While we've been obsessing over the end of football season, there has been basketball going on. That may come as a shock to those of you who aren't Kentucky or Vanderbilt fans, but don't worry. Here's a compilation of some of the best wins in the conference over the last two weeks. Rankings reflect the current AP poll.
The SEC picked up a win over the ACC as Auburn edged out Virginia 68-67. DeWayne Reed led the AU attack with 18 points and seven assists, while Lucas Hargrove came within a Tiger's whisker of a double-double with 13 points and nine rebounds. Brandon Knox was the surprise contributor with 11 points and six boards off the bench for Auburn, and his tip in of a missed Reed layup with 1.4 seconds to go was the winning bucket. The Tigers are 5-4 on the season.
No. 4 Kentucky picked up a big one with a long overdue win against No. 11 North Carolina 68-66. John Wall, a Tar Heel fan while growing up in Raleigh who UNC never offered a scholarship to, scored 16 points including the decisive free throws despite battling cramps. Patrick Patterson had the best overall night as he had 19 points and seven rebounds. Wall also led the team with seven assists. UK is now a perfect 8-0 on the season.
A.J. Ogilvy had a great night with 25 points and six rebounds as Vanderbilt knocked off Missouri 89-83. Jeffery Taylor had a double-double for the Commodores with 18 points and 11 boards, while Andre Walker led everyone with 12 rebounds. The Tigers made a furious comeback in the second half, but Vandy was able to hold them off thanks in part to a 45-24 rebounding edge. VU is 6-1 on the season and is ranked No. 24 in the Coaches' Poll.
Mark Fox and Georgia picked up a win over an occasional tournament team when the Bulldogs took care of Saint Louis 64-56. Only five UGA men scored in the game, but all reached double digits. Dustin Ware led all scorers with 17 on the night, while Travis Leslie led all rebounders with nine. Fox's crew led comfortably for most of the game, but SLU made a strong comeback late in the second half. Faced with adversity, the Bulldogs held off the Billikens to make the final score look good again. Georgia is 4-3 on the season.
South Carolina also picked up a win over a program with regular tournament appearances by shutting down Western Kentucky 74-56. Five Gamecocks made it into double figures, led by Devan Downey with 15. Two of them, Ramon Galloway and Evaldas Baniulis, had 11 each off the bench to make up all 22 points of reserve scoring. South Carolina had a 21-4 run in the first half while WKU answered with an 11-5 run in the second half, but the Hilltoppers couldn't get closer than eight the rest of the way. South Carolina is 6-2 on the season.
It was a shocker in Orlando as Anthony Grant's Alabama squad knocked off then-No. 15 Michigan 68-66. JaMychal Green was the star of the night for the Tide as he scored 20 points, put in the go-ahead basket with five seconds to go, and swatted away UM's layup attempt as time ran out. Mikhail Torrance had 11 points and eight assists, while Chavez Davis chipped in 12 points off the bench. Bama is 6-2 on the season.
Mississippi State stuck it to tournament regular Old Dominion by cruising to a 69-55 win. Dee Bost had a boffo shooting night, hitting six threes on the way to scoring 25 points. Jarvis Varnado had 15 points, six rebounds, and five blocks, but he only played nine first half minutes thanks to dislocating his pinkie. He would play 10 minutes in the second half and 21 in MSU's next game. It was not a very giving night as the two teams combined for just 26 total assists. Mississippi State is now 5-2 on the season.
In a win that would propel them from being unranked to the mid teens, No. 10 Florida beat No. 12 Michigan State 77-74. Chandler Parsons led UF in scoring with 14 from off the bench, Erving Walker poured in 12 second half points, and Dan Werner more or less iced the game with two late free throws. Florida's defense was big despite the high scoring from the Spartans as the Gators forced 22 turnovers. Florida is now 8-0 on the season.