The University of Kentucky released its complete 2017-18 basketball schedule and it includes the standard 18 conference games, nine of which are at home.
I ranked the nine road games earlier today, and now it’s time we take a closer look at the nine home SEC contests.
1. Texas A&M
When: Tuesday, January 9
As I noted in my road game rankings, Texas A&M is a dangerous team with the return of Robert Williams, the SEC Defensive Player of the Year and a projected lottery pick in this past draft, who decided to return for a sophomore season; Tyler Davis, an All-SEC selection last season; and D.J. Hogg at small forward.
Making the game even more difficult, Kentucky will see A&M in only the fourth game of league play after a quick turnaround from road trips to LSU and Tennessee. The A&M game is the third of three games in less than a week, plus travel.
When: Saturday, February 17
All eyes will be on the young talent in the Kentucky-Alabama game on February 17 when Collin Sexton and John Petty come to town with the Crimson Tide. Ranked as the top point guard in the incoming class, Sexton is projected to be one of the best guards in the conference as a true freshman.
When: Saturday, January 20
The Florida game is always one of the marquee matchups of the season and this year’s meeting is no different. The winner of the January 20 game will likely have early control of the SEC East standings.
Florida will be a top 10 team in most, if not all, preseason college basketball polls.
When: Saturday, February 24
By the time Missouri comes to Lexington, the Wildcats will have already seen and played Michael Porter Jr., so he won’t be quite as big of a draw in the rematch. But it’s still one of the better games on the schedule, right up there with the three listed above and I think all four are top 25 teams.
When: Sunday, December 31
New Year’s Eve game… How do you feel about that? I don’t think I like it. It’ll be cutting into my party time, but some of you will turn it into a nice doubleheader.
When: Tuesday, January 30
Maybe the last time we see Riley LaChance, Matthew Fisher-Davis and Jeff Roberson?
Eh, probably not. They’ll be back again next year.
When: Tuesday, February 6
Earlier I told you everything I know about Tennessee basketball right now. That has not changed and likely will not change until after Christmas.
8. Ole Miss
When: Wednesday, February 28
If you were impressed by how little I know about Tennessee, I know even less about Ole Miss. I think that transfer guard from Miami is back for another year? He was good last season. Sebastian Saiz is finally gone, though.
Ole Miss gets the nod over Mississippi State because it’s senior night for Kentucky’s zero seniors.
9. Mississippi State
When: Tuesday, January 23
Assuming Ben Howland hasn’t brought the program down by mid-January, Mississippi State will come to Lexington with two Owensboro boys on its roster in Eli Wright and Aric Holman. Quinndary Weatherspoon and his 16.5 points per game in 2016-17 will also be back, but Mississippi State hasn’t won a game against Kentucky since Billy Gillispie’s last year — and we don’t even count those.
Plan accordingly, BBN.