SEC Conference Odds Report: Big Blue Nation Back Atop the SEC
Like the tortoise chasing down the hare, the Kentucky Wildcats (20-5, 10-2 SEC) find themselves atop the SEC after winning a pair of (ugly) games against Vanderbilt and Ole Miss, the latter of which gave Kentucky all they could handle at Rupp Arena on Saturday.
Immanuel Quickley and Nick Richards continue to steadily improve as the season goes on, and John Calipari finally has a team that can hit free-throws!
Kentucky is 6th in the country in free-throw percentage and attempts, and when paired with their frenetic defense, the boys from Lexington look poised to make another run at an SEC championship.
If there is a concern going forward for Kentucky though, it would be their very terrible shooting from 3-point range, as entering this week Kentucky is ranked 243rd in the country from deep, which is doubly bad considering they are 349th in the country in 3-point attempts.
In other words, even Kentucky’s shooters are not very confident about hitting the outside shot.
It nearly cost them against Ole Miss, and it could be the reason they go home early in March.
This week Kentucky has a much tougher slate of games, with a road-trip to Baton Rouge to face LSU and a home date on Saturday against a Florida team looking to seal an at-large bid in the tournament.
From a pure wagering perspective, oddsmakers still consider Kentucky the short favorites to win the SEC Tournament at +250.
Oddsmakers also have Kentucky listed at +400 to make the Final Four and at +2000 to win the National Championship.
February 18: at LSU (18-7, 9-3 SEC); February 22 vs. Florida (16-9, 8-4 SEC)
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Auburn Holding Steady Despite Getting Out-Tigered in Columbia
If you needed further evidence that the college basketball season has been completely bonkers, let Auburn’s 85-73 loss at the hands of a paltry Missouri team serve as your latest example.
The Tigers of the Auburn variety had their 7-game winning streak come to an abrupt halt, and Bruce Pearl’s squad finally dug a hole too big to dig themselves out of after erasing multiple double-digit deficits during said win-streak.
Auburn (22-3, 9-3 SEC) also shot a miserable 1-of-17 from 3-point range in the loss to Mizzou, showing just how three-point reliant they are, but there are a lot of things to like from this team and this loss is almost surely a mere bump in the road.
Oddsmakers weren’t too overly concerned about Auburn’s loss, as they still have the Tigers listed as the second-best favorite to win the SEC Tournament at +275, with their odds to win the National Championship listed at +2800.
This week Auburn heads to the road to face off against Tom Crean’s Georgia Bulldogs before returning home on Saturday to face Tennessee.
February 19: at Georgia (12-13, 2-10 SEC); February 22: vs. Tennessee (14-11, 6-6 SEC)
Reeling LSU Looks to Halt Their SEC Odds Slide After Recent Slump
After starting the season a perfect 8-0 in conference, the Tigers of the LSU variety have hit a bit of a snag as they’ve dropped three of their last four games, all of which have come on the road.
LSU also struggled mightily at home to start the week against Missouri, as they had to rally from an 8-point second half deficit to get the win.
Unfortunately for LSU, their schedule will not aid their slump recovery as they host Kentucky and South Carolina this week, before heading out to Gainesville next week for a date with the Gators.
A strong week for the Tigers could vault LSU back to the top of the conference, but further stumbling could send LSU even further behind Kentucky and Auburn as they head into conference tournament action.
LSU’s odds to win the SEC Tournament remain unchanged from last week at +500.
February 19: vs. Kentucky (20-5, 10-2 SEC); February 22: at South Carolina (16-9, 8-4 SEC)
Gators Looking to Chomp Down At-Large Bid in NCAA Tournament
Florida (16-9, 8-4 SEC) continues to inch their NCAA Tournament at-large hopes over to the “locks” column after a pair of blowout wins over Texas A&M and Vanderbilt last week.
The Gators have now won four of their last five games and reminded everyone of just how good they can be when they are on their game.
However, finding consistency has been the bugaboo for Florida all season, and with a tougher slate of games on deck this week against Arkansas and Kentucky, we will learn a little bit more about Florida’s chances in March.
With that being said, the Gators certainly didn’t hurt their at-large chances with their performance last week and a split or better this week should help make that push for an at-large bid a whole lot safer.
Oddsmakers continue to have Florida listed at +700 to win the SEC Tournament next month.
Handicapping the Rest of the SEC Odds
In sizing up the rest of the conference, only two teams really appear to have a shot to join the Top 4 in the conference in the NCAA Tournament.
South Carolina (16-9, 8-4 SEC) has played itself back into the conversation for an at-large bid after winning a pair of games against Georgia and Tennessee last week, and marked the sixth win in seven games for Frank Martin’s Gamecocks.
Earlier wins over Virginia and Kentucky are probably not enough to get them off the bubble just yet though, as poor losses to Boston U., Stetson and Ole Miss could come back to haunt them come Selection Sunday.
The Gamecocks can use another signature win and a pair of games against Mississippi State (16-9, 7-5 SEC) may determine the NCAA Tournament fate for each school.
SEC Betting Nuggets
- Kentucky UNDER is 4-2 in their L6 games
- Auburn OVER is 6-1-1 in their L8 games
- LSU is 1-4 ATS in their L5 games
- Florida OVER is 6-2 in their L8 games
- South Carolina is 8-3 ATS in their L11 games
- Mississippi State OVER is 8-1 in their L9 games
- Alabama OVER is 6-1 in their L7 games
- Tennessee OVER is 5-2 in their L7 games
- Texas A&M OVER is 7-3 in their L10 games
- Mizzou is 3-0 ATS in their L3 games (1-9 ATS run prior to that)
- Ole Miss is 7-0 ATS in their L7 games
- Arkansas OVER is 12-1 in their L13 games
- Georgia OVER is 7-3 in their L10 games
- Vanderbilt UNDER is 7-4 in their L11 games