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Anchor Drop, January 5, 2019: SEC Opener Edition

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Vanderbilt hosts Ole Miss tonight to open the SEC schedule.

NCAA Basketball: Vanderbilt at Mississippi Spruce Derden-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning.

The Vanderbilt Commodores open SEC play tonight against the Ole Miss Rebels at Memorial Gym. Game time is 7:30 PM CT, and the game will be televised on the SEC Network.

We went over yesterday why this game and the next one at Georgia are important; Ole Miss enters tonight’s game with a 10-2 record and on a seven-game winning streak. I’ll grant you that none of those wins have come against teams ranked in the KenPom top 100, and Ole Miss has only beaten one such team all season — a 78-70 win over Baylor on November 23. (For the record, Vanderbilt has three such wins, over USC, Liberty, and Arizona State.)

This is a very winnable game, but Ole Miss appears to be greatly improved from last year’s 12-20 team, kind of like Vanderbilt now that I think about it. These won’t be the two worst teams in the SEC this season.

Tweet of the Day

(Bill Walton is hilarious on his own; Dave Pasch’s willingness to play the straight man is what makes it awesome.)

Off the West End

Well, former #1 recruit Justin Fields is officially transferring to Ohio State. On the other side, Georgia’s losing a bunch of players to the NFL Draft. Man, I wonder who draws Georgia in Week 1 when they’ll be breaking in a whole bunch of new starters...

West Virginia is hiring Neal Brown from Troy as its new football coach. You almost feel like Houston would have done better to just hire Brown themselves instead of hiring Holgorsen and letting West Virginia get Brown.

UCLA boosters want Rick Pitino. Booster hires always work so well. Bill Walton, on the other hand, wants Barack Obama to be UCLA’s basketball coach.

Bad Gambling Advice

Wherein I pick all the SEC basketball games, for your amusement.

Kentucky at Alabama (+4)

Georgia (+14) at Tennessee

Arkansas at Texas A&M (-3)

South Carolina at Florida (-12.5)

Ole Miss at Vanderbilt (-2.5)