SEC Morning Five: 02.23.12 EditionPosted by EMoyer on February 23rd, 2012
- LSU extended its longest SEC winning streak since 2008-09 by holding off Georgia last night. The four-game winning streak has the Tigers “pushing for a bid” in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since that same season. They still must overcome bad non-conference losses to Coastal Carolina and South Alabama, though. As Storm Warren said in advance of Wednesday’s contest with Georgia, “We don’t want to slip up again.”
- After a hiccup against Alabama, Tennessee continued its late-season surge by beating fading Ole Miss on Wednesday. Prior to their loss to the Rebels, Volunteer guard Skylar McBee said Tuesday in regards to any potential postseason aspirations, “We’ve just got to take care of business one day at a time, and I think if we keep trying to get better, then everything else will take care of itself… I think you see a lot more people trying to figure where they’re going to be at the end of the season. You can kind of work the numbers a little bit better because you can see who has to go play at this place and who’s got who and what teams you’ve got left. But I think it’s a mindset you’ve got to have every day that, ‘I know I can’t look forward.'”
- Despite being reinstated to the team by head coach Anthony Grant, Alabama’s JaMychal Green will not play in Thursday’s critical contest at Arkansas. When asked what went into the decision, Grant said, “”He’s not playing Thursday. We’ll see how the week goes this week, and we’ll make some decisions after Thursday.” The Tide enters the game as a #10 seed in the latest RTC Bracketology. Arkansas’ slide started with a 72-68 loss at Alabama on January 28 starting a 2-5 slide that has seen the Razorbacks’ RPI fall from inside the Top 50 to #88.
- One Birmingham News columnist, Kevin Scarbinsky, wrote of Grant’s decision: “It’s the first sign of clarity for the remaining players in weeks,” and “Grant has earned the benefit of the doubt by putting this entire season at risk to teach a lesson that should last long past March Madness.” When Alabama cooled an improving Tennessee team on Saturday, “It gained the confidence of knowing it could win without Green and Mitchell if it applied pressure on defense and took the ball to the rim on offense.”
- Alabama’s opponent Arkansas has battled through the fatigue that manifested in a 19-point loss to Tennessee and a 30-point blowout at home to Florida. “I think sometimes fatigue is a factor and it might be even with our guys fatiguing now with having… only eight guys, eight scholarship guys for a period,” head coach Mike Anderson said Tuesday. Anderson has cut back on practice and weight rooms sessions for players have also been shorter.