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SEC Basketball Power Rankings: 8th Edition

SEC Basketball Power Rankings: 8th Edition

Power Rankings

  1. No.15 Kentucky: 15-4 (5-1) +1
  2. LSU: 15-4 (6-0) +1
  3. No.16 Auburn: 17-2 (4-2) -2
  4. Arkansas: 15-4 (3-3)
  5. Florida: 12-7 (4-2) +2
  6. Tennessee: 12-7 (4-2)
  7. Alabama: 12-7 (4-2) +3
  8. Mississippi State: 12-7 (3-3) +4
  9. Georgia: 11-8 (1-5) -4
  10. South Carolina: 11-8 (3-3) +3
  11. Texas A&M: 9-9 (3-3) -2
  12. Ole Miss: 10-9 (1-5) -1
  13. Missouri: 9-10 (1-5) -5
  14. Vanderbilt: 8-11 (0-6)

Top Tier (1-4)

Two weeks later and the same four teams find themselves in the top tier of the SEC. All four teams look to be safely in the NCAA Tournament at present moment. A couple teams have tripped a little getting deeper into conference play but have stayed consistent.

Kentucky is the new top team after an outstanding two weeks. The Wildcats were stunned on the road in Columbia, South Carolina but recuperated nicely in the following three games. Kentucky had nice wins against Arkansas and Georgia before the thriller in overtime against No.18 Texas Tech in the Big 12/SEC Challenge.

SEC Basketball Power Rankings: 8th Edition
LSU is the hottest team in the SEC on an eight game winning streak. (Photo by si.com).

The Wildcats overthrew the Auburn Tigers who have struggled a little in conference play. Road games against Alabama and Florida went about as poorly as possible as they lost both by 19 points or more. Auburn played much better basketball at home against South Carolina and Iowa State.

LSU continues to cruise through their schedule, albeit in closely contested games. The Tigers have now won each of their last six games by four points or less. Wins are wins though and the Tigers find themselves alone atop the SEC in the standings.

Arkansas performed well with tough losses to Kentucky followed by Mississippi State on the road. They made their two wins look easy in games against Vanderbilt and TCU.

Middle Tier (5-8)

The middle tier consists of four teams that appear to be on the bubble for the NCAA Tournament. All have played well to begin conference play. Florida had big wins against Ole Miss and Auburn before a heartbreaking loss to LSU and a hard fought loss to the number one team Baylor.

Tennessee has some work to do but have kept themselves in the bubble conversation. Wins against Ole Miss and Vanderbilt won’t do much for the resume. The Volunteers will have big opportunities on the road against Mississippi State and Alabama before taking on Kentucky at home.

The Crimson Tide have started playing like many experts thought they would before the season began. They are one of two teams with a perfect 4-0 mark since the last power rankings. Alabama most notably blew out Auburn at home with a big 83-64 win over their rivals.

Mississippi State sits outside of the bubble at the moment but are within striking distance. They were a buzzer shot at Oklahoma away from being a perfect 4-0 with Alabama. Still, they defended their court well and boosted themselves in the SEC standings.

Bottom Tier (9-14)

SEC Basketball Power Rankings: 8th Edition
Georgia has now lost five of their last six. (Photo by dawgnation.com).

The bottom tier has started to solidify itself. Georgia had a horrendous two weeks with their lone win coming against Tennessee. The Bulldogs have greatly hurt their bubble chances with the latest loss at home to Ole Miss.

South Carolina took care of business against the lesser opponents in Texas A&M and Vanderbilt. The huge 81-78 win against then No.10 Kentucky pushed the Gamecocks up three spots this week.

Texas A&M fell victim to one of LSU’s gritty wins in overtime. The lone win since the last power rankings was a close two point win against Missouri. The Aggies have a tough road ahead of them with back to back road games against Tennessee and Georgia.

Ole Miss finally got their first SEC win of the year in a 10 point victory at Georgia. They too lost a close one to LSU. The Rebels have were blown out on the road at Florida and Tennessee. Ole Miss will get Auburn at home this week who they’ve had a lot of recent success against.

Missouri dropped big time in the power rankings after failing to win a game. The Tigers were blown out on the road in three games and lost a close one at home against Texas A&M.

Vanderbilt once again is amidst a fruitless search for an SEC win this season. The Commodores failed to win a conference game last season and had hoped this year might be different. Vanderbilt has not been close since a four point loss to Auburn, as they have lost the last five by an average of 20.2 points.

Outlook

The SEC currently appears to have four teams comfortably in the tournament. Kentucky is the team in position to have the highest seed come March. LSU continues to find ways to win the close ones and are the lone undefeated team in the conference.

The bubble continues to grow for teams fighting to be the fifth or sixth SEC team to get in the tournament. Alabama and Mississippi State have made charges in conference play and are proving to be teams to be reckoned with.

Georgia’s window is shrinking fast with the latest loss to Ole Miss. The 1-5 start in conference play has zapped the momentum from the Bulldogs after a big win against Memphis. South Carolina is in a similar position as Georgia but have positive momentum behind them. They have a big opportunity ahead of them on the road against Arkansas Wednesday night.

 

 

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