The Kentucky Wildcats are heading into the new year at 10-2, and are preparing to start conference play this Saturday against the Florida Gators in Gainesville.
To this point, the Cats have solid wins over Miami and North Carolina, which is also paired with a home loss to UNC-Wilmington. Add those alongside the lack of Quad I opportunities, and bracketologists have not been extremely high on this Kentucky squad to this point.
It appears that is starting to shift, as Joe Lunardi has moved UK to a 3-seed in his updated ESPN Bracketology.
In his latest update, Lunardi has the Cats headed to the South Region with a first-round matchup against 14-seed Purdue Fort Wayne. The top seeds in the region are No. 1 Houston and No. 2 Clemson.
Outside of Kentucky, the bracket guru has eight other SEC schools making the bracket, including Tennessee (2-seed), Auburn (5-seed), Texas A&M (6-seed), Alabama (6-seed), Ole Miss (8-seed), Mississippi State (10-seed), Florida (10-seed), and South Carolina (11-seed). Nine teams making the field is the most of any other conference.
Kentucky has plenty of opportunities to push even further in the coming weeks with several Quad I matchups on deck, including this weekend’s matchup in Gainesville.
Will the Cats climb up to the 2-seed line by the next update? Let’s hope so.
2024 NCAA Tournament Bracketology https://t.co/raCbQfMrSF. The new year brings a new team to the top line, but it's hard to call defending champ and five-time NCAA winner UConn a newcomer.— Joe Lunardi (@ESPNLunardi) January 2, 2024