As Kentucky gets set for their final five games of the year, the chances of winning the SEC East regular season title has essentially evaporated as the Cats struggled to win conference games away from Rupp. They sport a disappointing 6-5 record, which ties them with Tennessee and Georgia, but leaves them only one game behind Vanderbilt in the quest for the presumably necessary second East seed in the SEC Tournament. Given UK’s thin roster, there’s a significant need to avoid playing Thursday. Four games in four days is a lot harder than three games in three days. So the focus now becomes catching and eventually passing Vanderbilt.
Here’s the remaining games for both:
In order for Kentucky to pass the Commodores and earn the first round bye, they would most likely need to finish at least 4-1 in the season’s final five games with one of those wins being on Senior Day in their head-to-head matchup. Vanderbilt, who like UK has played great at home and had issues on the road, have the advantage of traveling to LSU and Auburn in what you can assume are guaranteed wins. So, for Kentucky to catch them, they’ll likely have to drop two of their last three within the division. More importantly, for the Cats to get the second seed, they’ll want them to fall to Florida again.
If both teams finish with a 10-6 record in SEC pay, the tiebreaker will be determined by whoever fared better within their division. The Cats would win by one game, thanks to Vandy’s early loss to South Carolina. However, if the Vandy were to drop one of the road games against LSU or Auburn and then one to an SEC opponent, the next tiebreaker would be whoever fared the best against Florida. Both teams have already lost to the Gators, meaning their remaining games with Billy Donovan’s team carries even more significance. If they both were to lose again, then you move down the ladder with the record against each SEC East team, which could potentially be the same until South Carolina. And that would favor the Cats.
What does this mean? I have a headache and Kentucky needs to just win the damn games. That should take care of that.