[Player Kira Lewis] Jr. (Alabama) — The 6-foot-2, 165-pound sophomore showed out in back-to-back wins against Vanderbilt and Kansas State in which he averaged 21 points and seven rebounds. In addition, he tallies four assists, two steals and 1.5 blocks. In the Crimson Tide’s last matchup against K-State, Lewis Jr. (pictured) led the team with 26 points, seven rebounds, three assists, two steals and a career-high three blocks. So far, he is ranked first for Bama in points (16.6), assists (4.8) and steals (1.7): A stellar, versatile guard who plays with great tenacity on both sides of the rock.
[Player Nick Richards] (Kentucky) — The skyscraper! Standing at 6-foot-11, 247 pounds, the junior from Jamaica averaged a double-double with 22.5 points and 11 rebounds in two straight victories against Georgia and at No. 18 Texas Tech. He also averaged 3.5 blocks in these matchups. Richards tied his career-high against the Red Raiders with his 25-point performance. This was accompanied by 14 rebounds which was enough to register his eighth double-double of the season.
[Player Trendon Watford] (LSU) — Here, we got a real stud freshman at 6-foot-9, 235 pounds. The Tigers forward averaged 18 points, six rebounds, two assists and a block in consecutive wins against Florida and Texas. Watford pumped in a career-high 22 points and made a pair of free throws late in the game to secure the win at Texas.
Tennessee — The Vols have now dropped back-to-back games against No. 3 Kansas and Texas A&M. Don’t get me wrong, losing to the third-best team in the country is not a bad beat in any way. But at the same time, just three players were able to put up points for Tenn. in the first half and they also turned the ball over 15 times. Against the Aggies, once again this team struggled with turning the ball over as they did 13 times in this matchup. The Volunteers now enter a little road trip as they will travel to take on Miss. St. and Alabama.
[Player Kerry Blackshear Jr.] (Florida) — In his last two efforts against No.1 Baylor and Vanderbilt, he has under-performed in scoring (9),(13) and rebounding (4),(7) according to his season averages of 14.4 PPG and 8.4 RPG. These two statistics in which he leads the team in, has clearly impacted this team in a negative fashion when glancing at their last two matchups. It is understood that expectations are high as he was projected to be this season’s SEC POTY, but he’ll need to find his rhythm back if he wants to remain in contention.
Top 5 Defensive Teams
1. Tennessee — Leading the conference in scoring defense, they’ve allowed 1199 points in 20 games this season in which their opponent’s have averaged 60 points per game. The Vols also rank first in the SEC in blocks with a total of 122, averaging 6.1 BKPG.
2. Missouri — The Tigers come in at second in the SEC for scoring defense where they’ve let up 1252 points in 20 games thus bringing their opponent’s scoring average to 62.6 PPG. Despite being third-to-last in the conference, this defensive definitely pulls its weight.
3. Texas A&M — Buzz Williams’s team has let up an average of 63.2 PPG so far this season, good enough for third in the conference. In 19 games, the Aggies have had 1200 points scored on them.
4. Arkansas — The Razorbacks lead the SEC in turnovers forced with 342 total on an average of 17.1 forced turnovers per game. They’re ranked fourth in the conference in scoring defense in which they’ve given up an average of 64 PPG resulting in a total of 1279 points against.
5. Kentucky — The 13th-best team in the nation ranks first in the conference in defensive rebounds with 568 total boards averaging a whopping 28.4 RPG. They also rank fifth in the conference in scoring defense with an average of 65 PPG for a total of 1300 points against them.