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Stating The Obvious: Road Wins In The SEC Are Darn Hard To Come By

When it comes to college basketball, the road is no place to be.  Especially in the SEC.

Just a few facts:


* There have been 39 SEC basketball games played so far this season.  The home team has won 28 of them.

* That 28-11 record equals a 71.7 winning percentage.

* Of the league’s road warriors, Kentucky stands at a perfect 4-0 away from Rupp Arena.  UK is also ranked #1 in the nation.

* The next best teams in the league are Florida and Vanderbilt and they’re 4-1 on the road.  The Gators, Commodores and Wildcats account for eight of the SEC’s road victories this season.

* The worst teams in the SEC are South Carolina and Georgia.  The Gamecocks have already lost two home games (to Vanderbilt and Florida) and the Bulldogs have dropped three (to Alabama, Ole Miss and Kentucky).


What’s that tell us?  That the really, really good teams can win on the road while only the really, really bad teams struggle at home.  The seven teams in between?  Give a big advantage to whoever’s playing in front of their hometown fans.


School
Overall SEC Record
SEC Home Record
SEC Road Record
Kentucky
7-0
3-0
4-0
Florida
5-1
3-0
2-1
Vanderbilt
5-1
3-1
2-0
Miss. State
4-3
3-0
1-3
Ole Miss
4-3
3-1
1-2
Arkansas
3-3
3-0
0-3
Alabama
3-4
2-1
1-3
Tennessee
2-4
2-1
0-3
LSU
2-5
2-1
0-4
Auburn
2-5
2-1
0-4
Georgia
1-5
1-3
0-2
S. Carolina
1-5
1-2
0-3



So how does the homcourt advantage in basketball compare to the homefield advantage in SEC football?  This past season — excluding the neutral site game between Florida and Georgia played in Jacksonville — the home team won 28 of 47 football games.  That 28-19 record equals a 59.5 winning percentage.

In basketball, the home team wins more than seven out of every 10 games played.  in football, the home team wins a hair less than six out of 10.

Why?

Road teams in both sports have their routines shaken up.  And road teams in both sports might tire from travel.

But we believe there are two factors that play a big role in making hoops tougher than football on visitors:


1.  Shooting backgrounds and rims — Shooters have different sight lines and get different bounces off stiffer/softer rims than they are used to in their own arenas.

2.  The crowd is right on top of the action — Both players and officials can feed off of the energy in a building.  It’s human nature to want to feel support.  For players, their effort levels almost always go up at home.  Officials are human, too.  Start noticing how much more demonstrative many refs become when they call a block or a charge against a visitor while smack in the middle of a home team run. 


In football, a stadium is a stadium.  A different “passing backdrop” won’t influence a quarterback, a receiver or a defensive back.

Also, the fans are further away from the action.  The crowd is bigger and louder, but there’s a lot more space between the guy in Section X and the player (or the official) way down on the field of play.

Whatever the reason, there’s no debating the facts.  It’s a lot harder to win an SEC road game in basketball than it is in football.  And it’s not easy in football.

 


2 comments
Maximinus
Maximinus

Vandy is actually 2-0 on the road. Their only loss was at home to MSU.

Fayettechill14
Fayettechill14

As much as I was protesting the debacle in Tuscaloosa on Saturday, with poor Razorback forward Devonta Abron getting his head knocked off repeatedly with no call, I had to settle down a bit when I recalled all of the generous calls the Hogs got in their 98-88 win over Mississippi State in Fayetteville a couple of weeks before.

Officials are way to juvenile, drawn in by the crowd way too easily. It's gotten worse over the last few years and has made winning on the road in the SEC a near impossibility. I have no doubt in my mind that the Hogs will go 7-1 or 8-0, but manage just 2-6 AT BEST on the road. That's the frustrating state of college basketball in this day.

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