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SEC Basketball Power Rankings: 6th Edition

SEC Basketball Power Rankings: 6th Edition

Power Rankings

  1. No.8 Auburn: 11-0 (-)
  2. No.19 Kentucky: 8-3 (-)
  3. Tennessee: 8-3 (-)
  4. Arkansas: 10-1 (+1)
  5. Ole Miss: 8-3 (+2)
  6. Florida: 7-4 (-)
  7. LSU: 7-4 (-3)
  8. Mississippi State: 8-3 (-)
  9. Georgia: 7-3 (-)
  10. South Carolina: 8-4 (+3)
  11. Missouri: 7-4 (+1)
  12. Alabama: 6-5 (-2)
  13. Texas A&M: 5-5 (+1)
  14. Vanderbilt: 7-4 (-3)

Top Tier (1-3)

It’s been a rough two weeks for the SEC, particularly among the best teams. The top tier shrinks to just three teams now and even that may be a stretch. The top tier from last edition went just 6-6 since the last power rankings. Minus Auburn, they went an atrocious 3-6.

Auburn maintains it’s dominance, still the only remaining undefeated team in the league. While they have played a soft schedule, they have taken care of business in every game which is more than the rest of the league can say.

SEC Basketball Power Rankings: 6th Edition
Tennessee gave up 70 points on defense for the first time this season. (Photo by cincinnati.com).

Kentucky had a rough week last week with a bad loss to Utah followed by a loss to Ohio State in a game the Buckeyes controlled for most of the game. They’ll face fellow rival Louisville at home on Saturday and try to avoid a three-game losing streak. Should they lose it will be the second time Calipari has lost three in a row at Kentucky.

Tennessee also had a rough two weeks. They lost a close one to in-state rival Memphis at home and followed it with a loss on the road to Cincinnati. Cincinnati at 7-5 is looking like a bad loss for Tennessee at this point in the season and the pair of losses has them bumped from the rankings.

Upper Middle Tier: (4-7)

Arkansas continues to cruise through their non conference as they won their two games over the two-week stretch. Ole Miss did likewise with two wins over lowly Mid Tennessee State and Southeastern Louisiana.

Florida continues to struggle to hit their stride as the season goes on. The win against Providence was one they needed to have but the loss to Utah State hurts a little. In what was virtually a home game the Gators lost a close contest.

LSU slipped from the top tier after a bad 11 point loss to East Tennessee State at home. They followed that up with a close loss to Southern California. The Tigers have yet to earn any eye-opening wins and have failed to win some of the games they should have.

Their last chance to earn a win that looks good on the resume before conference play surprisingly will come at home against Liberty. The Flames are undefeated and have a good chance of showing up in Baton Rouge as a ranked team.

Lower Middle Tier: (8-12)

Mississippi State continues to sit in the middle of the pack. They had a chance to really move up a few spots with most of the conference slipping but the 6 point loss to New Mexico State at home Sunday night squashed any chance of that.

SEC Basketball Power Rankings: 6th Edition
South Carolina scored 70 points on Virginia, the most the Cavaliers have given up all season. (Photo by washingtontimes.com).

Georgia also sat still but did hang a nice win on SMU in double overtime in their last game. Georgia’s worse loss is the loss to Arizona State on the road which isn’t cause for much concern. The win over SMU will look nice on their resume as they try to put themselves in position for the NCAA closing out nonconference play.

South Carolina had a great two games and made the biggest jump. They dominated their rivals Clemson on the road and then beat No.9 Virginia on the road by 11 points. It is by far the biggest win for the Gamecocks who are now making some noise going into conference play.

Closing out the middle tier is Missouri. They put together a 2-0 stretch that included a big win for the program over rivals Illinois in St. Louis. Illinois was recently coming off a top 10 upset over Michigan.

Alabama just fell short to pulling off a big upset at a ranked Penn State team. They followed it with two wins and are still trying to find a groove this season. They’ll have a big opportunity to find that groove against Richmond next Sunday.

Bottom Tier: (13-14)

Finally, we have the bottom feeders. Texas A&M pulled themselves up from the bottom spot in the conference with an impressive win against Oregon State. Oregon State came into College Station at 9-1 and got absolutely dominated by the Aggies all game.

Vanderbilt fell to undefeated Liberty as well as a bad Loyola Chicago team. They finished the week with a win against UNC Wilmington but the two losses did their damage.

Outlook

SEC Basketball Power Rankings: 6th Edition
Kentucky will likely drop out of the top 10 for the first time since week 11 of last season. (Photo by kentucky.com).

The conference took a hit in the last two weeks. Since the last release of the power rankings the SEC is 23-12 with ranked teams going 5-4. The poor showing from the top of the league has resulted in just two ranked teams to close out December.

With only a little of the non conference left to go there isn’t much time for the conference to improve it’s resume. What looked like a potential eight or nine bid league suddenly looks like a five bid league. Teams like Florida and LSU have been very underwhelming.

There have been some pleasant highlights in the league. Auburn’s undefeated season and Arkansas’s one loss season are both eye openers. But even that has it’s concerns as neither team has faced any real challenges to this point in the season.

 

 

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