NCAA Predictions: Who will cover in the SEC Tournament on Friday? 3/9/18

NCAA Predictions: Who will cover in the SEC Tournament on Friday? 3/9/18

The two morning games were decided on the last possession, with Collin Sexton and Alabama hitting a buzzer-beating layup to defeat Texas A&M and potentially play themselves back into the NCAA tournament, as well as Kassius Robertson missing a potential-game-winning three from the corner that allowed Georgia to pull off the upset over Missouri. Though I believe Auburn will be eager to win, I have a hard time not picking Tennessee to win it all in the SEC Tournament. "Collin Sexton made a terrific play to advance", Auburn coach Bruce Pearl told reporters in St. Louis.

Based on the way the SEC has played out this year, it's probably safe to say that we're in for some more nail-biting action in St. Louis the next couple of days. Each presents unique challenges.

Alabama hadn't controlled a game the way it did this one for a long time. They play with a lot of heart. They're deep, they're long, they're athletic. "We know what they're going to do".

That won't happen in 2018 - the Tide won 76-71 in Tuscaloosa on January 17.

Sexton also surged into Alabama's tournament record books, as his 31-point performance ranks third all-time in points scored in a conference tournament game, while his two-game total of 58 points now ranks fourth all-time in total points scored at an SEC tournament. Alabama went up by 7 coming into the second half, 35-28. Jared Harper, Sexton's high school teammate at Pebblebrook in Mableton, Ga., scored 21 points to lead the Tigers, who shot 46.2 percent from the floor and turned the Tide over 17 times.

Hightower, who averages 3.3 points per game, scored 13 points in each of his first two SEC tournament games, and he'll need to match that output in order for the Bulldogs to have an opportunity to beat Kentucky. "Something we can learn from is that the game's not over until the buzzer goes off". But it's a new season. From start to finish, we have a pretty good resume.

NCAA Predictions: Who will cover in the SEC Tournament on Friday? 3/9/18
NCAA Predictions: Who will cover in the SEC Tournament on Friday? 3/9/18

An Alabama loss would have been its sixth in a row and would have lowered its record to 17-15 overall.

Anyway, the Quadrant 1 victory should eliminate any uncertainty about Alabama and the NCAA Tournament meaning the SEC is likely to get a record eight teams in. Kentucky won the lone encounter this season on December 31, 66-61.

Pearl discounted the notion that fatigue might slow Auburn's opponent on Friday.

"He breeds confidence in our team", Alabama coach Avery Johnson said of his star combo guard. "I thought we overcame adversity today".

"They've got something going on right now", Pearl said.

"We got stuck against their zone in the second half but persevered", Johnson said.

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