It’s finally the weekend that fans across the SEC and Big 12 have long waited for since last College Basketball season. It’s SEC/ Big 12 challenge time and this year’s matchups between the two conferences have major NCAA Tournament implications on the line. From Alabama to Baylor, all eyes will turn to these two conferences as they go to war on Saturday to prove their dominance in the college basketball world.
In the early half of the day, Alabama will head to Norman, Oklahoma, to take on the Lon Kruger and his Sooners in a highly anticipated top 25 basketball matchup.
Alabama comes into the game with Oklahoma riding a ten-game winning streak with an impressive 14-3 record. Since the start of SEC play, Alabama has looked like a Final Four caliber team. With a win in Norman, Alabama would solidify itself as a legitimate National Championship team. Not to mention, a win over the Sooners would lock a top-four seed line position for the Crimson Tide as they turn the home stretch.
Following the Alabama and Oklahoma game, you have a battle between Texas Tech and LSU from Baton Rouge. LSU comes into the matchup with Tech looking for a signature win over a top ten team. LSU has been a weird team all season long one day; they look like a Final Four team. Head Coach Will Wade will look to help his team find its identity on Saturday afternoon.
A little later that afternoon, you have an undefeated Baylor team hosting Auburn. Baylor has remained undefeated by smothering their opponents on the defensive side of the court. The matchup with Auburn could be an interesting one if the Bears are unable to silence Sharife Cooper. Looking at this matchup on paper, it appears to be an easy win for Baylor, but if there’s anything we’ve ever learned about Bruce Pearl, it would be that his teams are always ready to play spoiler.
Lastly, we make our way to Rocky Top, as the Volunteers get ready to host the Kansas Jayhawks in a blockbuster matchup! Once the matchups were announced in the preseason, fans from across the country shifted their focus to the exciting matchup between Tennessee and Kansas. Like LSU, Tennessee is looking for a signature win to help with the identity of this team. One thing is for certain as the Volunteers get ready to host Kansas, Head Coach Rick Barnes knows has always been able to get his teams to buy in and win the big ones. Saturday night on Rocky Top has the potential to be a special one for the Volunteers. A win over Kansas would put Tennessee into a position to make a run at a top-four seed line NCAA Tournament bid. Tennessee and Kansas will tip-off at 5:00 P:M: central time and can be found on ESPN.
With the entire College Basketball world watching, the SEC/ Big 12 challenge will be an excellent preview of the upcoming NCAA Tournament, and who knows, a possible Final Four team could spread their wings and soar.