Auburn and Tennessee are hoping to boost their NCAA Tournament resumes by cutting down the nets in St. Louis, while Florida, Kentucky and Arkansas look to ride recent waves of momentum all the way to a conference tournament title.
Should they win, they will make it to Saturday. And despite struggling, they can still beat Florida. "Anything can happen." Alabama is the ninth seed and plays its first tournament game Thursday against eighth-seeded Texas A&M (20-11, 9-9) in a rematch of a game the Aggies won 68-66 on Saturday.
Simply put, Tennessee basketball could not have asked for a better draw in the SEC Tournament. Of course, a couple of scenarios could change things. A loss for any of them in the first game, however, could make Selection Sunday a little uncomfortable depending on how the week plays out. Johnson acknowledged the tournament gives his team a chance to "hit the reset button".
"Really all we're doing, in fairness to our players, we're just trying to get them to win the next game", Fox said this week.
Missouri is an intriguing team to watch this week for a number of different reasons. Williams is the first Vol to be awarded the player of the year since the 06-07 season when Chris Lofton was named alongside Derrick Byars of Vanderbilt. Doing that alone is a major rarity for Rocky Top. Mike Anderson's team is great at home and at neutral sites, and playing in St. Louis for them is like playing at a neutral site with home tendencies. Most of the players in this SEC tournament field don't have significant postseason experience. The Gators could be the favorite in this event if Chiozza is playing well.
Starters Robert Williams and Duane Wilson also missed games with health issues this season, and Wilson suffered a season-ending knee injury against Kentucky, according to 247Sports.
POSSIBILITIES FOR PORTER: One of the biggest questions surrounding this tournament is whether it will mark the highly anticipated return of Missouri's Michael Porter Jr. Kentucky's success will largely be dictated by its collective efforts to score.
No. 13 Tennessee and No. 16 Auburn tied for first place with 13-5 conference records, matching the highest loss total for any SEC champion in league history.