College Basketball: Week 14 SEC Power Rankings
SEC Power Rankings
In just one game in the SEC, so much changed. I am, of course, talking about the Florida Gators and Kentucky Wildcats game. The power rankings for this week may not be much different as a result, but they very much could be next week.
The Gators made a huge statement in the SEC by beating the Wildcats by the score of 69-52. Kentucky seemed to be Florida’s only real concern in the conference, but that was definitely was not the case when these two rivals met up.
What about Nerlens Noel? That was one of the most horrific sights to witness. The young man went down on a hustle play to try and stop Florida from scoring an easy basket, but came down wrong on his knee. The pain and screaming of Noel literally silenced the whole entire arena and we all can only hope for the best for the Wildcat.
Noel going down is very bad news for Kentucky. Not to mention, for Noel’s career, since he was supposed to be the No. 1 overall pick in the upcoming NBA draft.
With all of that aside, Florida is the only lock to make this year’s NCAA tournament, which means teams like Kentucky, Ole Miss, Alabama, Missouri and whoever else really needs to start winning some games. It is now or never. Well, not really since a team can get an auto bid by winning the conference tournament.
But really, the big dance is not too far away and there are going to be a lot of SEC teams on the outside looking in. With that said, let’s move along with the SEC power rankings for the week.
14. South Carolina Gamecocks (12-11, 2-8 SEC)
South Carolina has lost four games in a row and it has no shot to make the dance this year. Frank Martin will have to try again next year with his new team.
13. Mississippi State Bulldogs (7-15, 2-8 SEC)
How can a team with five fewer losses and the same amount of SEC wins be ranked higher than the Gamecocks? Well, that is because Mississippi State beat South Carolina earlier in the year. However, the Bulldogs have lost eight games in a row.
12. Auburn Tigers (9-14, 3-7 SEC)
Auburn got a pretty big win over Alabama, which is cool and all, but have you looked at the Tigers record? Yeah, not so good. At least they are trying to play the spoiler at this point by trying to keep other SEC teams out of the big dance.
11. Vanderbilt Commodores (9-13, 3-7 SEC)
Vanderbilt may have gotten a good win over Arkansas, but it is time to stick a fork in it for the season. At this point, the Commodores might not even make the NIT.
10. Tennessee Volunteers (12-10, 4-6 SEC)
If Tennessee wants to make the tournament then it has two options. Win pretty much the rest of the games it has left or win the conference tournament. Neither really sound that achievable, but that is what the Volunteers have set themselves up to do.
9. LSU Tigers (13-8, 4-6 SEC)
LSU looked like it might get back into the SEC race--at least for second place--with three straight victories, but the Tigers fell behind once again with a three-point loss to Alabama.
8. Texas A&M Aggies (14-9, 4-6 SEC)
Texas A&M has been in some really close ballgames. Other than the Florida game, the Aggies could really easily be undefeated in the SEC, but a loss is a loss even if it is very close.
7. Georgia Bulldogs (12-12, 6-5 SEC)
It is very possible for the Georgia Bulldogs to finish in second place in the SEC. That is how wide open it is. The Bulldogs are currently two games back of that spot, but they will have to upset some teams if they plan on getting in that position.
6. Arkansas Razorbacks (14-9, 5-5 SEC)
After playing so well against the Gators, it is very disappointing that Arkansas lost by 18 points against a struggling Vanderbilt team.
That loss was very devastating to the Razorbacks and I don’t think they can recover from it.
5. Ole Miss Rebels (18-5, 7-3 SEC)
Ole Miss may have started off conference play on fire, but after playing three of the best teams in the conference, it found out pretty quickly what kind of team it is.
The Rebels went down against Missouri, Kentucky and Florida in the last three out of four games. Hey, somewhere in there was a blowout win against Mississippi State, so at least there is that.
4. Missouri Tigers (17-6, 6-4 SEC)
After an impressive 98-79 point victory over Ole Miss, the Missouri Tigers are on the right side of the tournament bubble. However, this team has had too good of a season not to make the big dance, so expect it to start getting hot in SEC play.
3. Alabama Crimson Tide (16-8, 8-3 SEC)
Alabama could really use another big victory in SEC play, which is really hard to find this year, considering how bad the conference has been.
However, the Crimson Tide will have two more shots: one against Florida and one against Ole Miss.
2. Kentucky Wildcats (17-7, 8-3 SEC)
It is one thing getting blown out by your rival, but it is a whole different story when you lose your best player in that same game.
It was about time that the Gators beat the Wildcats, after five straight losses, but it is just too bad that Nerlens Noel went down.
It will be very interesting to see how Kentucky responds to Noel’s injury on the court.
1. Florida Gators (20-3, 10-1 SEC)
Welcome back, Florida. After a lopsided matchup against Arkansas, the Gators have won two straight in a row, including one game over the Kentucky Wildcats. Both of those wins were in blowout fashion, which is kind of Florida’s thing this year.
The SEC may be down, but this team is good enough to earn itself a No. 1 seed in the big dance. However, it will likely have to win the rest of its games, including the conference tournament to do so.
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