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Mississippi State Is SEC Basketball's Spoiler

Just be cool, guys. Be cool.

Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

The Mississippi State Bulldogs are rounding into shape. Coming into the weekend set of games, MSU was in the mid 90s of the KenPom ratings, a massive improvement over last year's finish of 179.

Now, they're on a roll by their recent standards. With a 67-61 upset win over Alabama now in the books, the Bulldogs have (take your pick) won five of their last nine, four of their last seven, and three of their last four. That's pretty good for conference play given where the team has been at lately.

The win over Bama also makes State the SEC's official spoiler team. On Tuesday, they defeated Vanderbilt, and now they've taken down the Tide. Both of those teams are on the bubble for the NCAA Tournament, and both got hurt by losing to the Bulldogs. Even though KenPom doesn't think to poorly of MSU, the selection committee's pet disaster of a rating system the RPI had Mississippi State at No. 163 going into Saturday's game action.

That means that this week, two of the three SEC teams on the bubble picked up sub-150 RPI losses. Not good.

The Bulldogs will have to wait a while to strike again. While they do have Texas A&M and South Carolina coming up next week, those teams are well above bubble territory. In the final week of the season, they have a pair of teams not in Big Dance contention in Ole Miss and Auburn.

MSU can't hurt the SEC's bid count again until after the SEC Tournament has started, but some damage is already done. If Vandy and/or Alabama don't get NCAA Tournament bids, it could very well be due to their losses to the Bulldogs this week.