The regular season has ended and the standings and seeds are final. Click to see the bracket and TV schedule for the 2012 SEC Tournament.
The SEC Tournament starts on March 8th in New Orleans, and the top-ranked Kentucky Wildcats will be looking to make what they hope to be their first of two trips to the Big Easy.
Tournament Site: New Orleans Arena, New Orleans, LA
Tournament Dates and TV Coverage:
- First Round: Thursday, March 8th at 1:00, 3:30, 7:30, and 10:00 (SEC Network)
- Quarterfinals: Friday, March 9th at 1:00, 3:30, 7:30, and 10:00 (SEC Network)
- Semifinals: Saturday, March 10th at 1:00 and 3:30 (ABC)
- Championship: Sunday, March 11th at 1:00 (ABC)
Seeding/Bracket Notes: The top four seeds receive byes to the Quarterfinals on Friday, March 9th. Despite the fact that teams still played schedules according to the “old” divisional setup, seeding will done strictly according to conference record.
SEC Tournament Outlook
Kentucky is a Christian Watford shot away from being unbeaten this season, and they currently have a three-game lead over Florida in the race for the regular season crown. The Wildcats are as talented and balanced as any team in the country with six players scoring at least 9.6 points per game. Freshman phenom Anthony Davis (13.8 ppg, 9.8 rpg, 4.8 bpg, 64.6 FG%) has worked his way into the National Player of the Year discussion, and his ability to impact the game defensively is unparalleled. Fellow freshman Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (12.2 ppg, 7.8 rpg) is a do-it-all competitor who is as tough as they come, and sophomores Doron Lamb (13.7 ppg, 48.7 3P%) and Terrence Jones (12.2 ppg, 6.9 rpg, 1.9 bpg) provide additional scoring punch. The Cats have rarely been challenged in league play, and they are the clearcut favorite to win this event.
Second-place Florida has five double-digit scorers of their own, led by Kenny Boynton (17.6 ppg, 44.2 3P%) and freshman Brad Beal (14.5 ppg, 6.3 rpg). The Gators have a glut of talented guards and are hitting exactly 40 percent from beyond the arc this season. They do have a talented big man in sophomore Patric Young (10.4 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 61.9 FG%), but the team often struggles to get him involved. The recent injury to Will Yeguette really hurts a team that had limited frontcourt depth to begin with, but that would be a huge issue if they face Kentucky in the tournament.
After starting the season in the Top 10, Vanderbilt has seen its share of ups and downs, but the Commodores have a very potent offense. They rely heavily on five players to do the bulk of the scoring, led by sharpshooter John Jenkins (20.1 ppg, 46.1 3P%). Forward Jeffery Taylor (17.3 ppg, 5.9 rpg, 46.5 3P%) has had a solid senior season, and big man Festus Ezeli (10.1 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 2.2 bpg) has played better of late after missing time earlier in the season with a knee injury. A potential Semifinal matchup between the Commodores and Gators would definitely be entertaining.
A number of other teams may well be playing for their post-season lives in the SEC Tournament. As it stands, Alabama and Mississippi State seem to be the other squads most likely to go dancing, but LSU may also have a shot depending on how they close out the regular season.
This tournament certainly looks like Kentucky’s to lose based on how well they have played this season. The fact that they may be also playing for the top overall seed in the NCAA Tournament gives them added incentive, but the outside shooting of Florida and Vanderbilt could be an equalizer in a tight game.
