quarterback Dak Prescott? Is Arkansas’ returning experience enough to break through? Has Texas A&M finally found stability at the quarterback position in Oklahoma transfer Trevor Knight?
All those questions will begin to get answered on the opening weekend of the season.
Three things to watch to kill time before the season starts
1. NBA Playoffs
Assuming the playoffs go the distance, this could provide a distraction up until June 19. Game 7 of the NBA Finals is scheduled on this day, and it could be a star-studded event.
You could get the all-around talents of LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers against back-to-back MVP Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors — or superstar Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder.
But don’t count out the Toronto Raptors, who are tied 2-2 with James and the Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference Finals. If the Raptors make it to the Finals, expect to see Raptors ambassador and popular recording artist Drake at every game, which is always interesting.
Either way, it’s shaping up to be an entertaining next few weeks.
Want a change of pace from football while you wait for the season? Baseball may be a good option for you.
The MLB division races heat up (pun intended) throughout the summer as teams separate themselves for pennant runs. Maybe you’ll get so caught up that you forget football is even coming back?
3. TV series/movies
Premieres Friday, June 17
12:01 a.m. PT — “Orange is the New Black” — Netflix
It’s the fourth season of this original Netflix series based on the true events of a woman, who was originally supposed to be in prison for less than a year. It’s season four, so you can probably guess that it has been way longer than a year. If you time it right — looking at you binge watchers — this could last you through August.
Premieres Sunday, July 17
10 p.m. — “Ballers” — HBO
This series revolves around fictitious football players and agents, so it’s almost just like watching games, right? This definitely isn’t a family show, but it could keep you entertained until the real stuff starts in September.
Premieres Sunday, July 31
8 p.m. — “Sharknado: The 4th Awakens” – Syfy
There may be apologies in order for suggesting this, but hear me out.
If you have never heard of Sharknado, allow me to explain. Sharks caught in tornadoes attack the earth while brave citizens try to fight them off.
Sounds crazy, right? But in “Sharknado 3”, sharks decimated the White House and there was a shark battle in space (still trying to figure this one out. …)
Anyway, the acting may be suspect, and the plot is completely unrealistic — but by the time you comprehend the ridiculousness of what you just watched — it might be Sept. 1.
Miss you, college football. Hopefully, these 100 days go by quickly.