ATHENS - There was a time it appeared Georgia was certain to be among the SEC's worst four teams and have to win five games in Nashville in order to win the SEC tournament. My, how long ago that seems now.
The Bulldogs have clinched at least a .500 record in SEC play, carrying a 9-8 conference record into Saturday's game at Alabama. The SEC tournament comes next week. All that's known is the Bulldogs will start play on Thursday, but their seeding could still fall anywhere between No. 6 and No. 9.
(And yes, the main goal would seem to be to avoid the 8-9 game, because that would mean a potential quarterfinal matchup with top-seeded Florida.)
Here are the SEC standings with one game to go, and the final opponent:
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Florida ........... 14-3 ... at Kentucky
Kentucky ....... 11-6 ... vs. Florida
Missouri ......... 11-6 ... at Tennessee
Ole Miss ......... 11-6 ... at LSU
Alabama ........ 11-6 ... vs. Georgia
Tennessee ...... 10-7 ... vs. Missouri
Arkansas ......... 9-8 ... vs. Texas A&M
Georgia ........... 9-8 .... at Alabama
LSU ................. 9-8 ... vs. Ole Miss
Vanderbilt ........ 7-10 .... vs. South Carolina
Texas A&M ....... 7-10.... at Arkansas
South Carolina .. 4-13 ... at Vanderbilt
Mississippi St. .... 3-14 ... vs. Auburn
Auburn ............. 3-14 ... at Mississippi State
Georgia holds the tiebreaker against Tennessee and LSU, so any tie with those teams means the Bulldogs get the higher seed. Arkansas has the tiebreaker over Georgia. (The first tiebreaker is head-too-head, either in a two-way or multi-team scenario.) Since Georgia beat Tennessee twice, any multi-team tiebreaker involving Georgia and Tennessee should also go the Bulldogs' way.
So a few scenarios, as far as I can figure:
- In order for Georgia to get the No. 6 seed, it needs to win, and have Tennessee and Arkansas lose.
- Georgia can fall to the No. 9 seed if it loses to Alabama, and LSU wins.
- If the favorites win each game - Georgia loses to Alabama, Arkansas beats Texas A&M and Ole Miss beats LSU - then Georgia will be the No. 8 seed, ahead of LSU.
You can look at the SEC tournament bracket here. Or here's the written-out version:
Game 1: No. 12 vs. No. 13, 7:30 p.m. ET
Game 2: No. 11 vs. No. 14, 10 p.m. ET
Game 3: No. 8 vs. No. 9, 1 p.m. ET
Game 4: No. 5 vs. Game 1 winner, 3:30 p.m. ET
Game 5: No. 7 vs. No. 10, 7:30 p.m. ET
Game 6: No. 6 vs. Game 2 winner, 10 p.m. ET
Game 7: Florida vs. Game 3 winner, 1 p.m. ET
Game 8: No. 4 vs. Game 4 winner, 3:30 p.m. ET
Game 9: No. 2 vs. Game 5 winner, 7:30 p.m. ET
Game 10: No. 3 vs. Game 6 winner, 10 p.m. ET
Game 7 vs. Game 8 winner, 1 p.m. ET
Game 9 vs. Game 10 winner, 3:30 p.m. ET
Championship, 1 p.m. ET