The 14 basketball entities of higher education of the SEC started the basketball season off with a bang and some busts in the first week of the season, proving once again that you can never, ever count on the SEC to not trip over itself when putting its pants on.
There were some highlights in week 1, some lowlights and a lot of teams taking care of business and handling the cupcakes they’d set on their desert tray in a fashion that did not embarrass themselves or the conference.
We’ve got a logjam at the top for our number 1 spot with Florida taking the top by virtue of not having lost in a neutral site game to a better opponent. Good on you Gators! Kentucky and A&M tied for second place, which may feel a bit reactionary on the part of the Cats ranking, but hey you’ve got to win the games. A&M had the most impressive win of the week, just taking out West Virginia in a neutral site affair and showing that Billy Kennedy has as nice a squad as we thought coming in. Kentucky for their part got beat by Kansas, because they’ve got five freshman, no outside shooting to speak of and a point guard that’s going to need some seasoning. But hey, it’s them against the world, just ask ‘em.
Sitting towards the top of the pecking order we have tie for fourth between Mizzou and Alabama. Bama has not lost yet and got back Colin Sexton who showed out very well in his first game. Get Braxton Key back healthy and look out! Mizzou for their part beat a bad Iowa State team, saw all world recruit Michael Porter JR get a bucket, a rebound and then never again. I’m guessing if the game against Utah hadn’t ended late, this ranking would be slightly different. Arkansas join both Bama and Mizzou and have looked quite potent against inferior competition.
If you were wondering where the rest of the SEC was ranked, it’s pretty much right here. In year’s past I’ve described this section of the conference as the gooey middle and this early in the season, that feels about right. We’ve got Ole Miss, Georgia, State, Auburn and Vandy all separated by 8 total points. All but Vandy have looked quite competent so far, with Vandy suffering a road loss to mid major top team beater Belmont. Nothing to get too upset about, but this early in the season and your ranking can shift like a blade of grass against a slight breeze.
South Carolina, congrats on your own area! SC lost a morning game in Puerto Rico to Illinois State on Thursday and they’ve been punished for it. This loss feels better to me than the SC loss, but hey, stop losing and you’ll move back up.
Finally, we’ve got UT and LSU sitting on the bottom as they were last week. Neither team has lost, neither team has had a close game, and both get chances to get signature wins against Big 10 foes this coming week, so a change at the bottom could be a foot!
|Team||Points||Ranking||Ranking Last Week||Change||Highest Pick||Lowest Pick|
|Kentucky||77||2nd (Tied)||1st||Down 1||1st||3rd|
|Texas A&M||77||2nd (Tied)||3rd||Up 1||1st||3rd|
|Alabama||59||4th (Tied)||5th||Up 1||4th||7th|
|Ole Miss||40||7th||12th||Up 5||6th||12th|
|Auburn||32||10th (Tied)||8th||Down 2||6th||12th|
|Vanderbilt||32||10th (Tied)||7th||Down 3||6th||12th|
|South Carolina||23||12th||11th||Down 1||9th||14th|
Points were distributed as follows: 1st = 14, 2nd = 13, 3rd = 12, 4th = 11, 5th = 10, 6th = 9, 7th = 8, 8th = 7, 9th = 6, 10th = 5, 11th = 4, 12th = 3, 13th = 2, and 14th = 1
Beat Memphis, even if they aren't what they used to be, and have Collin Sexton back on the floor. The top 1/3 or 1/2 of the conference is looking stronger than we've seen in a long, long time. (Dawg Sports)
Beat Memphis with a depleted line up, Sexton looked awesome in first game. (Garnet and Black Attack)
What’s it like when a good basketball team exists on a football only campus? We’re going to find out this season. (Rock M Nation)
Their Bucknell win will look more impressive as the season plays out. A Thanksgiving date with Oklahoma will be a chance for another solid non-conference win. (Dawg Sports)
Beating a mid major in a way that Vandy and SC could not gives Mike Anderson’s squad a headnod, let’s see how they fare on the road though…(Rock M Nation)
If Purifoy and Wiley get eligible, they shoot up the list. But there is still a solid amount of talent on the roster, so I'm probably dinging them too much. (Dawg Sports)
Auburn looks better than expected without Wiley and Purifoy. They're running, rebounding, and playing defense. The team is thin, but talented. (College and Magnolia)
Did you see Bruce Pearl going bananas in his locker room? You haven’t? Enjoy, it’s magnificent! (Rock M Nation)
