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SEC Men's Basketball Tourney Open Thread: Georgia vs. LSU

It's the middle of a workday, but we're playing bounceyhoops. After a 15-16 regular season, and 9-9 conference record, the 8th seeded Dawgs take on the 9th seeded LSU Tigers (18-11, 9-9) for the chance to play Florida tomorrow at 1.

Let's do this one more again.
Let's do this one more again.
Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

It's already been a good week for the Dawgs, with Kentavious Caldwell-Pope winning conference Player of the Year honors, and PG Charles Mann making the All-Freshman team for the SEC. Mark Fox's squad will hope to continue that good week in Music City, as Georgia fights to continue their season one more game (and fans chant for KCP to stay one more year, which chuckdawg discusses here).

Chuck has also already given a preview of what of things in Nashville, so check that out too. LSU was Georgia's first conference win, 67-58 back in Athens on January 19. LSU has gone 9-5 since that game, so they'll be an improved club just like us.

Starters are expected to be senior Vincent Williams at the point, and he'll share minutes with Mann early, with Fox likely riding whichever is the hotter hand during the second half. Brandon Morris starts on the wing, with fellow freshman Kenny Gaines and senior Sherrard Brantley getting minutes on the wing off the bench. Donte Williams and John Florveus likely start inside, with Nemi Djurisic providing a scoring punch off the bench, and sophomores Tim Dixon and John Cannon get a couple minutes here and there (and again, if they look hot, Fox runs them out there more in the second half). KCP is our 5th starter, and may as well play all 40 minutes if he's up to it. With 19 points today, the sophomore wing will reach 1000 in his career.

LSU, and first year coach Johnny Jones (who came from North Texas), starts a walk-on tuba player from the Tigerland Band, 7'3 senior Andrew Del Piero at C. Alongside him inside is Johnny O'Bryant III, a physical specimen that averaged almost 15 and 10 in conference play (6th in scoring, and 2nd in rebounding in SEC games). On the outside, the Tigers start the national leader in steals with guard Anthony Hickey at one spot (3.1 steals per game). Hickey is also their second leading scorer behind O'Bryant. Alongside him will be sub 6' shooter Andre Stringer and 6'4 senior Charles Carmouche. Wing Shavon Coleman and guard Malik Morgan get most of their minutes off the bench for a team that plays with mostly 4 perimeter players on the court.

The game will be televised by your local SEC Network affiliate, or ESPN3 on the internet if you can't watch Brad Nessler and Jimmy Dykes on TV. It'll also be on your radio, on whatever station you get of the Georgia Bulldog Radio Network.

Also of note, former big man Tim Bassett will be Georgia's honoree in the annual SEC Legends events at this year's conference tourney. Oh, and 5 years ago tonight, a tornado hit downtown Atlanta.