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SEC NOTEBOOK: SCOUTING THE TOURNAMENT FIELD
April 22, 2008

SCS.comWith only four weeks of conference play remaining, the SEC Tournament is getting ever closer. As of now, the SEC East would get in each of their clubs with the West receiving only two bids. The locks for Hoover appear to be Georgia (14-3-1 SEC), who should get the top seed, Mississippi (10-8), who should win the West and therefore get the two seed, South Carolina (11-7), who is coming on strong, and Vanderbilt (10-7), a team that is finally playing up to their potential. After that, there are three teams in the mix - Tennessee (10-8), Florida (10-8), and Kentucky (9-9) - who should compete for the middle seeds of the SEC Tournament. So right now itís looking like Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, Vanderbilt, Tennessee, Florida, and Kentucky should all reach Hoover. That leaves the final spot in the SEC Tourney up for grabs.

So who will get that final seed in order to help better their resume to get into NCAA postseason play? Currently there are four teams that could realistically get the eight seed. Alabama (8-10), Arkansas (7-10), Auburn (7-11), and LSU (6-11-1) all have a pretty good shot of reaching Hoover if they finish the season strong. If I were to guess who would get the final seed in the SEC Tournament, I would have to say that Arkansas has the best chance. The Hogs are coming off back-to-back series wins against Florida and Tennessee and are peaking at the right time. This week, they have a tough task in traveling to Oxford to play Mississippi, who is leading the West by two games. After that, a weekend series against Alabama looms that could ultimately decide who gets the final spot in the SEC Tourney. If the Hogs take the series against Alabama at home, they should be in a good position to get the final seed.

The past weekend in SEC play saw a very strange outcome in the final game in Baton Rouge between LSU and Georgia. A travel curfew for the Bulldogs ended the game in the 12th inning with a 10-10 tie, forcing Georgia to rush to the airport to catch their flight back to Athens. So what did the players wear on the plane? Due to how late the game ended, the UGA players had to wear their uniforms on the airplane. Also happening this past weekend was impressive series wins for South Carolina and Kentucky. The Gamecocks won their home series against Mississippi while the Wildcats took care of Florida, who has dropped their past three weekend series. So with only four weeks left in SEC play, hereís my guess at how the SEC Tournament in Hoover, Alabama will look.

1. Georgia
2. Mississippi
3. South Carolina
4. Vanderbilt
5. Tennessee
6. Kentucky
7. Florida
8. Arkansas

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