NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Green may have been the preferred color to wear across the country because of St. Patrick’s Day Sunday, but there was a ton of red in the stands at the end of Southeastern Conference Men’s Basketball Tournament.
The reason? For the first time since 1981, the Ole Miss Rebels are SEC Tournament champions, thanks to a 66-63 win over the No. 13 Florida Gators at the Bridgestone Arena. The Rebels’ prize: Their first trip to the NCAA Tournament since 2002 as a No. 12 seed.
Needing to win at least two games to feel better about earning an at-large bid to the field of 68, the Rebels (26-8 overall) dismissed their critics, the national basketball pundits who were skeptical about their resume, and rallied past the Gators, a team that had won 11 of the last 12 meetings between the two.