SEC Set Your TiVo: 02.04.12Posted by EMoyer on February 4th, 2012
Eric Moyer is the RTC correspondent for the Southern Conference and Atlantic Sun Conference and a contributor to the RTC SEC Microsite. You can find him on Twitter @EricDMoyer. See bottom of the post for the Official RTC Star System.
Vanderbilt @ #11 Florida – 1:00 PM EST Saturday on CBS (****)
- The best of a so-so weekend in the SEC lost a little bit of luster after Vanderbilt lost at Arkansas on Tuesday. As it still stands, the winner moves into second place in conference standings. Vanderbilt would tie Florida at 6-2 with a win, conversely the Gators could take a two-game lead on the Commodores with the home victory.
- Saturday represents the first of two meetings between the Gators and Commodores. Each of the previous three seasons have resulted in season sweeps. The Gators won twice in 2008-09; Vanderbilt took both meetings in 2009-10 while Florida won both regular-season meetings and eliminated the Commodores in an SEC Championship semifinal contest as season ago.
- This contest features the reigning SEC Player of the Week (Jeffery Taylor) and Freshman of the Week (Bradley Beal) and four of the top seven scorers in the conference. Additionally, the Gators and Commodores rank first and second, respectively, in three-pointers made and in three-point percentage.
- The Gators are one of two SEC schools undefeated at home (Kentucky) and Vanderbilt has the second-best road record in the conference at 4-2. Could the experienced-laden Commodores steal a key SEC road win after letting one get away on Tuesday? In their six losses, Commodore opponents have shot almost 39% from the three-point arc as compared to 31.5% in their 16 wins.
Ole Miss @ Alabama – 8:00 PM EST Saturday on ESPN2 (***)
- A pair of teams squarely on the NCAA bubble square off in Tuscaloosa. Both teams enter fresh as neither has played since Saturday. Alabama ended a three-game slide by beating Arkansas. Ole Miss owns a pair of quality conference wins (Arkansas, Mississippi State) but an overtime loss at Auburn will remains a stain on the résumé.
- The Crimson Tide have dominated the Rebels at home, winning 70 of the 80 contests.
- The Tide’s defense remains one of the top in the nation by allowing a scant 57.9 points per game this season,the ninth-best average in the nation and the best in the SEC. Only seven Alabama opponents have even reached the 60-point mark this season and four have failed to score 50 points. The Crimson Tide has held their opponents to just a 37.3% field goal percentage, the sixth lowest in the country. Ole Miss more than holds its own at the defensive end, holding opponents to 39.4% shooting and the Rebels are 11-2 when holding their opposition to less than 40% shooting.
- History says Alabama is the right choice in this game. In addition to their home dominance, the Crimson Tide are 27-2 in their last 29 games at Coleman Coliseum.
#1 Kentucky @ South Carolina – 6:00 PM EST Saturday on ESPN (**)
- For the second time in three years, Kentucky comes to Columbia, South Carolina, as the nation’s #1 team. South Carolina will play its second top-ranked opponent this season. The Gamecocks faced then-#1 North Carolina earlier this season in Las Vegas competing in the Las Vegas Invitational. UNC earned an 87-62 win.
- Kentucky’s most recent trip to Colonial Life Arena as the top-ranked team ended with the Wildcats taking an L. Devan Downey scored 30 points and South Carolina held UK to 38.6% shooting in scoring its first-ever win against a #1 team.
- The Wildcats have held their last three opponents to 50 points or less. It marks the first time UK has done so since the 1950-51 team held four straight opponents to 50 or fewer points.
- While a couple of similarities exist in this game and the 2010 game when the Gamecocks beat the #1 Wildcats (South Carolina entered on a losing streak and faced Florida in its previous game), Kentucky enters ranking second in the nation in scoring margin, +19.9, while South Carolina has been outscored on the season by 0.3 points per game.
Plenty of SEC games slated for Saturday:
- Arkansas @ LSU (1:30 PM on SEC Network/ESPN3.com) – Not quite as hyped as the regular-season finale in football between the Razorbacks and Tigers. Arkansas will attempts for the sixth time to earn its first road victory.
- Auburn@ #22 Mississippi State (4 PM Saturday on SEC Network/ESPN3.com) – A team that owns a 12-a record at home faces a team that’s 1-6 on the road. The Bulldogs can’t afford to take a bad loss to the Tigers.
- Georgia @ Tennessee (8 PM on FSN) – The Bulldogs have won the last two meetings in Knoxville and took the first meeting this season, 57-53, in overtime.
***** – quit your job and divorce your wife if that’s what it takes to watch this game live
**** – best watched live, but if you must, tivo and watch it tonight as soon as you get home
*** – set your tivo but make sure you watch it later
** – set your tivo but we’ll forgive you if it stays in the queue until 2014
* – don’t waste bandwidth (yours or the tivo’s) of any kind on this game