We’ve reached the quarterfinal round of the SEC Tournament and the top four seeds in the conference are set to take the floor for the first time at Amalie Arena in Tampa. The day will tip off with the top-seeded Auburn Tigers meeting the Texas A&M Aggies and will continue throughout the afternoon and evening until the field is set for Saturday’s semifinal round.
No. 8 Texas A&M vs No. 1 Auburn: 12 p.m. ET, ESPN
Point Spread: Auburn -9
Point Total: 140
Auburn got to enjoy a double-bye as the SEC regular season champion and will begin a three-day stretch where it hopes to cut down the nets on Sunday and possibly play its way back into a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.
The Tigers will face a feisty Texas A&M team that is desperately trying to will its way off the bubble. The Aggies survived an 83-80 overtime thriller against Florida on Thursday by way of a last second three by Hassan Diarra. TAMU was beaten down by 17 the last time it faced Auburn on February 12.
The pick: Auburn -9
No. 5 LSU vs. No. 4 Arkansas: 2 p.m. ET, ESPN
Point Spread: Arkansas -2
Point Total: 139
Arkansas won five straight games towards the end of the regular season and nearly overcame a 24-point deficit in a 78-74 loss to Tennessee last week. The Razorbacks took both regular season games against LSU, both games coming within single digits.
LSU handled its business in its second-round matchup against Missouri on Thursday, winning the battle of the Tigers 76-68. Tari Eason led off the bench with 19 points and five rebounds.
The pick: LSU +2
No. 10 Mississippi State vs. No. 2 Tennessee: 6 p.m. ET, SEC Network
Point Spread: Tennessee -6.5
Point Total: 131
Tennessee was able to secure the two-seed in the tournament with a four-game winning streak to close the regular season. The Volunteers won the prior matchup against Mississippi State 72-63.
Mississippi State stumbled a bit to end the regular season but managed to beat down South Carolina 73-51 in Tampa on Thursday. The Bulldogs grabbed control of this one in the backend of the first half and put the clamps on late, limiting the Gamecocks to just five points in the final 10 minutes.
The pick: Over 131
No. 11 Vanderbilt vs. No. 3 Kentucky: 8 p.m. ET, SEC Network
Point Spread: Kentucky -12
Point Total: 143
Kentucky was in the running for at least a share of the regular season title heading into the final weekend, but came up just short. Posting a 25-6 record, the Wildcats have been led by Wooden Award candidate Oscar Tshiebwe, who has averaged 17.3 points and 15.3 rebounds per game.
Vanderbilt flipped a 10-point halftime deficit into a victory on Thursday, upsetting No. 6 Alabama 82-76. Scotty Pippen Jr. dropped 25 points and seven rebounds in the win. The Commodores lost both matchups to the Wildcats during the regular season; by 12 in Lexington and by seven in Nashville.
The pick: Vanderbilt +12
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