TV Schedule: Tuesday, Jan. 12, 7:00 p.m. ET (SEC Network)
Arena: Reed Arena, College Station, Texas
After a disappointing loss to the Tennessee Volunteers, the Florida Gators bounced back with a massive win over Ben Simmons and the LSU Tigers, keeping their 2016 NCAA tournament hopes alive. The Gators could take yet another massive step on Tuesday night, as they travel to College Station, Texas, to face off with the No. 15 ranked Texas A&M Aggies.
Texas A&M is in the midst of a six-game winning streak, but they won their last two games by a combined five points. The good news is that both were on the road and the Aggies won; the bad news is that both games were to teams expected to finish near the bottom of the SEC, the Mississippi State Bulldogs and Tennessee. If Texas A&M is to compete for an SEC title like they look capable of doing, the Bulldogs must continue to avoid losing to bottom tier SEC teams.
That being said, the Gators are not a bottom tier SEC team. Michael White may be in just his first year at Florida, but the talent on this roster is undeniable. If you take away the recent loss to Tennessee, Florida’s losses have all come to expected NCAA tournament teams. Florida, which entered this season with next to no expectations, could easily end up winning the SEC.
This will be a tough matchup between two defensive minded teams that should both make the 2016 NCAA tournament. Although the Aggies boast the better offense, their offensive struggles in their last two games should continue against the Gators’ exceptional defense. However, Texas A&M has proven in their last two games that they can win close victories, so I’m giving this one to the Aggies in College Station.
Prediction: Texas A&M 66, Florida 63