The college basketball season is officially over, but there’s still plenty of exciting things on the horizon around the SEC.
The action is starting to heat up in baseball, and more spring football is on the way as well.
Let’s roll through everything that you need to know in this week’s Around the SEC.
Vanderbilt hires Bryce Drew as its new basketball coach
Commodore fans were getting antsy, but Bryce Drew was officially introduced as Vanderbilt’s new head coach on Wednesday.
Drew’s success at Valparaiso allowed him the opportunity to land the job in Nashville, as he compiled a 124-49 record as head coach of the Crusaders. He also won four regular season titles and landed his team in the NCAA tournament in two of his five seasons at the helm.
You can read yesterday’s article for more thoughts on the beginning of the Drew era at Vandy.
More coaching changes in the SEC
Although Drew was the only new head coach in the conference, there have been several important changes on staffs throughout the SEC.
Vanderbilt assistant Tom Richardson will join Kevin Stallings’ staff at Pittsburgh, while Adam Cohen, who worked under Stallings for a few years, left for a spot on Jerod Haase’s staff at Stanford.
Meanwhile, SEC regular season co-champion Texas A&M has seen a couple of huge changes on their bench. After associate head coach Rick Stansbury bolted for the head coaching job at Western Kentucky, fellow assistant Kyle Keller also left to take over at Stephen F. Austin.
It has also been reported that former Arkansas head coach John Pelphrey is interviewing for a spot on Avery Johnson’s staff at Alabama.
Lots of players headed to the NBA draft
Here’s an updated list of SEC players that have reportedly declared for the 2016 NBA draft. Those that haven’t signed with an agent can still return to school if they choose to.
NOTE: Kentucky head coach John Calipari has stated that his entire team will declare for the draft, but we’ll just list the ones most likely to enter.
- Tyler Ulis (Kentucky) *signing with agent
- Skal Labissiere (Kentucky) *signing with agent
- Jamaal Murray (Kentucky) *signing with agent
- Ben Simmons (LSU) *signing with agent
- Tim Quarterman (LSU)
- Malik Newman (Mississippi State)
- Wade Baldwin (Vanderbilt)
Title race heating up in SEC baseball
We’ve undoubtedly seen quite the season thus far in baseball, as teams like Florida, South Carolina, and Vanderbilt all continue to play very well.
The Gators remain at the top of the conference with a 28-3 record overall and a 7-2 mark in the league. They’ll get the current leader in the West division – Mississippi State – for a series in Gainesville this weekend.
The Commodores took a big series over the Gamecocks at Hawkins Field last weekend, and will now prepare for a huge trip to Baton Rouge to meet LSU.
South Carolina will attempt to get back on track with a home series against Tennessee, with the Volunteers hoping to get on the right side of the win/loss column in the conference after a 3-6 start.
A few other series to watch this upcoming weekend are Alabama at Kentucky and Arkansas at Ole Miss.
Spring game season is here
Vanderbilt was the first to hold its spring game, but now things really crank up with plenty of games in the near future.
Florida will play its spring contest on Friday at 7 PM ET, with the game being shown on the SEC Network.
South Carolina, Auburn, and Texas A&M will host their spring games on Saturday, and those will also be shown on the SEC Network at various times throughout the day.