The 2016 SEC Championship will feature the league's top two squads as Kentucky faces Texas A&M.
UK is in the title game after a thrilling win over Georgia. While not quite the cakewalk many expected, the Cats took the Dawgs' best shot and still came away with a 93-80 win. It was anything but easy as Georgia led by as many as eight in the second half before the Cats went on a 30-12 run to pull away and escape with a 93-80 win.
As for A&M, their suffocation of LSU was anything but thrilling as the lifeless Tigers failed to show up while the Aggies cruised to a 71-38 win. Texas A&M, winners of eight straight, haven't reached a conference tourney championship since losing to Texas 22 years ago in the Southwest Conference, but they'll look to sweep the SEC after claiming a share of the regular-season crown with Kentucky.
This will be a rematch of what was a gut-wrenching loss for the Cats at A&M. The game went into overtime, and in the extra session, both teams would trade blows until it appeared UK would pull it out after getting a stop with 10 seconds left leading 76-75.
But as Isaac Humphries pulled down the rebound, he was fouled and slammed the ball down in celebration before being called for a technical foul. That effectively cost UK the game as the Aggies escaped with a 79-77 win.
Here is everything you'll need for Round 2 of Kentucky vs Texas A&M.
Kentucky Wildcats (25-8, 15-5 in SEC) at Texas A&M Aggies (26-7, 15-5 in SEC)
When: March 13, 2016
Location: Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee
Game Time: 1 p.m. ET
Online Stream: Watch ESPN
Radio: UK Radio Network with Tom Leach and Mike Pratt (info and affiliates)
Odds: UK opened as a 3-point favorite, per Vegas Insider.
Projected A&M Starters
#11 G - Anthony Collins, 6-1, 175 lbs, Sr.
#21 G - Alex Caruso, 6-5, 186 lbs, Sr.
#23 G - Danuel House, 6-7, 212 lbs, Sr.
#12 F - Jalen Jones, 6-7, 220 lbs. Sr.
#34 F - Tyler Davis, 6-10, 265 lbs, Fr.
Projected UK Starters
#3 G - Tyler Ulis, 5-9, 160 lbs, So.
#13 G - Isaiah Briscoe, 6-3, 202 lbs, Fr.
#23 G - Jamal Murray, 6-4, 207 lbs, Fr.
#35 F - Derek Willis, 6-9, 220 lbs, Jr.
#22 F - Alex Poythress, 6-8, 230 lbs, Sr.
That's the key to this game after Kentucky had a win taken away from them at A&M in the regular season. It was as gut-wrenching of a defeat as UK has suffered this season, and you can bet they'd love nothing more than to get revenge by beating the Aggies for the SEC Championship.
But A&M isn't just going to lay down and let UK run over them They've won eight straight and are starting to look like a dangerous team in the NCAA Tournament. They've also got a good frontcourt led by rising star Tyler Davis that should do a lot of damage to the Cats' thin frontline.
This will be a fun and competitive game to watch that probably will have no impact on either team's seeding, but they could care less as they just want to win a league title when this game tips off. I see the Cats pulling off a close win that comes down to the final minutes, but Ulis and Murray prove to be too much for the Aggies to handle.
Final Score: Kentucky 73, Texas A&M 69