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Sep 20

SEC ROUND-UP WEEK 3

Posted by: Ralph Lee at 11:37 am | Leave a Comment (0)
Category: SEC

Louisville 24 – Kentucky 17:  In a battle for the “Governor’s Cup” and bragging rights in the Bluegrass State, it was the Cardinals fending off a 4th quarter rally by the Cats to move both teams to 2-1. Coming into the game both teams had looked rather pedestrian on offense but it was the Cardinals who found their footing first and jumped out to a 14-3 lead late in the 2nd qtr.  The Cards never trailed but lost QB Will Stein to a shoulder injury in the 1st half. Freshman back-up QB Teddy Bridgewater stepped in and threw 2 TD passes and passed for 106 yds. The offense was not spectacular but they did just enough to manage a victory. As for the Cats, their offensive woes continue as Morgan Newton threw for 255 and 2 TDs but faced constant pressure all game long from the young Cardinal defense. The Cats could get nothing on the ground and that left Newton looking at a lot of 3rd and longs. His caused was not aided as early in the game his receivers continued to drop passes. The Cats played pretty good on defense, but are spending way to much time on the field because of the inept offense. Right now, the offensive line is struggling in blocking whether it is run or pass. They have to figure out something as they will welcome in the Florida Gators this Saturday to Commonwealth.

Clemson 38 – Auburn 24: The nation’s longest current winning streak came to an end on Saturday as the Auburn Tigers went to Death Valley and were hammered by the Clemson Tigers. Auburn jumped out to a quick 14-0 lead behind the running of Michael Dyer (52 yd TD run, 16 carries for 151 yds & 2 TD) and it seemed as if the SEC Tigers would run away from the ACC Tigers. But Clemson found itself in the 2nd qtr. behind QB TJ Boyd who finished the game with 386 passing yds and 4 TD; Clemson put up 21 2nd qtr points to tie the game at 21 going into the half. Clemson owned the 2nd stanza as Auburn’s defense was on the field way too much while the offense stalled. QB Barrett Trotter had a rough game passing for just 198 yds w/ 1 TD & 1 INT. Auburn’s secondary was severely exploited by Clemson’s aerial attack and that must be addressed going forward.

Vanderbilt 30 – Ole Miss 7: Coach Jeff Franklin has brought Nashville something it sorely needed…..a shot of enthusiasm. He has the Commodores sitting at 3-0, 1-0 and looking like a bowl team. They raced out to a 21-0 half-time lead against the hapless Rebels and were never threatened. RB Zack Stacey rip the Rebel defense to the tune of 169 yds on just 11 carries and Vandy took advantage of several Rebel miscues including 5 INTs off of Rebel QB, Zack Stoudt. The Rebels we held to less than 250 yds of total offense and the fans in Oxford are starting to sour on Houston Nutt.

Georgia 59 – Coastal Carolina 0: Mark Richt’s Bulldogs finally got a win, although it came against a FCS opponent. QB Aaron Murray threw for just 188 yds but he tossed 3 TD passes and RB Isiah Crowell ran for 86 yds and 1 TD. While this win certainly didn’t dissolve the disappointment the Bulldog faithful have suffered the previous two weeks, it does give the young ‘Dawgs’ something to build off of as they head down to Oxford this weekend to battle Ole Miss.

LSU 19 – Mississippi St. 6: Last Thursday it was the LSU Tigers heading into hostile territory when they went to Starkville to battle the Bulldogs. In what was expected to be a physical, hard-hitting, defensive battle neither team disappointed. But the ‘Bayou Bengals’ seemed to have the biggest hits and they certainly had the better offense on this night. The game’s only TD was score in the 4th qtr when Jarrett Lee hit Rueben Randle with a 19 yd TD pass. Aside from that, both team’s place-kickers were the main scoring threats. The Bulldogs were limited to less than 225 yds of offense and looked like a team that was just outmatched on offense. LSU’s offense just grinded the game out but did manage over 300 yds while punishing the Bulldog defense with physical line play. LSU will face another road test when they head to Morgantown Saturday to play W. Virginia.

