College basketball preview: SEC tournament

.fast facts

SEC tournament

When/where: Today-Sunday; Georgia Dome, Atlanta

The favorites: Florida has the best record in the SEC and has won nine of its past 13 games. Kentucky struggled badly away from Rupp Arena (4-7), but the Georgia Dome isn't nicknamed "Catlanta" for nothing. Kentucky fans travel in droves, which makes the arena like a home game. Kentucky enters on a three-game winning streak and playing some of its best basketball of the season.

Dark horses: Mississippi State won eight of its past 11 games and proved last year that when desperate to get into the NCAA Tournament, the Bulldogs are dangerous. Tennessee was just 8-8 in conference play and lost six of its past nine games but has been tough for many opponents all season. Georgia went 4-4 down the stretch and has wins over Tennessee, Mississippi State and Kentucky this season.

What Florida must do: Put the balloons and party favors away. Florida is playing its best basketball right now, earned only the third outright regular-season championship in Gator history this past weekend and isn't on the NCAA bubble for the first time in three years. But this is also the team that lost to Central Florida and Jacksonville. The most important thing for the Gators is to continue doing what got them here and avoid feeling satisfied with what they accomplished.

Antonya English, Times staff writer

First round Quarterfinals Semifinal Championship Semifinal Quarterfinals First round
Today Friday Saturday Sunday Saturday Friday Today
W1 Alabama E1 Florida
W5 Auburn 1, Ch. 38 7:30, Ch. 38 E5 Tennessee
1, Ch. 38 7:30, Ch. 38
E4 Georgia 1, Ch. 28 1, Ch. 28 3:30, Ch. 28 W4 Arkansas
E2 Kentucky W2 Miss. State
E6 S. Carolina 3:30, Ch. 38 10, Ch. 38 W6 LSU
3:30, Ch. 38 10, Ch. 38
W3 Ole Miss E3 Vanderbilt

College basketball preview: SEC tournament 03/09/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, March 9, 2011 8:35pm]

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