Power rankings based off KenPom, Sagarin, NET, and the good ol’ fashioned eye test. I also share some insights into the lates bracketology outlooks for relevant teams.
1. Alabama Crimson Tide 15-5 (10-1)
KenPom: 7, Sagarin: 11, NET: 8
The Tide nearly pulled off an insane comeback but fell just short this past Saturday in Columbia. A lack of energy and pace in the first 35 minutes of the game ended up costing Alabama their perfect record in conference. A controversial no-call as time winded down sealed the home victory for Missouri. That being said, they still look the part to make a deep run this year.
2. Tennessee Volunteers 13-4 (6-4)
KenPom: 12, Sagarin: 10, NET: 10
Tennessee completed a comeback victory over Kentucky in a fast paced game on Saturday night. The Volunteers struggled early but were led to a come from behind win by the play of their two 5 star freshman. They still perform well metrically with the top ranked defensive efficiency in the country. Look for Rick Barnes squad to be a 3 or 4 seed in the Big Dance.
3. Missouri Tigers 13-3 (6-3)
KenPom: 29, Sagarin: 32, NET: 24
The Tigers added a signature win over Alabama this weekend. At times they appeared dominant but also had perhaps the worst five minutes of league play this season. I cannot decide if that is cause for concern or impressive that they still won after giving up a 21-2 run near the end of the matchup. Probably a little of both. Regardless, the Tigers continue to exceed my expectations. Missouri currently holds the largest gap between AP ranking and KenPom ranking in the country.
4. Florida Gators 10-5 (6-4)
KenPom: 28, Sagarin: 29, NET: 31
The Gators have shown flashes of being a real threat at times but exposed their weaknesses as well. After a signature road victory against West Virginia they dropped a brutal home game to a struggling South Carolina team. I see Florida as a team with high upside but is liable to lose to just about anyone. They will need to execute down the stretch as they aren’t quite a lock for March Madness just yet.
5. Arkansas Razorbacks 14-5 (6-4)
KenPom: 26, Sagarin: 23, NET: 29
The Razorbacks boast an impressive record but lack any signature wins. A road game against Kentucky could provide the Hogs with another Quad 1 win depending how the Wildcats finish the season. The Hogs have a tough stretch of games ahead of them but can make the tournament if they simply win the games they are expected to. The Hogs are still missing a scorer that can create space for themselves but Moses Moody and Devo Davis continue to improve.
6. LSU Tigers 11-6 (6-4)
KenPom: 43, Sagarin: 40, NET: 42
Will Wade. Doing the least with the most and cheating all along the way. The American Gangster’s team is struggling at the moment and need to turn things around fast if they want to play in March. The good news for the Tigers is they have more than enough talent to do so. If they can put together 4 wins in their last 6 (against 4 weak opponents) they will be living life on the bubble.
7. Kentucky Wildcats 5-12 (4-6)
KenPom: 56, Sagarin: 55, NET: 80
What a strange year. The uber-talented Wildcats look like they are right on the cusp of finally turning the corner. With their lone hope for a tournament appearance coming in the SEC tournament the upcoming weeks will be about building confidence in this young team. Do not be surprised to see Kentucky in the SEC championship game at the end of the Conference tournament.
8. Ole Miss 10-8 (5-6)
KenPom: 66, Sagarin: 62, NET: 65
Ole Miss finds themselves on the outside looking in as March approaches. Barring a 6-2 finish in conference play (including their current two game win streak) the Rebels will not receive too much attention in regard to the Big Dance. They continue to struggle on the offensive end of the floor but have some easier matchups to finish league play.
9. Auburn Tigers 10-10 (4-7)
KenPom: 59, Sagarin: 57, NET: 66
Auburn is another young team with plenty of talent that is struggling this season. The Tigers high powered offense wasn’t enough this weekend as they dropped another league game to Ole Miss. This team could be a threat in the SEC tournament but likely doesn’t have quite enough ability to make serious noise down the stretch.
10. Mississippi State Bulldogs 11-9 (5-6)
KenPom: 65, Sagarin: 68, NET: 73
The Bulldogs have struggled in conference play and lack many dangerous weapons. They hold the 39th ranked defense but when paired with their 82nd ranked offense there is much left to be desired.
11. Georgia Bulldogs 12-6 (5-6)
KenPom: 90, Sagarin: 83, NET: 100
The Bulldogs don’t have a horrible record but they perform horrible in most major metrics. There isn’t much to be excited about with this squad and the next few weeks could be hard to watch with a tough stretch on the schedule.
12. South Carolina Gamecocks 5-7 (3-5)
KenPom: 84, Sagarin: 11, NET: 110
Road win at Florida. Home loss to Mississippi State. That should tell you what you need to know about Frank Martin’s Gamecocks this season. At the end of the day they do not pose a formidable threat to most opponents with a lackluster offense and defense.
13. Texas A&M Aggies 8-7 (2-6)
KenPom: 124, Sagarin: 112, NET: 135
Buzz Williams team has struggled this season with the worst offensive efficiency in the conference. The Aggies are lucky to be bailed out by a bad Vanderbilt team to avoid holding the worst record in the conference.
14. Vanderbilt Commodores 5-9 (1-7)
KenPom: 130, Sagarin: 131, NET: 146
This is where they belong. This is around where they will be for a for a few years unless they make some drastic changes. The days of Vanderbilt being a basketball school have come to an end, but hey, at least they can look forward to baseball.