Florida 33 – Tennessee 23: The Will Muschamp era at Florida notched its first meaningful win as the host Gators throttled the visiting Volunteers. The Gators led 30-13 after 3 qtrs thanks in part to a baffling defense that had QB Tyler Bray hesitant and confused for much of the night. It didn’t help that early in the 1st qtr, Vol WR Justin Harper left with an apparent knee injury. Without one of his weapons, Bray (288 passing, 3 TDs & 2 INTs) just did not look like himself against a tenacious Florida defense. The ground game for Tennessee never showed as RB Taurean Poole had 18 yds on 9 carries. Meanwhile, Gator QB John Brantley was efficient with 213 passing and 2 TDs; RB Chris Rainey ran for 108 yds and he also had two receptions for 104 and 1 TD.

South Carolina 24 – Navy 21: The Midshipmen pulled into Columbia on Saturday and almost pulled off a stunning upset. The Gamecocks needed a 4th qtr. TD run by Marcus Lattimore and then a couple of late defensive stands to hold off Navy. The Midshipmen battered the Gamecock defense with their triple option while their on defense played a good game. The difference was Lattimore who scored all 3 TDs for Spurrier’s club while running 37 times for 246 yds. QB Stephen Garcia was largely in effective so Spurrier decided that the best chance to win was on the legs of Lattimore. The Gamecocks will have to play better than that as they host Vanderbilt on Saturday.

Arkansas 38 – Troy 28: Bobby Petrino’s club raced out to a 24-7 halftime lead (as they have led by double-digits at the half in the first two games) but this time they almost fell asleep as Troy didn’t quit. Troy pulled to within 10 late in the 3rd but Arkansas was able to hold them off behind RB, Ronnie Wingo (20 carries, 109 yds & 2 TD) QB Tyler Wilson passing for 303 yds, 2 TDs & 1 INT. Troy QB C. Robinson shredded the Razorback secondary for 373 yds & 3 TDs but they could not get a ground game established to provide him with some balance. The Razorbacks have to be sharp as they will visit Tuscaloosa on Saturday to play Alabama.

Alabama 41 – North Texas 0: It was all Tide as Trent Richardson ran for a career best 167 yds and 3 TDs while the defense held North Texas to less than 200 total yds. This was just a tune-up for Nick Saban’s club as they will host Arkansas this weekend. If nothing, else, you know Arkansas can score points.

Sep 14

SEC Roundup Week 2

Posted by: Ralph Lee at 4:32 pm | Leave a Comment (0)
Category: SEC

Kentucky 27 – Central Michigan 13: For roughly three quarters on Saturday, the Cats’ offense looked like it was still stuck in neutral as it appeared a week earlier. But in the fourth quarter the offense, particularly the running game kicked it in gear and put away the Chippewas for a 2-0 start. Freshman RB J. Clemons had 14 carries for 126 yds including 87 yd TD gallop at the end of the 3rd. QB Morgan Newton only through for 114 yds and 1 TD but he also ran for 1 as well; La’Rod King had five grabs for 100 yds & a TD but the Cats receivers are still being plagued by a lot of dropped balls. The Cats defense had trouble shutting down Central Michigan’s passing game in the first half as the Chippewas had a 13-6 halftime lead. But the Chippewas were slowed considerably in the 2nd half as the UK defense once again pitched a 2nd half shutout.

Alabama 27 – Penn St. 11: The Crimson Tide continued their mastery of the Nittany Lions as they steamrolled through Happy Valley on Saturday. The Tide led 17-3 at halftime behind a stingy defense and a bruising running game. Trent Richardson finished the game with 26 carries for 111 yds and 2 TD and his backfield partner Ed Lacey rushed for over 50 yds as well. QB A.J. McCarron was just efficient and didn’t make mistakes as he threw for 163 yds and 1 TD. Meanwhile, Penn St. never could get the offense in gear as they were silenced on the ground for the second straight season against Alabama.

