SEC Morning Five: 12.13.11 Edition

Posted by Brian Joyce on December 13th, 2011

  1. The Florida Gators swept the SEC Player of the Week awards this week. Center Patric Young averaged 18.5 points and 10 rebounds as he was named SEC Player of the Week. Young had a double-double in both games this week against Arizona and Rider. Great things happen when the Gator guards feed the low post as evidenced by Young’s 77.3% shooting from the field. Bradley Beal was named SEC Freshman of the Week as he averaged 13.5 points, five rebounds and two assists per game. Beal put up 18 points and four rebounds in the Gators’ blowout win over Rider. This is the second time this season that Beal has won the award.
  2. After a third consecutive loss, Tennessee coach Cuonzo Martin is considering changes to the starting lineup for the Volunteers going into Wednesday’s battle with the College of Charleston. Some Tennessee starters may be playing themselves out of the rotation for not buying into the defensive philosophy of Martin. “We’re definitely looking into it as we speak,’’ Martin said. “You look at every scenario. For us, we have to have a defensive mind-set, and I don’t know if we have that right now.’’ The Volunteers allowed Austin Peay to shoot 72% from the field in the second half on their way to their fifth loss of the season. Martin’s defense is allowing a 51.3 eFG% (254th in the nation) and has an adjusted defensive efficiency of 99.2 (162nd in the nation).
  3. Speaking of the Volunteers’ clash with the College of Charleston, Tennessee is looking at this game as a must-win situation. The Vols have lost three in a row coming into tomorrow’s game. On top of that, the Cougars beat Tennessee 91-78 last year in Knoxville. “Losing three straight, we have to get this win,” center Kenny Hall said. “We also remember them coming in and dominating us last year.” Martin’s squad is in need of a confidence-building win, and a win over CofC might do the trick. College of Charleston is 7-1 coming into the rematch with the Vols, with 6’7″ forward Antwaine Wiggins averaging 17.4 PPG.
  4. Alabama’s Anthony Grant is looking for more consistency from his young Crimson Tide team. The Tide raced out to a 38-16 lead over Detroit on Saturday only to allow the Titans to scratch back into the game in the second half. Alabama eventually won by eight points, but Grant was looking for more. “We’ve got to learn to maintain that focus and energy over the course of a 40-minute game regardless of a score or how things are going for us individually,” he said. “We’ve had spurts that lasted longer than they did tonight. We’ve got to figure out how to put that together for 40 minutes.” In the second half, Bama was limited to 35% shooting and were forced into nine turnovers, getting out-scored 32-24 in the second 20 minutes of action.
  5. There was no doubt that something was wrong with Kentucky’s Terrence Jones on Saturday in the Wildcats’ one-point loss against Indiana. It was mentioned here yesterday in the SEC M5. And now several experts, including Dick Vitale, are weighing in on what was wrong with Jones. “I can understand kids having a bad game. Not scoring. Maybe forcing turnovers. I cannot understand not playing aggressively, and he didn’t play aggressively in a very emotional [game]. The kid has to look in the mirror,” Vitale said. “There’s no question he let his teammates down. It’s not about putting up numbers. I have no problem with that. I have a problem if you’re not playing hard.” Jones took only three shots the entire game (scoring four points), but it was his defensive effort that forced John Calipari to relegate him to the bench for good with three minutes remaining in a close game on the road. Kentucky dropped to #3 in both national polls on Monday, although the Wildcats only fell to #2 in the RTC Top 25.
Brian Joyce (333 Posts)

Brian Joyce is an advanced metrics enthusiast, college hoops junkie, and writer for the SEC basketball microsite for Rush the Court.

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