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Monday, May 23, 2022
<p>Coach Mike White's team helped its postseason prospects with a win over Auburn at the O'Connell Center Saturday night. </p>

Coach Mike White's team helped its postseason prospects with a win over Auburn at the O'Connell Center Saturday night. 

The current state of the SEC’s race for the top-four seeds in the conference tournament, which runs from March 7 to 11, is wide open.

The top-four teams receive a double bye for the opening two rounds of the tournament, creating an easier path to the championship game, as well as extra time to rest.

The league, as a whole, has improved from a year ago, when it featured five teams in the NCAA Tournament. While it’s not particularly top-heavy — there are just two ranked SEC teams — it’s highly competitive from top to bottom.

The fact that there are only two games left for each team before the SEC Tournament begins and 11 out of 14 teams can still clinch a top-four seed illustrates this season’s parity.

Only the ACC (10) has more than the SEC’s eight projected tournament teams, according to ESPN bracketologist Joe Lunardi.

Florida, part of a four-way tie for third place in the SEC standings, plays host to one of those teams — Kentucky, which the Gators defeated 66-64 on Jan. 20 — to close out the regular season on March 3. On Tuesday, UF will take on Alabama in Tuscaloosa, another team in contention. The Crimson Tide beat the Gators 68-50 on Feb. 3.

Going by today’s SEC standings, Florida’s remaining schedule is the toughest of any team in position to earn a top four seed, but the Gators own six head-to-head tiebreakers, more than any of the top 11 SEC teams.

 

Teams in contention for top-four seed

1 – *Auburn (24-5, 12-4 SEC) | Remaining schedule: At Arkansas, South Carolina

2 – Tennessee (21-7, 11-5 SEC) | Remaining schedule: At Mississippi State, Georgia

T3 – Mississippi State (21-8, 9-7 SEC) | Remaining schedule: Tennessee, at LSU

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T3 – Kentucky (20-9, 9-7 SEC) | Remaining schedule: Ole Miss, at Florida

T3 – Arkansas (20-9, 9-7 SEC) | Remaining schedule: Auburn, at Missouri

T3 – Florida (18-11, 9-7 SEC) | Remaining schedule: At Alabama, Kentucky

T7 – Missouri (17-12, 8-8 SEC) | Remaining schedule: At Vanderbilt, Arkansas

T7 – Alabama (17-12, 8-8 SEC) | Remaining schedule: Florida, at Texas A&M

T9 – Texas A&M (18-11, 7-9 SEC) | Remaining schedule: At Georgia, Alabama

T9 – Georgia (16-12, 7-9 SEC) | Remaining schedule: Texas A&M, at Tennessee

T9 – LSU (16-12, 7-9 SEC) | Remaining schedule: At South Carolina, Mississippi State

*Clinched top-four seed

Current head-to-head tiebreakers

  • Tennessee owns the season series against: Kentucky, Florida, Texas A&M, LSU

  • Mississippi State owns the season series against: Arkansas, Texas A&M, Georgia

  • Kentucky owns the season series against: Mississippi State, Georgia, LSU

  • Arkansas owns the season series against: Tennessee, Missouri, Alabama, Georgia

  • Florida owns the season series against: Auburn, Mississippi State, Arkansas, Missouri, Texas A&M, LSU

  • Missouri owns the season series against: Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia

  • Alabama owns the season series against: Tennessee, Texas A&M, LSU

  • Texas A&M owns the season series against: Auburn

  • Georgia owns the season series against: Florida, Alabama, LSU

  • LSU owns the season series against: Arkansas, Missouri, Texas A&M

Follow Andrew Huang on Twitter @AndrewJHuang and contact him at ahuang@alligator.org.

Coach Mike White's team helped its postseason prospects with a win over Auburn at the O'Connell Center Saturday night. 

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