- The 2021 SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament begins on March 10th at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee
- The championship game will be at 1:00 pm ET on Sunday, March 14th (ESPN)
- Read on to find out all the trends, odds, picks and best bets for the 2021 SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament
The 2021 SEC Tournament will be played at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee, from March 10th to 13th, with the championship game on Sunday at 1:00 pm ET. The winner will receive an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament
The Kentucky Wildcats have dominated the this tournament’s recent history, winning four of the last five. The only other school to win one in that span is the Auburn Tigers, who will not be participating in this year’s event due to self-imposed playoff sanctions.
The worst seed to win this tournament in the last ten years was the Tigers in 2019 when they captured the crown as a #5 seed. Outside of that year, one, #2 and #3 seeds litter the list of winners over the last decade. This tournament was not played in 2020 due to COVID-19.
2021 SEC Tournament Odds
|Ole Miss (6)||+2500|
|Mississippi State (9)||+6000|
|South Carolina (11)||+15000|
|Texas A&M (12)||+20000|
Odds as of March 7th at FanDuel.
Alabama Deserves the Top Seed
The Alabama Crimson Tide were the regular-season SEC champions for the first time in almost 20 years earning them the #1 seed in the tournament. They only lost twice in conference play this season. It might be time to acknowledge the Crimson Tide for being more than a football school at this point.
Basketball School ???? ????#RollTide | #BlueCollarBasketball pic.twitter.com/P7NhfWIBNd
— Alabama Men’s Basketball (@AlabamaMBB) March 3, 2021
Naismith Player of the Year semifinalist Herb Jones leads a tenacious Crimson Tide defense that is currently ranked third in the country in efficiency according to KenPom. They play at the tenth-fastest pace in the country, which leads to higher-scoring games, but make no mistake, the defense is legit.
Offensively Alabama is 24th in the country averaging 79.2 points per game so they take care of business on both ends of the floor which makes them a tough out.
Multiple Teams Can Win This Tournament
The SEC is far from a one-trick pony so bettors can’t be quick to crown the Crimson Tide without exploring other options. This conference has five teams in KenPom’s top 30 so the final semifinals will likely be contended by heavyweights. Three other teams (LSU, Arkansas, Tennessee) will enjoy the same double-bye as Alabama making their path very similar to the Tide’s.
Two road Ws. Let’s take one more look back at all the highlights ⤵️#GoGators pic.twitter.com/uhnVtmZGE7
— Florida Gators Men’s Basketball (@GatorsMBK) March 3, 2021
One team without the coveted double bye that can still win is the Florida Gators. KenPom has them ranked 27th in the nation and they are battle-tested after having played the nation’s 24th-toughest schedule. They’ve answered the bell after losing last season’s leading scorer Keyontae Johnson by going 9-6 in conference. The Gators are top 40 in the country in both offensive and defensive efficiency so they are an intriguing bet at +550.
Nasty finish ???? pic.twitter.com/eB7BOuzSab
— Tennessee Basketball (@Vol_Hoops) February 25, 2021
With late season losses to Kentucky and Auburn, Tennessee did themselves no favors heading in the tournament. The trio of Jaden Springer, Keon Johnson, and Victor Bailey give the Volunteers a respectable offense to go along with the sixth-best defense in the land. They beat both Kansas and Arkansas in January and took out Florida on the last day of the regular season; they have what it takes to beat good teams. At +460, they are certainly worth considering.
One thing ever bettor needs to consider when betting postseason tournaments is form. There isn’t one team in this entire field that is in better current form than the Arkansas Razorbacks. They haven’t lost since January which is made more impressive when considering they beat Alabama, Kentucky and Florida in the month of February.
Roll that tape. pic.twitter.com/LK8TN3d4fW
— HAWWWWWWWWWWWGS ???? (@RazorbackMBB) March 3, 2021
Picked to finish sixth in the conference by coaches in the preseason, the Razorbacks have exceeded all expectations. Only four teams in the country score more points on a per game basis and only 12 are more efficient defensively on an opponent-adjusted basis. There is not a better team when combining offense, defense, and recent form in this tournament. They also play at a breakneck pace which has been an issue all year for the other SEC teams. At +300, they are my bet to win this tournament.
The pick: Arkansas Razorbacks (+300)