SEC basketball bubble watch

Tennessee forward Jarnell Stokes, left, and Missouri forward Torren Jones (24) grapple for a rebound during the first half of an NCAA basketball game in Knoxville, Tenn., Saturday, March 8, 2014. (AP Photo/Knoxville News Sentinel, Adam Lau) Show caption
Tennessee forward Jarnell Stokes, left, and Missouri forward Torren Jones (24) grapple for a rebound during the first half of an NCAA basketball game in Knoxville, Tenn., Saturday, March 8, 2014. (AP Photo/Knoxville News Sentinel, Adam Lau)

Tennessee

RPI: 44

SOS: 25

vs. top 100: 7-8

Good wins: Virginia, Xavier

Bad losses: UTEP, Texas A&M, Vanderbilt

Outlook: The Volunteers are living off a blowout of ACC champion Virginia that they notched in late December. Cuonzo Martin’s squad went 0-3 against Kentucky and Florida. On Saturday, they won a bubble battle against Missouri, which might be enough for now to nudge them into the field of 68. A quarterfinal victory might sew it up.

Arkansas

RPI: 62

SOS: 84

vs. top 100: 9-9

Good wins: Kentucky, SMU, Minnesota

Bad losses: Alabama, Texas A&M

Outlook: Arkansas was coasting toward Selection Sunday after sweeping Kentucky and playing well before its season finale at Alabama. Then the Razorbacks lost by 25 points. There aren’t many bad losses, but a weaker nonconference slate (No. 204) doesn’t offer much supporting evidence. A couple of wins would help their cause.

Missouri

RPI: 52

SOS: 76

vs. top 100: 7-8

Good wins: UCLA, Tennessee

Bad losses: Vanderbilt, Alabama

Outlook: The Tigers limped down the stretch, going 5-5 in the past 10 games. Mizzou is getting a lot of mileage out of a December victory over UCLA. They went 0-2 against Florida and Kentucky and split with the Vols, so it’s hard to see Frank Haith’s squad getting in unless its stay in Atlanta lasts until the weekend.

Georgia

RPI: 73

SOS: 70

vs. top 100: 6-7

Good wins: Missouri, Arkansas

Bad losses: Vanderbilt, Georgia Tech, Auburn

Outlook: The Bulldogs are likely bound for the NIT. But, as the No. 3 seed, they’re on the side of the bracket that keeps them away from Florida. Who knows? If Georgia can get a couple of wins — say, an upset of Kentucky — Mark Fox’s team could mimic the Dream Dawgs run of 2008.

LSU

RPI: 74

SOS: 72

vs. top 100: 4-9

Good wins: Kentucky, Saint Joseph’s, Missouri

Bad losses: Alabama, Texas A&M, Rhode Island

Outlook: Right now, the focus is simply holding onto an NIT bid, but a draw featuring potential games against Alabama and Kentucky is workable. A run to the title would be needed to get within shouting distance of the NCAA tournament bubble — and a second-round loss may end their postseason hopes altogether.