July 22, 2024

Mid-February NCAA Tournament scenarios for SEC teams

Several SEC teams strengthened their NCAA Tournament resumes, while others are barely hanging on in ESPN’s Joe Lunardi’s bracketology.

LEXINGTON, KY - FEBRUARY 14, 2017 - Tipoff during the game between the Kentucky Wildcats and the Tennessee Volunteers at Rupp Arena in Lexington, KY. Photo By Craig Bisacre, courtesy of Tennessee Athletics.

Week of Feb. 11-Feb. 17


Florida- Is there a hotter team in the country right now than Florida? The Gators have won seven straight and haven’t lost since Jan. 21 against Vanderbilt. This week, Florida picked up a home win against Texas A&M and a road win at Auburn to bring their season mark to 21-5 (11-2 SEC). The Gators travel to Mississippi State on Saturday before a showdown with South Carolina next week in Gainesville.

ESPN’s Joe Lunardi currently has the Gators as a No. 3 seed in his bracketology.

Kentucky- After losing three of four games at the end of January and early February, the Wildcats have bounced back nicely to win their last three. Kentucky (21-5, 11-2 SEC) gritted out a defensive win against a tough Alabama squad in Tuscaloosa on Saturday. The Wildcats followed that up with a bit of revenge against Tennessee by pummeling the Vols’ at home by 25. Kentucky will be on the road for their next two contests against Georgia and Missouri.

Joe Lunardi has Kentucky as a No. 3 seed alongside Florida.

South Carolina- Compared to Florida and Kentucky, it hasn’t been near as good of a week for the Gamecocks. South Carolina (19-6, 10-3 SEC) barely held on to a win against Mississippi State on Saturday, but followed that up with a home loss against Arkansas — a game which the Gamecocks led most of the way through. South Carolina has two tough road contests against Vanderbilt and Florida this week and needs to split them to avoid being in danger of falling down to a double-digit seed.

ESPN’s Lunardi dropped them to a No. 7 seed in his latest bracketology.

On the Bubble

Arkansas- After a loss to SEC bottom-dweller Missouri, things were looking rough for the Razorbacks en route to the wrong side of the tournament bubble. Things changed when Arkansas (19-7, 8-5 SEC) came from behind to nab a big win at South Carolina. That win gave the Razorbacks their third RPI top-50 win of the season. Things get better for Arkansas: The Razorbacks face two very winnable home games against Ole Miss and Texas A&M this week.

Joe Lunardi currently has Arkansas in his Last Four Byes section as a No. 11 seed.

Tennessee- Oh, the sorrowing life of a young, inexperienced team. After riding high and winning five of six games, the Vols have now lost three out of their last four. Tennessee (14-12, 6-7 SEC) dropped a crucial home game to Georgia on Saturday after blowing a late lead. While the loss wasn’t totally crippling, it leaves even less room for error for the Vols. They followed that up with a humbling trip to Lexington, where Kentucky got its revenge and stomped Tennessee. The Vols will face Missouri at home on Saturday before hosting in-state rival Vanderbilt next week.

Joe Lunardi currently has them as his second team out of the field.

Edited by Nathan Odom

Featured image by Craig Bisacre, courtesy of Tennessee Athletics.