Auburn 41 – Mississippi St. 34: In what was one of the most entertaining games of the day, the defending National Champs survived a huge scare at home to extend the nation’s longest winning streak dating back to last season. The Bulldogs actually entered Jordan-Hare as the favorites but it was the home fans who watched their team jump out to an early 14-0 lead. Mississippi St. would counter with 2 TDs of its own in the first and the rest of the game was nip & tuck. It ended with Bulldog QB Chris Relf being stopped on the half-yard line of the Tigers as time expired. Relf would finish the game with 195 passing yds (1 TD & 1 INT) but he was also very adept at using his legs to punish the Tiger’s “D”. State RB Vick Ballard tallied 135 yds on the ground off of 21 carries and got 1 score as well. Auburn QB Barrett Trotter passed for 146 yds and 2 scores but it was the rushing of Michael Dyer (16 carries f/ 150 yds and 2 TDs) that excited Coach Gene Chizik; WR Emory Blake had 7 catches for 108 yds and 1 TD).

Tennessee 45 – Cincinnati 23: The visitors were up to the task for about 1 qtr; after that, UT showed just how tough an SEC opponent can be as they outscored UC 31-9 the last 3 qtrs. Vol QB Tyler Bray was just outstanding in throwing for 405 yds and 4 TDs while embarrassing the Bearcat’s secondary. Tauren Poole rushed for 101 yds on 21 carries as he continues to provide a complimentary piece to the UT aerial attack. WR Justin Hunter had another exceptional game as he hauled in 10 passes for 156 yds and 1 TD. The Bearcats offense was not bad as QB Zac Collaros threw for 230 yds and 2 TDs, RB I. Pead ran for 155 yds & 1 TD and WR D. Woods had 9 grabs for 111yds but the Vols offense was just too much. The Vols are hoping the high-octane offense arrives in the “Swamp” this Saturday when they battle Florida.

South Carolina 45 – Georgia 42: Well Mark Richt’s seat continues to heat-up as the Bulldog faithful see their team start 0-2 for the first time since ’96. Gamecock RB Marcus Lattimore battered the Dawgs for 176 yds on the ground & 1 TD and the Gamecocks defense scored a TD in the 4th off of an INT. QB Stephen Garcia was not sure himself as he only threw for 142 yds, 1TD and 1 INT but the running of Lattimore and the defensive TD bailed out the erratic Gamecock offense. For Georgia, it was once again their defense that had trouble, this time it was stopping the run (last week it was stopping the pass). Offensively, the Bulldogs got a boost from freshman RB Isiah Crowell who ran for 118 yds and 1 TD on 16 carries; a far cry from the Bulldog’s rushing offense last week. QB Aaron Murray passed for 248 yds and 4 TDs but the 1 INT was costly. The fans in Athens are becoming restless and I am not sure Richt wouldn’t have to “run the table” to keep his job after the season.

Ole Miss 42 – Southern Illinois 24: The Rebels jumped out to a 21-3 1st qtr lead and then from there, the Salukis played them even, each team scoring 21 pts in the other 3 qtrs. RB J. Scott paced the Rebels on the ground with 118 yds and 3 TDs as the Rebels continue to sort out their QB situation.  The Salukis were plagued by turnovers as QB P. McIntosh threw 4 INTs to go with the 2 TDs and 197 yds he had. The Rebels were just fortunate that they limited their mistakes as the Salukis were fairly game after a sluggish start.

Arkansas 52 – New Mexico 3: Another fast start for Bobby Petrino’s club as the Razorbacks ran away to a 31-3 halftime lead and cruised to victory. QB Tyler Wilson passed for 259 yds & 1 TD as Arkansas was simply too much for the Lobos. WR C> Hamilton had 5 grabs for 132 yds and 1 TD for Arkansas; RB Ronnie Wingo had 73 yds on 12 carries. The Razorbacks “D” was stingy once again as they held the Lobos to less than 250 yds of offense.

