Five SEC basketball teams crack the Top 25

 Billy Jones   in Basketball

Kentucky, Alabama, Tennessee, Auburn and Arkansas all made the AP Top 25. 

Jahvon Quinerly photo courtesy of Alabama athletics.

The Associated Press released its Top 25 ahead of the 2021-22 college basketball season, and it featured five Southeastern Conference teams: Kentucky, Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee and Auburn. 

Kentucky was voted No. 10 in the initial rankings. A trio of young freshmen will lead the Wildcats this season, and much like others, it will be a matter of coach John Capilari’s ability to develop young talent if this team wants to go far in March.

Defending SEC champion Alabama checked in at 14th. The Crimson Tide will return two of its top five scorers this year, which means they should still be able to compete for another pair of SEC championships.

Coming off a strong season, Eric Musselman’s Arkansas is ranked 16th. He took the Razorbacks to the Elite Eight last season as the sky will be the limit for his third year in charge. 

Tennessee is ranked 19th. The Vols will undoubtedly be out for revenge after a disappointing exit during the first game of last year’s tournament. After another solid recruiting year, Tennessee is poised for a strong season.

Bruce Pearl’s Auburn will enter this season as the 22nd-ranked team after a disappointing 2020-21 season. The Tigers reloaded with a group of transfers that includes Walker Kessler (North Carolina) and K.D. Johnson (Georgia).