The fifth annual SEC/Big East Challenge is sure to be a thrilling affair.
Headed into the tournament, there have been 16 matchups so far, with the series knotted up at eight games apiece.
This season, the Challenge will feature a whopping nine top-25 teams, including No. 1 Kentucky, No. 4 Syracuse, No. 6 Louisville, No. 8 Connecticut, No. 10 Florida, No. 12 Alabama, No. 17 Pittsburgh, No. 20 Vanderbilt and No. 21 Mississippi State.
The two biggest games should be Florida at Syracuse and Vanderbilt at Louisville, although Georgetown can never be counted out, currently on the bubble of the top 25 after a 5-1 start and a win over then-No. 8 Memphis on Nov. 21.
Syracuse has a well-rounded group that is led by senior forward Kris Joseph. The Orange are averaging 83.0 points per game this season, 15th in the nation, but have yet to play a ranked team.
Florida has an even better offense, led by junior guard Kenny Boynton. The Gators are third in points per game, eighth in rebounds per game and 11th in assists per game.
As for Louisville, the Cardinals have gotten off to a 6-0 start. They don't generally score a lot of points, but their strength lies in an impressive defense that absolutely smothers opponents. The Cardinals are giving up under 50 points per game this season.
Vanderbilt, on the other hand, has shown the ability to rack up points behind guard John Jenkins and forward Jeffery Taylor, which should make this a good matchup.
Here's how you can catch the action:
All Times EST
|Thursday, Dec. 1 ||Providence at South Carolina ||7:00 p.m.||ESPNU|
|Thursday, Dec. 1||St. John's at Kentucky ||7:30 p.m.||ESPN2|
|Thursday, Dec. 1||Ole Miss at DePaul ||9:00 p.m.||ESPNU|
|Thursday, Dec. 1||Georgetown at Alabama ||9:30 p.m.||ESPN2|
|Friday, Dec. 2 ||Florida at Syracuse ||6:30 p.m.||ESPN|
|Friday, Dec. 2||Cincinnati at Georgia ||7:00 p.m.||ESPNU|
|Friday, Dec. 2||Vanderbilt at Louisville|| 8:30 p.m. ||ESPN|
|Friday, Dec. 2||Auburn at Seton Hall || 9:00 p.m. ||ESPNU|
|Saturday, Dec. 3 ||Arkansas at Connecticut || 3:15 p.m. ||ESPN|
|Saturday, Dec. 3||Pittsburgh at Tennessee || 5:15 p.m. ||ESPN|
|Saturday, Dec. 3||LSU at Rutgers || 7:00 p.m. ||ESPNU|
|Saturday, Dec. 3||West Virginia at Mississippi State || 9:00 p.m. ||ESPNU|
Live Stream: ESPN3