Florida 39 – UAB 0: Game# in the Will Muschamp era at Florida could not have went any better as they prepare for a visit from Tennessee this weekend. QB John Brantley still looks a little slow as he passed for just 195 yds but no TDs. All-purpose player Chris Rainey ran for 119 yds and 1 TD on 16 carries. UAB’s offense could do little if anything with the speedy Florida defense as they were held in check.

Vanderbilt 24 – Connecticut 21: For the first time in recent memory, the Commodores are off to a 2-0 start as they held off the Huskies on Saturday. The Commodores are getting ready as they will host the Ole Miss Rebels this coming Saturday. QB Larry Smith threw for 140 yds & 1 TD but had to 2 INTs but that was INT less than UCONN QB J. McEntee threw. In fact, it was INT ret. for a TD by Vandy in the 4th qtr that sealed the victory.

LSU 49 Northwestern St. 3: No let down for the Tigers after beating Oregon last week; they ran out to a 28-3 halftime lead in cruising to a 2-0 start to the season. Jarrett Lee was very efficient in throwing for 133 yds and 1 TD and RB M. Ford ran for 2 TDs and 72 yds. NW State could do little to dent the LSU defense in a game that was over at halftime. This weekend things may be different as the Tigers head to Starkville to play Mississippi St.

 

Jun 17

The SEC 2011-2012 Bowl Schedule Announced

Posted by: R.A.Pedigo at 1:25 pm | Leave a Comment (19)
Category: SEC

The Football Bowl Association has released their 2011-2012 Bowl schedule. The 35 game bowl schedule does not include one bowl game played on January 1, New year’s Day. January 1, 2012 is on a Sunday and is the final Sunday on the NFL schedule for 2012.

Below is the schedule for bowl games connected to the Southeastern Conference in 2012. Kentucky will attempt to make their 6th straight trip to the post-season in 2011-2012…

Fri., Dec. 30 6:40 p.m. ET Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl
Nashville, Tenn. ESPN

Sat., Dec. 31 3:30 p.m. ET AutoZone Liberty Bowl
Memphis, Tenn. ABC

Sat., Dec. 31 7:30 p.m. ET Chick-fil-A Bowl
Atlanta, Ga. ESPN

Mon., Jan. 2 1 p.m. ET Capital One Bowl
Orlando, Fla. ESPN

Mon., Jan. 2 1 p.m. ET Gator Bowl
Jacksonville, Fla. ESPN2

Mon., Jan. 2 1 p.m. ET Outback Bowl
Tampa, Fla. ABC

Tue., Jan. 3 8:30 p.m. ET Allstate Sugar Bowl
New Orleans, La. ESPN

Fri., Jan. 6 8 p.m. ET AT&T Cotton Bowl
Arlington, Texas FOX

Sat., Jan. 7 1 p.m. ET BBVA Compass Bowl
Birmingham, Ala. ESPN

Mon., Jan. 9 8:30 p.m. ET Allstate BCS National Championship Game
New Orleans, La. ESPN

Jun 9

SEC Coaches Try To Loosen Reigns On Twitter

Posted by: Ryan at 10:10 am | Leave a Comment (0)
Category: SEC

If Rob Tweeted freely he’d probably be in jail at this very moment. Something about the tailgate, twitter, and sports just gets him excited. I am still trying to put my finger on what exactly it is. Honestly at this point I’m not sure anybody knows exactly.

Twitter is weird, fun and obnoxious all at the same time. It allows all of us to follow the players, the coaches, the celebs, and in Rob’s case, Anthony Wiener, closer than ever before. Some of you don’t understand it, don’t care, don’t want to learn it, and simply aren’t interested. That’s fine. There are plenty of other things to do in this world anyways. But, in our business, it’s the next best thing to gold.

The good news for us, and those interested, is that coaches and athletics departments (specifically the only one we care about) get it and use it. At this point we know Coach Cal is a Tweet-aholic, Coach Tee Martin invented the hash tag, but what about Joker?? He’s on twitter right? So, how does he feel about it and think about his players (since there are so many of them) using it?

