Welcome folks, to theBRKDWN’s SEC Hoops Power Rankings! Every Monday, myself and my good pal — and fellow SEC basketball fanatic — Lincoln Ottersbach, (@NotAnOtterBox on Twitter) will be releasing our SEC Power Rankings.
Another week of conference play has come and gone! It appears we finally have some true contenders separating themselves from the rest of the field. So without further adieu, let’s get into the rankings!
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14. Vanderbilt Commodores (4-6, 0-4 SEC) (LW: 12)
Last Week: L @ #6 Tennessee 61-81
This Week: vs. Texas A&M (Jan. 20), vs. Arkansas (Jan. 23)
Vandy had a tough test this week with two scheduled games against Tennessee. Fortunately for them, they only had to lose once this week instead of twice due to the first matchup being postponed. They have a much better opportunity to get their first conference win this week, but they’ll need to take advantage with not many left on the schedule.
13. Georgia Bulldogs (8-4, 1-4 SEC) (LW: 14)
Last Week: L vs. Auburn 77-95, W @ Ole Miss 78-74
This Week: vs. Kentucky (Jan. 20), vs. Florida (Jan. 23)
Georgia finally joined the winners column this week with a hard-fought dub on the road at Ole Miss. The Bulldogs have two winnable games upcoming with two inconsistent teams coming to Stegeman Coliseum. I don’t expect a sweep by any means, but if they can steal one, they’ll continue to rise next week.
12. Ole Miss Rebels (6-6, 1-4 SEC) (LW: 9)
Last Week: L @ Florida 63-72, L vs. Georgia 74-78
This Week: @ Mississippi State (Jan. 19), vs. Texas A&M (Jan. 23)
Kermit Davis’ squad really struggled this week, losing to a reeling Florida team and a winless Georgia team. Devontae Shuler is going to have to get some help if they want to pull off an upset in StarkVegas this week, but A&M is certainly a winnable matchup.
11. Texas A&M Aggies (7-5, 2-4 SEC) (LW: 11)
Last Week: W @ Mississippi State 56-55, L vs. #17 Missouri 68-52
This Week: @ Vanderbilt (Jan. 20), @ Ole Miss (Jan. 23)
A&M pulled off the shocker of last week, overcoming a 13-point second half deficit to upset Mississippi State on the road. They couldn’t go two for two on the upsets, but Buzz Williams’ squad showed some signs of life this week. They’ll get two games against fellow bottom-dwellers this week, so we’ll see if they can move back up the rankings next week.
10. Auburn Tigers (8-6, 2-4 SEC) (LW: 13)
Last Week: W @ Georgia 95-77, W vs. Kentucky 66-59
This Week: @ Arkansas (Jan. 20), @ South Carolina (Jan. 23)
Auburn finally got off the schneid last week thanks to the NCAA finally ruling Sharife Cooper eligible to play. Cooper is the point guard Bruce Pearl’s young squad has been missing and got off to a hot start, averaging 21.7pts/9.7asts/4.0rebs in his first three games. Auburn looks like a new team with Cooper at the helm, but we’ll see if they can continue rising this week.
9. South Carolina Gamecocks (6-4, 1-2 SEC) (LW: 10)
Last Week: L @ LSU 80-85
This Week: @ #19 Missouri (Jan. 19), vs. Auburn (Jan. 23)
South Carolina failed to pull off the upset on the road against LSU, allowing an eight-point lead to disappear over the final 7:47. A.J. Lawson is an All-SEC caliber player, but if they continue to get consistent output from Keyshawn Bryant, and stay on the court, Frank Martin’s squad will continue to rise. They’ll have two tough tests this week, but we’ll see if they can pull out any surprise upsets.
8. Arkansas Razorbacks (10-4, 2-4 SEC) (LW: 5)
Last Week: L @ LSU 76-92, L @ Alabama 59-90
This Week: vs. Auburn (Jan. 20), @ Vanderbilt (Jan. 23)
Arkansas got run off the court in the first half of each of their games this week, being outscored 50-93 by LSU and Alabama. The record may look good on paper, but the Razorbacks haven’t beaten any of the contenders they’ve played, and really only competed with Tennessee. They’ll need to win a real game in order to join the contender conversation, but for now, Musselman’s squad looks very much like pretenders.
