SEC Basketball: Power rankings heading into the SEC season

A power ranking across the Southeastern Conference heading into the SEC schedule
The SEC season gets underway in just a few days
The SEC season gets underway in just a few days / Marc Weiszer/Athens Banner-Herald / USA
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SEC Basketball Power Rankings:
No. 6 Alabama Crimson Tide

Nate Oats’ Alabama Crimson Tide team still does what Nate Oats’ teams do: they get to the free throw line, and they chuck up threes. So far, that strategy has yielded positive results (third-best 3-point percentage, most 3-point makes, most free throw makes, and best free throw percentage), but the ‘Tide has still lost five times.

All five of Alabama’s losses have come to top-28 NET teams (Ohio State, Clemson, Creighton, Arizona, and Purdue), but they have scored 98 or more points in 5 of their 8 wins and won 7 of those 8 by more than 20 points.

That offense is spearheaded by Mark Sears who leads the conference in scoring (on elite efficiency) and dishes out almost 4 assists per contest, as well.

The defense in Tuscaloosa hasn’t been great. ‘Bama is last in the SEC in scoring defense, second-to-last in field goal percentage allowed, and last in free throws allowed.

Alabama's record needs some work to enter into Tournament "lock" status, but the Crimson Tide is good enough that no one should worry about that too much. If the defense can improve a bit, a 4th-straight March Madness inclusion will happen, though, another 16-2 season (2020-2021 and 2022-2023) feels extremely unlikely.