“This is a Twitter, Facebook world. We want those guys to have fun with it, but we want to keep it under control, also. We have always tried to educate our players and monitor, and when I say monitor, we would watch what they say, but we wouldn’t tell them what to say because we know the world that we live in,” Phillips said last week during the SEC meetings in Florida.

So what about other coaches in the SEC? How do they feel about Twitter and their players using it? The glass is half-full, or half-empty either way you slice it, here’s a few of the coaches comments:

Georgia football coach Mark Richt hasn’t placed restrictions on his players using it just yet, “I know it’s such a big part of the social life of these kids….I’m really not looking to shut it down. They sacrifice enough with the time they put in for school and football, with all the things we ask them to do.. If there’s any way possible to allow the guys who are responsible with it to keep it going, I think that’s great.. If a guy is irresponsible with it, normally there will be a good warning the first time around. If they continue to do things on a website that’s not good or healthy, we’ll shut an individual down.”

Mississippi State coach Rick Stansbury banned all of his players from Twitter in last season after star player Ravern Johnson tweeted he was unhappy about playing time, “starting to see why people Transfer you can play the minutes but not getting your talents shown because u watching someone else wit the ball the whole game.” Troubled teammate Renardo Sidney then retweeted the post which caused quite the stink in Starksville. Coach Stansbury, discussed that players will not use the social network during the season last week at the SEC meetings in Destin, “the players do not have Twitter no more. Offseason they can have what they want, but during the season, no. It just lets the world into your locker room and we have enough problems as it is keeping your locker room the way it used to be.”

Georgia basketball coach Mark Fox used to not let his players utilize the social medium, however he’s done a 180 on the topic in recent months. “They deserved a reward for the behavior they’ve had off the floor. We’ve had a year with good academic accomplishment and no social issues. They’re starting to show some maturity, so we’ll let some of those guys do that. There’s certain things that you should say and certain words that you should not. Social media is something that we never encountered when we were growing up trying to figure out who we were or who we are. That’s something this generation has to deal with. That’s different. As coaches, we’re trying to figure out how to manage that.”

Fox has built his own Twitter audience which is approaching 7,000 followers, a mere spec of dust compared to Coach Cal, however, it allows him to keep in touch with fans,  “It is something that I’ve done a little bit and enjoyed, and I think the fans have enjoyed it. What I tweet is a penny and what I talk about face-to-face is a $100 bill,” he said. “It’s a great deal more depth to that.” The UGA Coach also allows his players to tweet, within reason. “Kids aren’t going to be perfect.. We’ll give them a chance to stand on their own two feet. If they can handle it, they’ll keep doing it. If not, I guess they’ll have to suffer the consequences.”

Jun 3

SEC Football Scholarships Reduced to 25 From 28

Posted by: Ryan at 9:28 pm | Leave a Comment (0)
Category: SEC

The SEC football coaches voted Thursday to keep the 28 scholarship rule in tact for recruiting purposes. However, today the SEC university presidents and commissioner Mike Slive have vetoed the coaches decision and reduced the number of available scholarships to teams down to 25.

Under the old rule teams were allowed to dish out 28 total but only take 25 eligible players. The “over-signing” allowed players that might not meet academic standards to “grey-shirt” to work on academics and remain with the team. Now, under the new rule the 3 grey-shirts will not be available to teams meaning they will be forced to live with the players that can’t make the grades.

The tactic has been criticized of late for coaches like Les Myles at LSU and especially Alabama for not have room at the end of the day for players that were promised scholarships. Elliot Porter made that case famous when he was forced to leave LSU in search for playing time and enrolled at UK.

