The Dagger will be previewing this week's marquee conference tournaments. Here's our look at the SEC:
Southeastern Conference Tournament
Dates: March 12-16
Site: Atlanta (Georgia Dome)
Top four seeds: 1. Florida 2. Kentucky 3. Georgia 4. Tennessee
Draw: Click here
Best draw: Fifth-seeded Arkansas should get by either Auburn or South Carolina and then faces fellow bubble team Tennessee for a chance to get to the semifinals likely against Florida. If the Razorbacks put that together and then play against the Gators, it should be enough to get them in the tournament.
Worst draw: Missouri must start against a Texas A&M team it beat by one point last week in order to get to a game against a Florida team that made history by going undefeated in the SEC regular season. Win those games and the Tigers might have played themselves back into serious contention for an at large berth. Bottom line for the Tigers is they have to win the whole thing like Ole Miss did last season.
Three players to watch:
• Scottie Wilbekin, G, Florida — He stirs the drink so to speak for the Gators scoring 13 points a game and helping get the ball to teammates like Patric Young in the post or Casey Prather and Michael Frazier on the perimeter.
• Jabari Brown, G, Missouri — The leading scorer in the conference will have to be at the top of his game to lead the Tigers on a run. He averaged 19.7 points per game in the regular season.
• Julius Randle, F, Kentucky — He had a double-double in a 19-point loss to Florida to end the regular season. He can be dominant but really needs his fellow freshmen to show up.
Bubble implications: Arkansas, Missouri and Tennessee are all on the bubble, but Missouri has the most to prove and needs a deep run here after losing three of its final five. None of these teams are locked in. They certainly can’t afford to play poorly this week.
Projected champ: The Gators have a lot of experience fueled by a core group of seniors. They are the best defensive team, the best shooting team and the second best team at defensive rebounding. The program has been to three straight Elite Eights and is coached by a man who has won two national championships. What’s not to like about the Gators?
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