This week the Southeastern Conference released its league schedule for the upcoming basketball season, and here is a look at Georgia’s slate:
— Georgia Basketball (@UGABasketball) August 19, 2015
The first thing any SEC basketball fan should look for during the initial glance of his team’s schedule is how many times they have to play Kentucky. In Georgia’s case, the Dawgs only play the Cats once in 2016, and even though the game is at Rupp, facing Calipari’s bunch one time in a year is definitely a blessing. While playing Kentucky twice does help to shore up the old RPI, it’s not as helpful for the conference record.
The Dawgs have two games with Florida, Missouri, South Carolina, Mississippi, and Auburn. Other than Ole Miss, all of those aforementioned teams finished 2015 with sub – .500 SEC records. In Bruce Pearl’s second season, Auburn should be better; however, Florida will probably be slightly worse as they try to learn how to survive without legendary coach Billy Donovan. Mizzu and the Gamecocks should continue to thrive in their roles as league bottom-feeders.
UGA truly won the scheduling lottery this go round as they only have one game against Kentucky, LSU, Arkansas, Texas A&M and Vanderbilt, all of whom were listed in Joe Lunardi’s initial Bracketology (along with Georgia). Of course, any NCAA Tournament predictions made in August need to be taken with several grains of salt, especially considering that the teams haven’t even had an official practice yet. However, obviously those SEC teams are the ones that Lunardi anticipates being the strength of the conference, and it’s kind of amazing that Coach Mark Fox only has to game plan for each of them just once (until the SEC tournament).
With Georgia’s returning veteran backcourt, the Dawgs have an excellent chance to finish in the top four of the league in 2016, especially if J.J. Frazier will just stop driving.