Other things happened at the annual meetings in Destin on top of the doing away with the divisions for basketball and the 28 scholarship rule, here are the notable changes:

– Commissioner Slive hinted that 18 league games for basketball will be something addressed next year
– 7 on 7 events can now no longer be held on campuses and coaches are not allowed to participate in them.
– The league will now decide if medical exemptions from the scholarship count will be allowed.
– There will no longer be eligibility for one-year transfers
– $220 million will be distributed to the 12 schools for tv contracts and NCAA earnings, which equates to roughly $18 million per team (excluding Mississippi State who was fined $30,000 for improper cowbell ringing)
Jun 2

Spurrier; Several SEC Football Coaches Propose To Pay Athletes

Posted by: Ryan at 9:35 am | Leave a Comment (0)
Category: SEC

The SEC meetings are going on down in Florida and we all know the heat and sun can get to a man. Well, apparently it’s gotten to Steve Spurrier. I know what your thinking… How can anything penetrate that thick skin on such a big head. Well, even more than you think is possible is guess. We all know he likes to throw a line out for whoevers listening, this time it’s the other football coaches in the SEC, including our very own Joker Phillips…

Spurrier is proposing that the coaches pay players out of their own pockets per game. The amount, roughly $300 a piece, for travel, lodging, food, entertainment, etc… Multiply that number by an entire football team and you are talking about some large coin. Maybe the whole Ohio State/Terrelle Prior/Jim Tressel issues are opening the eyes of some of the SEC brethren?

Here’s what Spurrier had to say: “I doubt it will get passed, but us coaches in the SEC, we make all the money — as do universities and television ] — and we need to give more to our players. We’d like to make that happen. It probably won’t, but we’d love to do it.…  Now, the other guys didn’t want to talk about it, but those guys, they thought it was a good idea.”

According to Edward Aschoff, ESPN’s new SEC beat writer
, “one of the “other guys” was Kentucky coach Joker Phillips.

Joker acknowledged the idea was well received by other SEC coaches but noted he wasn’t ready to sign off on it because it wasn’t a standard deal. The importance of the proposal, Phillips said, is that it should stir the debate about helping student-athletes financially. “One of the things is we had a dialogue with it,” Phillips said. “We’ve talked about having a way to put up money to allow the prospects to get some type of expense money.”

Apparently Spurrier’s idea may be dead in the water before it even gets off the ground. The problem is, it’s not an issue for the SEC coaches and AD’s to decide, it’s more of a need for national legislature which doesn’t necessarily move super fast.

It’s an idea, and an interesting one at that. But, I don’t agree with it for one second. Spurrier, Saban, Miles, Cyzck all make the big bucks, what about the coaches that don’t have the huge contracts? Like Joker, or Derek Dooley. Sure, even they don’t make small change but your talking close to $400k a year contribution from each coach… How could the university regulate a salary so that it’s not directly dispersed to the student athletes from the athletics departments?

Right now college athletes on scholarship take Per Diem on a weekly basis to cover expenses. Its definitely not on the level of being paid to play but it is cash that universities are allowed to share with athletes.

The way I look at it is simple. A scholarship is worth a ton of money now days, room and board, books, food allotment, tutors, transportation, etc. Compared to the average students college athletes have it pretty good these days, its it really necessary to take it a level farther and pay them? I do get it, most aren’t allowed to have jobs in school, during the season like the non-athletes. If their parents are funneling money to them they really don’t have a means of buying the stuff they want.

The question mark right now is obviously larger than the SEC, or any one conference and is definitely something that should probably be investigated further. For now we are just going to be left with hooligans like Steve Spurrier running their yapper about it.

Jun 1

SEC Basketball Divisions No More

Posted by: Ryan at 10:16 pm | Leave a Comment (0)
Category: SEC

Well that was fast! Earlier today we noted that the Coaches were voting on a lot of things including the conference divisions down at the Sandestin Resort in Florida as part of the annual SEC coaches, AD’s and presidents meetings. Well, now it turns out the coaches voted to do away with the divisional groupings (East and West) and submitted that recommendation to the Athletic Directors of the conference to finalize.

This change is effective immediately and the league will now be a single twelve team conference for the 2011-2012 seasons, and each team will keep their 12 game SEC regular season skid.

No word on how this will effect the SEC tournament or Football proceedings. We will update ya when the decisions are mandated.

