I think it’s fair to say we need to do a bit of resetting, eh?
Let’s go down the ladder here.
- There are seven unbeatens left in the SEC: The Auburn Tigers (5-0), Mississippi State Bulldogs (4-0), Arkansas Razorbacks (3-0), Georgia Bulldogs (3-0), Ole Miss Rebels (3-0), South Carolina Gamecocks (3-0) and Tennessee Volunteers (3-0). Tennessee and Auburn have been most impressive this year, as they each rank 17th and 21st on KenPom thus far. The Vols are proving to be a threat even without their losses from last year, and Auburn is still doing the damn thing.
- The competition has been scarce, but the highly-touted Anthony Edwards has been playing rather well. He dropped 29 on The Citadel back on November 12. Next time he’s in action though, he’ll likely do better than the six-point outing he had against Delaware State.
- Let’s give a shout out to Mason Jones, who’s been playing his ass off. He’s a huge reason why Arkansas is 3-0 to start the year, having dropped an average of roughly 22, 6 and 3 in his first three games.
- The teams in Mississippi are doing rather well huh? I’d like to see them against tougher competition, but hey, you are what your record says you are right? In the case of Ole Miss? They play the Seattle Redhawks on Tuesday, which is a start, as they rank 188th on KenPom and are one of the quality teams in the WAC. As far as Mississippi State goes, they play the Tulane Green Wave later this week to start their run in Myrtle Beach.
- South Carolina is the last unbeaten team to discuss in the SEC. They’ve yet to play fierce competition, but they are still getting it done. Shouts to A.J. Lawson, who dropped 28 on Cleveland State a few days ago.
- The Kentucky Wildcats are still projected to do major things. But they did suffer a major loss at home last week. The Evansville Purple Aces went into Rupp and beat the previously top-ranked Wildcats, which was the first time in program history that Evansville had beaten a #1 team. The Cats got back on track on Monday, beating Utah Valley, 82-74.
- The Missouri Tigers are proving to be rather stifling. Despite losing an ugly one to the Xavier Musketeers last week, Mizzou bounced back with a 75-56 win over the Wofford Terriers on Monday. The Tigers have been very staunch defensively this year and that may fit their profile all year long. I imagine they’ll be very competitive and combative going forward.
- The LSU Tigers lost to the only good team they’ve faced this year — the VCU Rams — but have picked up wins over a solid Bowling Green Falcons team and Nicholls State. I figure we’ll know a bit more about them after their run in Jamaica, when they’ll play a very good Utah State Aggies team (shout out to Sam Merrill) and the Rhode Island Rams.
- The Texas A&M Aggies may have suffered a loss to the Gonzaga Bulldogs on Friday, but such is life against the Zags. They are 2-1 and should be favored against the Troy Trojans later this week as well as in their opener in Kissimmee against the Harvard Crimson. We’ll see how they fare down at the Happiest Place on Earth, though.
- Hey, the Vanderbilt Commodores still have merely a loss on the year after losing by one in OT to the Richmond Spiders. Richmond’s really, really solid at the very least, so it’s not that disappointing. Jerry Stackhouse’s team should be favored going forward in every game up until their matchup with the Buffalo Bulls on December 3 .
- Are there any more disappointing teams than the Florida Gators and Alabama Crimson Tide? In the SEC, probably not. UF is off to a sluggish 2-2 start with losses to the Florida State Seminoles and UConn Huskies. ‘Bama, meanwhile, lost of course to the Penn Quakers in their opener and then lost to the Rhode Island Rams up in Kingston last Friday. It’s not looking to be much better going forward, as their Battle 4 Atlantis opener is against Cole Anthony and the North Carolina Tar Heels. And they’ll play a quality Furman Paladins squad on Tuesday night, too.
Alright. We’re reset. Let’s get going.
All times Eastern, all games available on WatchESPN
Boston University Terriers vs. South Carolina — 7 p.m., SEC Network+
UMBC Retrievers vs. LSU — 7 p.m., SEC Network
Seattle vs. Ole Miss — 7:30 p.m., SEC Network+
Furman vs. Alabama — 8 p.m., SEC Network+
Texas Southern Tigers vs. Arkansas — 8 p.m., SEC Network+
The best game of the night is not the one on main SEC Network. That would be Alabama-Furman, which pits KenPom’s 71st ranked team (the Paladins) against its 74th ranked team (the Tide). Furman is 4-0 on the year, with their ‘best’ win coming against the 115th-ranked Loyola-Chicago Ramblers. Senior guard Jordan Lyons is off to a very good start to the year, posting doubles in three of the first four games, including a 24-point outburst against the Ramblers. This could prove to be an opportunity for Bama to get a good out of conference win against one of the better mid-majors in the country.
The other games on the docket could be somewhat interesting. While they’re 0-3, Texas Southern is still poised to finish near the top of the SWAC, so we’ll see how Mason Jones and Arkansas fare against them (the Hogs will probably win handily). Boston U should be solid in the Patriot League, but South Carolina should still be able to beat them in Columbia. Seattle, like we said before, should be very decent, but this is a game that unbeaten Ole Miss should get a W in. And lastly, LSU ought to be able to take down the Retrievers.