SEC Tournament Odds & Picks: Can Anyone Take Down Kentucky?
Kentucky did what Kentucky does this season – win the SEC.
The Wildcats won their 49th SEC regular season title, more than half of all the seasons in conference history. They did so by a solid three games over Auburn and LSU.
But over the other top-seven contenders in the conference, UK lost to three of them. And in a conference that may have only four teams in line for an NCAA Tournament berth, a lot of teams on the fringe have motivation to leave it all on the court, making for some potentially interesting enjoy March Madness betting.
2020 SEC Tournament Odds
Kentucky is the favorite at +175, but Auburn isn’t far down the line. LSU and Florida are close enough behind, with a gap separating the rest.
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SEC Tournament Favorites
Kentucky has won nine of 10, the lone loss a home shocker to Tennessee in which the Wildcats led by double figures in the second half. The Cats lost at Auburn on Feb. 1 but won the rematch at home on Feb. 29. Auburn has been shakier of late. The Tigers started the season 15-0 but went 9-6 the rest of the way. They lost to six different SEC teams, and four of their nine wins down the stretch came in overtime.
It’s a similar story for LSU, which at one time was 17-4 but lost seven of its final 11 games of the regular season. Florida lost twice to Kentucky over its final five games and over its final 14 games is a modest 7-7.
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Darkhorses To Consider
Whereas many teams in the Big Ten have competed well against the top tier of the conference, the middle of the SEC pack hasn’t fared as well.
Of the teams ranked 5-10, the best of the bunch were only 2-4 against the top four. One of them is Tennessee, which shocked Kentucky but isn’t likely to do so again if the Vols and Cats face off in the second round. The other is Alabama, which split season series with Auburn and LSU, and lost by single digits vs. Kentucky and Florida. The Crimson Tide, however, have lost four of six.
That leaves Arkansas (+2500) for college basketball bettors looking for a surprise. The Razorbacks went only 1-4 vs. the top teams, but three of those losses were by seven points or less. They’re playing the best of the bunch, winners of three of five including victories over LSU and Tennessee. But as the No. 11 seed, they’ll have to win five games to take the title. That’s a lot to ask.
SEC Tournament Picks
Kentucky is the clear favorite and is the only top-level contender to be hitting the SEC Tournament hot. Florida, LSU and Auburn will all battle on the other side of the bracket – Kentucky won’t have the gauntlet those three potentially face. Look for UK to at least get to the title game – from there, it’s a plus bet to win it all.