SEC Mens Basketball Tournament History: Champions and MVPs
|Year||SEC Tournament Champion||Site||SEC Tournament MVP|
|1933||Kentucky Wildcats||Atlanta, GA|
|1934||Alabama Crimson Tide||Atlanta, GA|
|1936||Tennessee Volunteers||Knoxville, TN|
|1937||Kentucky Wildcats||Knoxville, TN*|
|1938||Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets||Baton Rouge, LA|
|1939||Kentucky Wildcats||Knoxville, TN|
|1940||Kentucky Wildcats||Knoxville, TN|
|1941||Tennessee Volunteers||Louisville, KY|
|1942||Kentucky Wildcats||Louisville, KY|
|1943||Tennessee Volunteers||Louisville, KY|
|1944||Kentucky Wildcats||Louisville, KY|
|1945||Kentucky Wildcats||Louisville, KY|
|1946||Kentucky Wildcats||Louisville, KY|
|1947||Kentucky Wildcats||Louisville, KY|
|1948||Kentucky Wildcats||Louisville, KY|
|1949||Kentucky Wildcats||Louisville, KY|
|1950||Kentucky Wildcats||Louisville, KY|
|1951||Vanderbilt Commodores||Louisville, KY|
|1952||Kentucky Wildcats||Louisville, KY|
|1979||Tennessee Volunteers||Birmingham, AL||Kyle Macy, Kentucky|
|1980||LSU Tigers||Birmingham, AL||DeWayne Scales, LSU|
|1981||Ole Miss Rebels||Birmingham, AL||Dominique Wilkins, Georgia|
|1982||Alabama Crimson Tide||Lexington, KY||Dirk Minniefield, Kentucky|
|1983||Georgia Bulldogs||Birmingham, AL||Vern Fleming, Georgia|
|1984||Kentucky Wildcats||Nashville, TN||Charles Barkely, Auburn|
|1985||Auburn Tigers||Birmingham, AL||Chuck Person, Auburn|
|1986||Kentucky Wildcats||Lexington, KY||John Williams, LSU|
|1987||Alabama Crimson Tide||Atlanta, GA||Derrick McKey, Alabama|
|1988||Kentucky Wildcats*||Baton Rouge, LA||Rex Chapman, Kentucky|
|1989||Alabama Crimson Tide||Knoxville, TN||Livingston Chatman, Florida|
|1990||Alabama Crimson Tide||Orlando, FL||Melvin Cheatum, Alabama|
|1991||Alabama Crimson Tide||Nashville, TN||Allan Houston, Tennessee|
|1992||Kentucky Wildcats||Birmingham, AL||Jamal Mashburn, Kentucky|
|1993||Kentucky Wildcats||Lexington, KY||Travis Ford, Kentucky|
|1994||Kentucky Wildcats||Memphis, TN||Travis Ford, Kentucky|
|1995||Kentucky Wildcats||Atlanta, GA||Antoine Walker, Kentucky|
|1996||Mississippi State Bulldogs||New Orleans, LA||Dontae' Jones, Mississippi State|
|1997||Kentucky Wildcats||Memphis, TN||Ron Mercer, Kentucky|
|1998||Kentucky Wildcats||Atlanta, GA||Wayne Turner, Kentucky|
|1999||Kentucky Wildcats||Atlanta, GA||Scott Padgett, Kentucky|
|2000||Arkansas Razorbacks||Atlanta, GA||Brandon Dean, Arkansas|
|2001||Kentucky Wildcats||Nashville, TN||Tayshaun Price, Kentucky|
|2002||Mississippi State Bulldogs||Atlanta, GA||Mario Austin, Mississippi State|
|2003||Kentucky Wildcats||New Orleans, LA||Keith Bogans, Kentucky|
|2004||Kentucky Wildcats||Atlanta, GA||Gerald Fitch, Kentucky|
|2005||Florida Gators||Atlanta, GA||Matt Walsh, Florida|
|2006||Florida Gators||Nashville, TN||Taurean Green, Florida|
|2007||Florida Gators||Atlanta, GA||Al Horford, Florida|
|2008||Georgia Bulldogs||Atlanta, GA||Sundiata Gaines, Georgia|
|2009||Mississippi State Bulldogs||St. Pete, FL||Jarvis Varnado, Mississippi State|
|2010||Kentucky Wildcats||Nashville, TN||John Wall, Kentucky|
|2011||Kentucky Wildcast||Atlanta, GA||Darius Miller, Kentucky|
|* - Later vacated after Eddie Sutton scandal||Note: The MVP award was not awarded until 1979|
Click to see Andy’s complete Championship Week Preview.