1. Florida – What this team did to Kentucky on Saturday night was a statement, to say the least. For most of this season, it’s looked like Kentucky then everyone else in the SEC. But Michael White’s team had other ideas.
2. Kentucky – The intriguing thing about John Calipari’s teams each year is how he manages to get all that talent to gel into one unit. So far this year, he hasn’t quite been able to do that. De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk are probably the best guard tandem in college basketball, but right now the Wildcats look like an all-star team in the sense the chemistry is not there, at least not yet.
3. South Carolina – Frank Martin and the Gamecocks are going to end the program’s NCAA Tournament drought this season in all likelihood, and they’re technically in first place in the SEC at 9-1 with a win over Florida and the lone loss to Kentucky. But I still give the edge to Florida and UK over them right now based on the eye test.
4. Tennessee – There isn’t a ton of talent on this roster currently, but Rick Barnes has this team playing hard and as a cohesive unit right now. The Vols had a setback over the weekend at Mississippi State, but they’re one of the best teams in this league when things are clicking.
5. Arkansas – Razorbacks lost to a 5-16 Missouri team this weekend. No word yet on if they are allowed to continue their season or not.
6. Alabama – One of the perennial bubble teams in the SEC, the Tide struggles to score the basketball. Avery Johnson’s got some talent on the way, but for now this team is likely NIT bound, and a stretch against South Carolina and Kentucky back-to-back doesn’t make things much easier.
7. Ole Miss – Andy Kennedy has got to be wondering where this guard play has been. Deandre Burnett and Cullen Neal finally looked like the tandem he thought he was getting in the win over Vanderbilt on Saturday. The Rebels notched another RPI Top 50 win but are still looking for that one signature victory.
8. Auburn – This team has survived some injuries and a sluggish start to SEC play and got a big win over Alabama on Saturday. Bruce Pearl quietly has the Tigers at 15-8 with some work to do but a puncher’s chance at getting in the NCAA Tournament.
9. Georgia – This team just can’t seem to put a complete game together. The Dawgs took Kentucky to overtime on Tuesday then faded down the stretch at South Carolina this weekend. If J.J. Frazier and Yante Maten don’t put up huge offensive numbers, Georgia struggles to find offense elsewhere.
10 . Mississippi State – It’s been an up-and-down year for Ben Howland’s young team. They’ve showed promise at times and looked like a bunch of freshmen at others. The win over Tennessee on Saturday made this last month of the season much more interesting for the Bulldogs. But regardless, the future is really bright with this program.
11. Texas A&M – There is talent on this roster, but the pieces haven’t fit together so far. Injuries haven’t helped either, and it’s all amounted to a frustrating year for the Aggies.
12. Vanderbilt – The ‘Dores have played a tough schedule and have a pretty young team overall with just two seniors on the roster. Bryce Drew is in his first year and will soon have this program competing atop the SEC again.
13. Missouri – The Tigers beat Arkansas for their first SEC win in a pretty long time. Kim Anderson and his team have gone through some challenging times and deserve to enjoy their perseverance coming to fruition on the court, at least for a day.
14. LSU – Is Johnny Jones still employed as head coach? Wow.