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Around The SEC East – 2/27/09

Here’s what’s making headlines around the SEC’s East Division this morning:

Vandy:  Kevin Stallings’ team has been inconsistent on the offensive end all year long.  Things came to a head at Georgia, where the Commodores shot just 31% from the floor and hit only 16 shots from the floor.  One player believes Vandy gets in too big of a rush on offense, rather than woking to find a good shot.

Vandy:  The disappointing season has taken a toll on Vandy’s ticket office.  Tickets are still available for the ‘Dores’ final two home games.

UT:  The football Vols are moving a couple of tight ends to new positions prior to the start of spring practice.  Aaron Douglas is being shifted to offensive tackle, while Brandon Warren will be used as a receiver in Lane Kiffin’s offense.

UT:  Of the five new players in Tennessee’s 10-man rotation, freshman Scotty Hopson looks like he’s taking the lead in terms of development.

UT & USC:  Next Thursday’s game between Tennessee and South Carolina — which could determine the East champion — will be carried on ESPN to a national audience.

USC:  ESPN’s crew for the game will be Brent Musberger and Bob Knight.  And the Gamecocks could have their own SEC title and NCAA Tournament hopes in hand.

USC:  Even the television announcers seemed stunned by South Carolina’s dominance over Kentucky on Wednesday night.

USC:  “The Tennessee Effect” is being felt in the coffers of South Carolina.  Steve Spurrier’s assistants will make 17.5% more this year than last year’s assistants.  Defensive coordinator Ellis Johnson will also be paid in french fried taters.  Mmmmmm.  (Click the link, if you’ve seen “Slingblade,” you’ll understand.)

UK:  Patrick Patterson isn’t sweating all the NCAA Tournament bubble talk.  “Oh, I’m not worried about that.  My main goal is to win the SEC Tournament.  That’s all I want to do.  That’s all I’m going to concentrate on. … I’m not listening to all the analysts on ESPN.”

UK:  In fact, the team’s spirits remain somewhat high despite the blowout loss to Carolina on Wednesday.

UK:  Jodie Meeks is a finalist for National Player of the Year honors by the US Basketball Writers Association.

UK:  There’s some debate as to whether AJ Stewart has been kicked off the Kentucky basketball team or whether he’s quit the team.  But his mother says he’s still on the team… as far as she knows.

UK:  Eric Crawford of The Louisville Courier-Journal writes that while other SEC teams have been dealing with big-time blowouts as well, something about this Kentucky team doesn’t seem right.

UGA:  With the season nearing a merciful conclusion in Athens, the basketball staff working under interim coach Pete Herrmann is facing uncertain times.  Herrmann makes it clear that at 61 he wants to continue coaching somewhere.

UGA:  That somewhere probably won’t be Athens.

UGA:  When Arkansas and Georgia meet up on Wednesday (with just three conference wins between them), it probably won’t have the same feel as the last time the two team’s played… in the championship game of last year’s SEC Tournament.

UGA:  The tip time for Georgia’s season finale with South Carolina has been moved to 2pm EST on March 7th so Raycom can televise the contest.

UF:  Nick Calathes, who played with a stomach flu against LSU on Tuesday, will be key to the Gators’ chances against Tennessee on Sunday.  He says that he is feeling better.

UF:  Could the argument Calathes had with Erving Walker during the Gators’ loss to LSU be a sign of bigger chemisty woes for a team that struggles late in tight games?

UF:  Pat Dooley of The Gainesville Sun belives if things break the wrong way, the SEC could have as few as two teams in the NCAA Tournament.  Now, that’s a perfect storm of events, but it is possible.

UF:  Reserve forward Allan Chaney could be healthy enough to return form a five-game absence against Tennessee on Sunday.

UF:  Florida president Bernie Machen is happy with the job Urban Meyer is doing off-the-field with his players.  “You really haven’t seen his graduation rates yet because most of the guys were here when he got here.  Wait until you see his classes graduate.  We’ve had good success, but wait until you see his effect.”

 




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