A veteran squad that has a lot to like, seemingly few if any weaknesses, and may solidify itself in the top spot before too long. Adding Koulechov is an underrated pick up for their perimeter shooting. (Dawg Sports)
Their play should help keep everyone busy while their football team does whatever it is they’re doing. Seriously, it’s not football. (Rock M Nation)
I may be overrating them as a homer, but Yante Maten is right there among the best players anyone can put on the floor. This team really needs the backcourt to stay healthy and step up though, but if they do then Maten will flourish. (Dawg Sports)
Yante Maten is the best player in the conference. As the kids say, “don’t @ me.” (Rock M Nation)
For the first two games, Kentucky struggled against inferior opponents before seeming to pull it together in a close Kansas loss. This Kentucky team hasn't gelled yet and, in light of the rest of the conference's performance, I have to drop them. (College and Magnolia)
Lost a close one to Kansas, but the talent is all there. Likely the same flaws as recent Kentucky teams though in FT shooting, freshman mistakes, etc. It'll be late December before they face anyone else who can challenge them. (Dawg Sports)
Lost to Kansas, still the best. (Garnett and Black Attack)
I'm reserving judgment on LSU until they play Michigan this week but so far, Will Wade is looking like a good hire. (College and Magnolia)
LSU has a competent coach and I am telling you right now that that’s boring and bad for my schtick. (Rock M Nation)
They'll be better soon, but it won't be too soon. And their lack of depth and experience will be a problem come conference play. (Dawg Sports)
Quindarry Weatherspoon is not related to Clarence Weatherspoon, but I wish he was. Fun fact, Fleer couldn’t get Shaq in their set, so they made Clarence’s rookie card have Shaq in it as well. This has nothing to do with State, but whatever. (Rock M Nation)
Holman and Weatherspoon are an excellent 1-2 punch, with a need for role players to fill in around them to win more than they have so far under Howland (I know, low bar to clear there). (Dawg Sports)
A solid W over Iowa St is in the books, and this is with Porter Jr barely seeing the floor so far. (Dawg Sports)
So, you’re telling me a team without its top recruit, in its third game on the season, with nary a player ever having won a road game, would lose on the road to Utah, in Utah? Color me shocked! (Rock M Nation)
Missouri taking out Iowa State by double-digits is a wakeup call to the rest of the conference. It was my favorite SEC win of the week. (College and Magnolia)
Hey, it could be worse than a solid NIT caliber team, right LSU? (Dawg Sports)
The march to .500 continues on! (Rock M Nation)
Hard to say much about this team, after all they lost, until they face Temple to end the month. (Dawg Sports)
Lost to a good mid-major, Chris Silva in foul trouble, shocker. (Garnet and Black Attack)
Just think, this loss to Illinois State is going to potentially get them into the tourney, and doesn’t that make you feel good about yourselves Gamecock fans? (Rock M Nation)
JOHN GRUDEN!!!!!!! Seriously, that’s all they care about right now. (Rock M Nation)
Purdue the day before Thanksgiving is their chance to prove me wrong for ranking them at the bottom. But I just don't see Rick Barnes lasting much longer. (Dawg Sports)
Looked really good in win over West VA. (Garnet and Black Attack)
Between them and Mizzou, the ex Big 12ers are going to put a serious hurt on the current conference. That’s what happens when you don’t invite us to play ever again. (Rock M Nation)
The West Virginia win is extremely impressive, and the ability for a March run is here if Billy Kennedy doesn't mess it up. Okie St on Monday could be a good one. (Dawg Sports)
Worst loss of the week goes to Vandy dropping one to cross-town rival Belmont. Belmont has played good ball in past years but if Vandy is really an NCAA tournament contender, Belmont shouldn't have been able to hang with them. I probably have them ranked lower than they deserve but based on the SEC's hot start, they need to work their way back up! (College and Magnolia)
They lost the battle for Nashville, the show Nashville is being canceled, football season is still happening…can anything go right for the poor Commodores?! (Rock M Nation)
Belmont isn't bad, but it's hard to rank the second best team in Nashville higher than this. (Dawg Sports)
That will do it for week 1! We hope you enjoyed the games and are ready for some delights this week. We’ll be back next Friday after Thanksgiving to help with your digestion and appetite for SEC Hoops.