2015 SEC Basketball Tournament for March 13: Who, What, Where, and When

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Mandatory Credit: Joshua Lindsey-USA TODAY Sports

7:00 PM
#10  TENNESSEE VOLUNTEERS  16-15 (7-11)

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  • The Razorbacks are a lock for the NCAA Tournament and could be in position for a #4 seed with a good tournament.  I think that Arkansas is another team with Sweet 16 potential.  The Razorbacks have gone 8-2 over their last 10, and those losses were to Kentucky and LSU.  Sophomore Bobby Portis is a fantastic player and is indicative of all the young talent in this league.  Portis averages 17.8 points, 8.7 rebounds and 1.5 blocks a game.  He hits 56.3% on the year and has scored 20+ in three of his last five games.  6’6 G Michael Qualls averages 15.3 points and 5.5 rebounds.  He shoots a lot of three pointers but hits just 33.8%.  Senior Rashad Madden provides leadership and does it all with 10.0 points, 4.8 assists and 3.6 rebounds.  He hits 39.1% from long-range.  Arkansas is about as deep as Kentucky as 10 players average over 10 minutes a game and Mike Anderson’s team will get at you on defense.  This will be a very tough team to knock out of the tournament.

    Tennessee showed glimpses of the former self with the way they closed out last night’s game versus Vandy, but will need a full forty minutes against the Razorbacks.  .  Josh Richardson is having a great year and leads the Vols with 15.8 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.6 assists.  Armani Moore, at 6’5, leads the team in rebounds with 6.7 boards and averages 10.4 points.  points.  Kevin Punter averages 10.2 points a game.  Too often, the Vols are just a three-man team in scoring and will have to get more production from their other players.  Robert Hubbs at 7.2 points and 2.9 rebounds or Derek Reese (6.0 points, 5.3 rebounds) are good candidates candidate to step it up.

    The Volunteers and Razorbacks have split their games this year, both winning on their home courts by five points.

    #3 GEORGIA BULLDOGS 20-10  (11-7)
    #11 SOUTH CAROLINA GAMECOCKS  17-15 (6-12)

    The Bulldogs should have their NCAA bid in hand, but could use this game to better their seed.  The Bulldogs have been a solid, but not spectacular team and should have a better record if not for some key injuries.  Senior Marcus Thornton has been very solid in the paint all year and averages 12.2 points and 7.0 rebounds a year.  6’3 G Kenny Gaines is questionable for this game and he has been one of the Bulldogs best defensive players.  He can also score and averages 11.7 points and hits 35.7% from long-range.  JJ Frazier will also hurt you from outside and can take over a game with his long-range shooting.  Frazier hits 41.4% of his threes and averages 10.0 a game.  Nemanja Djurisic averages 11.5 points and 5.1 rebounds and hits 34.8% of his three pointers.  Charles Mann rounds out the starting lineup that averages in double digits with 11.2 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 3.7 assists.  Juwan Parker is working his way back from an Achilles injury but his 5.2 points and 3.8 rebounds will be welcomed back.

    South Carolina may be the best #11 seed team in any conference tournament anywhere.  They enter this game having won four of five.  Sophomore guard Duane Notice leads the team with 11.5 points a game, and Tyrone Johnson with 9.8. Johnson also distributes the ball well and has an A/TO of close to 2.0. Sindarius Thornwell averages 11.1 points and 4.9 rebounds. 6’5 Michael Carrera leads the team in rebounding with 5.7 a game and has 7.1 points. The Gamecocks buy into the team concept and play with a lot of hustle. That makes up for the 40.5% shooting percentage and 29.8% from three-point range.  This is a team that beat then #9 Iowa State on January 3rd and it appears that after a rough SEC stretch, they are back to playing at that level.

    South Carolina actually swept the Bulldogs this season with a 67-50 and a 64-58 win.

    Next: Know Your Enemy: Florida Gators

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