7. Florida Gators (6-4, 3-3 SEC) (LW: 6)
Last Week: W vs. Ole Miss 72-63, L @ Mississippi State 72-69
This Week: vs. #6 Tennessee (Jan. 19), @ Georgia (Jan. 23)
Florida split against the Mississippi schools last week, even with more consistent play out of Colin Castleton. The harsh truth is Florida just isn’t a contender in the league without Keyontae Johnson. They’ll be able to pull off some upsets because they are still a talented team and Mike White is a good coach, but I think they’re out of the contender conversation for the rest of the season.
6. Kentucky Wildcats (4-8, 3-2 SEC) (LW: 4)
Last Week: L vs. Alabama 65-85, L @ Auburn 59-66
This Week: @ Georgia (Jan. 20), vs. LSU (Jan. 23)
Kentucky suffered a backslide this week, dropping games to both schools from Alabama. There appears to be no consistency with this team on the offensive end. John Calipari continuing to give big minutes to Brandon Boston Jr. seems to be hurting more than helping. They should be able to take the game at Georgia, but they’ll need to find some scoring if they want to hang with LSU.
5. Mississippi State Bulldogs (9-5, 4-2 SEC) (LW: 7)
Last Week: L vs. Texas A&M 55-56, W vs. Florida 72-69
This Week: vs. Ole Miss (Jan. 19), @ #18 Alabama (Jan. 23)
Mississippi State came out of last week with a head-scratching split. The win against Florida was a solid one, but losing at home to A&M is a loss the Bulldogs can’t have if they want to join the list of contenders. The duo of Iverson Molinar and D.J. Stewart continues to lead the way for State, and they’ll each need to have big games if they want to upset Alabama this week.
4. #19 Missouri Tigers (8-2) (LW: 8)
Last Week: W @ Texas A&M 68-52
This Week: vs. South Carolina (Jan. 19), @ #6 Tennessee (Jan. 23)
It appears Mizzou has their COVID issues under control now, but came out to a slow start against A&M in the first half after the 11-day layoff. They’ll have another tune-up game against a scrappy South Carolina team before the rematch with Tennessee in Knoxville. We’ll see if the dominant Mizzou team from the non-conference schedule shows up, or if it’ll continue to be the inconsistent squad we’ve seen in conference play.
3. LSU Tigers (10-2, 5-1 SEC) (LW: 3)
Last Week: W vs. Arkansas 92-76, W vs. South Carolina 85-80
This Week: vs. #18 Alabama (Jan. 19), @ Kentucky (Jan. 23)
LSU showed some signs of improvement on the defensive end last week, but it will never be the strength of this team. They’re a top-10 offensive team in the country behind the big four of Cameron Thomas (22.1ppg), Trendon Watford (18.7ppg), Javonte Smart (15.2ppg) and Darius Days (13.7ppg). If those four can remain in the top-20 of scoring in the SEC, and get stops defensively when they need it most, they’ll be a tough out for anyone going forward.
2. #6 Tennessee Volunteers (10-1, 4-1 SEC) (LW: 2)
Last Week: W vs. Vanderbilt 81-61
This Week: @ Florida (Jan. 19), vs. #19 Missouri (Jan. 23)
It’s hard to move Tennessee up based on one dominant victory against Vandy. It’s a true team effort by Rick Barnes’ squad night-in and night-out, with no one truly standing out as the star. The Vols are probably the best team in the SEC in the long run, but will need Bama to slip up in order to overtake the #1 spot.
1. #18 Alabama Crimson Tide (11-3, 6-0 SEC) (LW: 1)
Last Week: W @ Kentucky 85-65, W vs. Arkansas 90-59
This Week: @ LSU (Jan. 19), vs. Mississippi State (Jan. 23)
Welcome, Alabama fans! Now that football is over, I’m sure it’s a pleasant surprise to find your team atop the SEC standings. The injury bug found its way to Tuscaloosa last week, but they avoided any slip-ups against two solid squads last week. They’ll need all hands on deck when they travel to the PMAC against LSU, but they haven’t shown any signs of weakness thus far.
That will complete the rankings for this week, check back with us next Monday to see who rises and falls after another week of action! Follow us on Twitter @brkdwn_sports for more great sports and gambling content!