By Jeff Goodman
SEC Offseason Roundup
Alabama – The Crimson Tide will play in the Puerto Rico Tip-Off and also have non-conference games against Georgetown (12-1), vs. Kansas State (12-17) in Kansas City, vs. Oklahoma State (12-21) in Birmingham and at Georgia Tech (1-3). Jason Carter (Chipola JC) and Kendall Durant (NAIA in Texas) both transferred out of the program.
Arkansas – Mike Anderson brought his staff with him from Missouri: Melvin Watkins, Matt Zimmerman, T.J. Cleveland and Jeff Daniels (director of basketball operations). The Razorbacks will play at Uconn (12-3), at Oklahoma (12-10) and vs. Michigan (1-21). Rotnei Clarke (Butler), Jeff Peterson (Florida State) and Glenn Bryant (Eastern Michigan) all transferred out of the program.
Auburn – The Tigers will play in the Diamond Head Classic in Hawaii (12-22/25) and also have non-league contests at Seton Hall (12-2) and vs. South Florida (12-15). Earnest Ross (Missouri) and Ty Armstrong left the program while Varez Ward (Texas) and Noel Johnson (Clemson) are both eligible this season.
Florida – Billy Donovan had a major shake-up with his staff as Larry Shyatt took the head job at Wyoming, Richard Pitino returned to Louisville and Rob Lanier went back to Texas as the associate head coach. Donovan’s new staff consists of former Arkansas head man John Pelphrey, ex-St. John’s head coach Norm Roberts and Matt McCall – who was with the Gators in an administrative role. Florida will play in the five-team Global Sports Shootout, along with Ohio State, Jackson State, North Florida and Wright State. The Gators will play at Ohio State (11-15) and also have non-league games at Syracuse (12-2), vs. Arizona (12-7), vs. Texas A&M in Sunrise (12-17), vs. Florida State (12-22) and at Rutgers (12-29). Mike Rosario (Rutgers) is eligible this season after sitting out a year ago.
Georgia – The Bulldogs are in the CBE Classic (12-21/21) and also have non-conference contests at Xavier (11-25), at Colorado (11-28), vs. Cincinnati (12-2), vs. Georgia Tech (12-6) and at USC (12-17).
Kentucky – The Wildcats will play in the Hall of Fame event (11-19/20) and also will face Kansas in the Champions Classic (11-15) in NYC. John Calipari’s team’s non-conference slate includes contests vs. St. John’s (12-1), vs. UNC (12-3), at Indiana (12-10) and vs. Louisville (12-31). Ryan Harrow transferred in from N.C. State and Twany Beckham becomes eligible this season after transferring from Mississippi State last year.
LSU – The Tigers took a trip back in May to Italy. Lynn Nance retired and Nick Robinson slid over into his role as an assistant. LSU will play in the Charleston Classic (11-17/20) and also has non-league games at Rutgers (12-3), vs. Marquette (12-19) and against Virginia (1-2 or 3). Three players – Aaron Dotson (Utah), Garrett Green (San Diego State) and Matt Derenbecker – left the program. Justin Hamilton is eligible this season after transferring in from Iowa State.
Mississippi – Andy Kennedy’s staff completely turned over. Mike White got the head gig at Louisiana Tech while Owen Miller and Torrey Ward are also gone. Kennedy replaced them with former FIU head coach Segrgio Ruoco, Al Pinkins and he also moved up Bill Armstrong. Robi Coker took Armstrong’s spot as the director of basketball operations. The Rebels will play Miami (11-25) at home, at DePaul (12-1), at Penn State (12-4), at Southern Miss (12-17) and at Dayton (12-30), Donald Williams, Will Bogan (Valparaiso), Trevor Gaskins (Louisiana Tech) and Isaiah Massey (Louisiana Tech) all left while Murphy Holloway (South Carolina) returned and may be eligible this year. Jelan Kendrick (Memphis) will be eligible after sitting out last season.
Mississippi State - The Bulldogs are currently on a trip to Amsterdam, Brussels and Paris and will also play in the Coaches vs. Cancer event (11-17/18). Rick Stansbury’s team will face West Virginia (12-3), Baylor in Dallas (12-28) and Utah State at home (12-31). Arnett Moultrie is eligible after sitting out last season following a transfer from UTEP.
South Carolina – Orlando Early (N.C. State) left and Darrin Horn bumped up Cypheus Bunton and also promoted Justin Phelps to director of basketball operations. The Gamecocks will play in the Las Vegas Invitational (11-25/26) and also face Providence (12-1) at home, go to Clemson (12-4) and play Ohio State (12-17) at home. Ramon Galloway (La Salle), Murphy Holloway (Ole Miss) and Stephen Spinella transferred out.
Tennessee – New coach Cuonzo Martin brought Jon Harris and Kent Williams from Missouri State and added Tracy Webster. He also kept Houston Fancher as the director of basketball operations. The Vols will play in the Maui Invitational and also a non-conference schedule that includes games against Pittsburgh (12-3), at Memphis (1-4) and vs. UConn (12-21).
Vanderbilt – King Rice left for the head job at Monmouth and was replaced by David Cason (Tulsa). The Commodores will play in the Legends Classic in New Jersey and also have non-league games vs. Xavier (11-28), at Louisville (12-2) and at Marquette (12-29). Andre Walker (Xavier) and Darshaun McClellan (Louisiana-Lafayette) both transferred with one year left of eligibility.
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