United we stand!

UPDATE: According to Andy Katz over at ESPN, the SEC tournament format will also be shaken up. Here’s some snippet on his report from the meetings:

“Calipari said the coaches also recommended the four teams with the best overall conference records recieve byes in the SEC tournament. The current format rewards the two top teams in each division with a first-round bye in the SEC tournament, even if the second-place team in the SEC West has a worse record than the third-place team in the SEC East….

Calipari said the coaches discussed 16-game, 18-game and 22-game schedules.

For the 2012-13 season, the scheduling format would be a mixed bag with teams in the East and West playing each other twice in some cases to allow for more equity in a 16 or 18-game schedule.

Calipari said the model for next season would mirror the Big 12 scheduling format that existed until this coming year. The Big 12 had one 12-team division, but the schools used the football divisions for scheduling. The Big 12 lost Colorado (Pac-12) and Nebraska (Big Ten) and is now a 10-team league and will have an 18-game round-robin schedule for the upcoming season.

“Our goal is to have eight teams in the discussion for the NCAA tournament and we don’t want to hurt the top teams from winning the national title,” said Calipari in response to tweaking the format for the SEC tournament and protecting the top teams with byes. “We talked about non-conference RPI, too. Our league is really good. We want to have this squared away soon. We did our thing. These are our recommendations.”

Jun 1

Do We Need Reform? SEC Coaches Vote Today

Posted by: Ryan at 9:58 am | Leave a Comment (2)
Category: SEC

Yesterday at the Sandestin Restort in Destin, FL the SEC men’s basketball coaches participated in the annual league teleconference. The teleconference acts as a series of  business meetings taking into account coaches thoughts on particular subjects. One particular subject that has a ton of impact on the league is the myriad of divisional formats and conference tournament options that could better the league. The coaches will vote today whether or not a change in the league structure is needed for next season.

Supposedly, the talks are about whether or not to keep the league the same or combine the 12 team league into one, doing away with the divisional format. This would also impact the SEC tournament seeding, which will also be discussed.

Last season the East Coaches were’nt exactly happy with the tournament setup…

If the SEC does go to one division the overall scheduling format would have to be addressed. Right now each team plays a team from it’s division twice during the regular season and teams outside of it’s division once. Last year the West Division failed to enter a team into the NCAA tournament and the mutual feeling is that the West is being negatively impacted by the East’s success of late.

I guess we will see today if any of this matters.

May 29

4 Incoming Cats Among The Top Newcomers In SEC Basketball

Posted by: Ryan at 10:25 am | Leave a Comment (0)
Category: SEC

Jason King over at Yahoo! Sports lists out the top newcomers to the SEC next season which obviously includes the 4 incoming Cats. Here’s what he had to say about the freshmen to be:

Anthony Davis, Kentucky, F – Some recruiting services have pegged Davis as the top overall player in the Class of 2011. The 6-foot-10 Davis recently grew seven inches in a year and still has a tremendous upside. Because he used to be a guard, Davis has a tremendous feel and understanding of the game. His shot-blocking and rebounding ability make him a game-changer defensively. His offensive skill set is good and continues to improve. Davis plays with tremendous toughness and is extremely coachable.

Michael Gilchrist, Kentucky, SF – The third-ranked player in the Class of 2011 touts an elite level of athleticism that will make him a force in the SEC from the get-go. His ability to rack up points is often overshadowed by the ferocity with which he rebounds and defends. The 6-foot-7, 210-pound Gilchrist is solid from mid range but needs to improve his 3-point shooting. Mentally, though, Gilchrist has all the attributes (i.e. competitiveness, drive) of a winner. He prides himself in doing the little things it takes to be successful.

Marquis Teague, Kentucky, PG – Derrick Rose, Tyreke Evans, John Wall and Brandon Knight all starred as freshman point guards under John Calipari. Teague hopes to be next on that list. The 6-foot-2 Teague is the top-rated player at his position in the Class of 2011. Teague has an explosive first step and is almost impossible to stop one-on-one. He scores a ton of points from the free-throw line and is tremendous in the open court. He’s perfect for Calipari’s dribble-drive offense.

Kyle Wiltjer, Kentucky, F – A fundamentally sound player with a high basketball IQ, Wiltjer is a huge matchup problem for opposing defenders because of his ability to score both inside and out. Wiltjer is an exceptional passer and his shooting ability will help make Kentucky one of the most well-rounded, versatile teams in the country. His foot speed is a minor concern.

The rest of the list includes Trevor “I picked Alabama” Lacey and former Rutgers Guard Mike Rosario who is taking his talent to Billy Donovan and Florida:

Brad Beal, Florida, SG
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Georgia, SG
Rodney Hood, Mississippi State, SF
Trevor Lacey, Alabama, SG
B.J. Young, Arkansas, PG
Levi Randolph, Alabama, G
Ky Madden, Arkansas, SG
Johnny O’Bryant, LSU, C
Arnett Moultrie, Mississippi State, PF
Mike Rosario, Florida, G
Moussa Gueye, Alabama, C
Varez Ward, Auburn, G


May 19

The 2011 12-Team Big East/SEC Challenge Is Set

Posted by: R.A.Pedigo at 2:28 pm | Leave a Comment (0)
Category: SEC

Per the SEC, The Southeastern Conference will match up against the Big East Conference for 12 games over three days in early December for the Big East/SEC Challenge. Every SEC member will be a part of the event while 12 of the 16 Big East schools will participate. Six of the games will be played at SEC home arenas while six will be played at home facilities for Big East schools. ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU will combine to televise all 12 games of the three-day event.

This year’s event features the defending national champion (Connecticut), another Final Four participant (Kentucky) and an Elite Eight team (Florida) from last year’s NCAA Tournament. Nine of the schools are ranked in an early preseason top 25 by ESPN.com’s Andy Katz, including seven of the top 15 teams: No. 2 Kentucky, No. 4 Syracuse, No. 6 Connecticut, No. 7 Vanderbilt, No. 9 Louisville, No. 12 Florida and No. 14 Alabama.

The 2011 Challenge begins on Thursday, Dec. 1, with Alabama, Kentucky and South Carolina playing host to Georgetown, St. John’s and Providence, respectively, while Ole Miss travels to DePaul. On Friday night, Auburn will visit Seton Hall, Florida travels to Syracuse and Vanderbilt goes to Louisville while Georgia hosts Cincinnati. Saturday will see Tennessee host Pittsburgh and West Virginia will visit Mississippi State while Arkansas travels to Connecticut and LSU goes to Rutgers.

Last year the SEC finished with a 3-1 record in the annual event. Arkansas and Kentucky earned victories over Seton Hall and No. 23 Notre Dame, respectively, on Wednesday, Dec. 8, in Louisville, Ky. Tennessee upset No. 3 Pittsburgh while Auburn fell to Rutgers at the CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh on Dec. 11. In the event of a 6-6 tie this year, the Challenge trophy will remain with the conference that won the previous year. This is the fifth year that the SEC and Big East have played each other as a part of an in- ason event with the overall series tied 8-8. Previously known as the SEC/Big East Invitational, the first four years of the event (2007-2010) featured four matchups between the two conferences from two neutral sites.

The event title will alternate to the SEC/Big East Challenge in 2012 and be played Thursday, Nov. 29 through Saturday, Dec. 1. SEC teams will alternate home and away games.

2011 BIG EAST/SEC CHALLENGE (times and networks are to be determined)
Thursday, Dec. 1
Georgetown at Alabama
Providence at South Carolina
St. John’s at Kentucky
Ole Miss at DePaul

Friday, Dec. 2
Auburn at Seton Hall
Florida at Syracuse
Cincinnati at Georgia
Vanderbilt at Louisville

Saturday, Dec. 3
Arkansas at Connecticut
West Virginia at Mississippi State
LSU at Rutgers
Pittsburgh at Tennessee