Presenting: your Southeastern Conference must-see matchups
Team-by-team highlights of an exciting SEC schedule
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The 2021 SEC Tournament is scheduled for March 3-7 at Bon Secours Wellness Arena in Greenville, S.C.
The NCAA Tournament is scheduled to begin March 19 at various sites around the nation while the NCAA Final Four is slated for April 2 and 4 inside the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.
But there’s a lot of women’s basketball that will need to be played before then.
On Friday the SEC women’s basketball programs released their fall non-conference and conference schedules.
Get out your calendar and pen as we look at a few key matchups of the season which tips off Nov. 25.
South Carolina Gamecocks
The Gamecocks will play eight home SEC games. They will face preseason No. 11 Kentucky twice as their permanent home-and-home opponents. They will also take on Alabama and LSU twice this season. The conference schedule features three Monday night games, including a battle with preseason No. 14 Arkansas on Jan. 18.
South Carolina's SEC play tips off on New Year's Eve with Ole Miss coming to Colonial Life Arena and closes at preseason No. 13 Texas A&M on Feb. 28.
Key games for the Gamecocks include at No. 3 UConn (Feb. 8), at No. 6 Mississippi State (Jan. 28), No. 8 NC State (Dec. 3), No. 11 Kentucky (Jan. 10, Feb. 21), at No. 13 Texas A&M (Feb. 28), No. 14 Arkansas (Jan. 18) and vs. No. 21 Gonzaga (Nov. 30).
University of Kentucky Wildcats
The Wildcats, No. 11 in the AP Preseason Top 25, begin their season on Wednesday, Nov. 25 vs. Murray State. The Wildcats will also UK host Belmont (Nov. 29), Marshall (Dec. 9), Samford (Dec. 13) and Wofford (Dec. 19) in non-conference play.
In league play, the Wildcats will host Arkansas (Dec. 31), South Carolina (Jan. 10), Vanderbilt (Jan. 17), Alabama (Jan. 28), Missouri (Jan. 31), Tennessee (Feb. 11), LSU (Feb. 18) and Ole Miss (Feb. 28). Kentucky will take road trips in SEC play to Tennessee (Jan. 3), Texas A&M (Jan. 7), Auburn (Jan. 14), Mississippi State (Jan. 24), Ole Miss (Feb. 4), Florida (Feb. 15), South Carolina (Feb. 21) and Georgia (Feb. 25).
The Wildcats will play No. 1 South Carolina twice and will also face No. 6 Mississippi State, No. 13 Texas A&M, No. 14 Arkansas, No. 19 DePaul and RV Tennessee twice.
Texas A&M Aggies
Key matchups for the Aggies include games against No. 1 South Carolina at home and a road matchup versus UT Longhorns as part of the Big 12/SEC Challenge on Friday.
The Aggies will begin the season at home versus Lamar on Nov. 25. This will be the first game A&M has played since the COVID-19 pandemic ended the 2019-20 season. A trip to Chicago to play No. 19 DePaul on Nov. 28 rounds out the first week of play.
The rest of the non-conference schedule sees games on the road against RV Texas (Dec. 6) and Little Rock (Dec. 10). Then the Aggies host five matchups versus Texas Southern (Dec. 2), Abilene Christian (Dec. 13), Sam Houston (Dec. 15), Rice (Dec. 20) and Northwestern State (Dec. 28).
SEC home games include Tennessee (Dec. 31), No. 11 Kentucky (Jan. 7), No. 6 Mississippi State (Jan. 17), Georgia (Jan. 31), LSU (Feb. 4), No. 14 Arkansas (Feb. 14), Missouri (Feb. 18) and No. 1 South Carolina (Feb. 28).
Mississippi State Bulldogs
Alabama Crimson Tide
Alabama opens its season November 25 against Samford in Coleman Coliseum. In total, the Crimson Tide will play 14 home contests, six non-conference and eight Southeastern Conference matchups, in addition to 11 road games.
Following their season opener, Alabama welcomes in Houston (November 29) and USC Upstate (December 2) before hitting the road for the SEC/Big 12 Challenge where the Tide will face Oklahoma State in Stillwater. Alabama’s remaining home games in the month of December include Sam Houston State (December 9), Southern Miss (December 17) and Jacksonville (December 21), while remaining non-conference road matchups will take place at Mercer (December 13) and Memphis (December 19).
The SEC season begins on New Year’s Eve with a trip to Columbia, Missouri to take on the Tigers. Alabama’s first home league games will occur on January 4 and 7 against South Carolina and LSU, respectively.
Vanderbilt’s season schedule includes a home-and-home series with Florida, Mississippi State and Tennessee. Throughout the year, Alabama, South Carolina, Texas A&M, Georgia and LSU will all make trips to Nashville while Vanderbilt is set to visit Missouri, Kentucky, Arkansas, Auburn and Ole Miss.
SEC play begins Dec. 31 vs Florida and continues Jan. 3 at Mississippi State.
Key matchups for the LSU Tigers include hosting a New Year’s Eve matchup against n Auburn at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center.
LSU’s shortened non-conference schedule will begin the season at the South Point Thanksgiving Shootout on Thanksgiving weekend. LSU will face BYU on Friday, November 27 and West Virginia on Saturday, November 28 at the South Point Hotel Casino and Spa in Las Vegas.
The Tigers will host home games against UCF (December 4) and Texas Southern (December 14) before returning to Las Vegas for the Duel in the Desert hosted on campus by UNLV, December 19-21.
After the SEC opener against Auburn, LSU heads out on the road to Ole Miss (January 3) and Alabama (January 7) to start the new year.
University of Florida Gators
Florida kicks off its season Wednesday, Nov. 25 when it hosts Grambling State. The Gators will host five non-conference matchups at Exactech Arena at the Stephen C. O'Connell Center along with eight SEC games.
Florida's home opponents include: Texas A&M, Mississippi State, Auburn, Missouri, Vanderbilt, Kentucky, Alabama and Georgia during the league season while it also welcomes Grambling, Charleston Southern, Florida Atlantic, and North Florida for non-conference action.
Florida's SEC opener will take place Thursday, Dec. 31 at Vanderbilt as the Gators, for the fourth-straight season, begin their conference play away from home. Florida's SEC home opener, its first action of 2021, is scheduled for Jan. 3 when it welcomes Texas A&M to town.
Four preseason top-15 opponents will visit Auburn Arena this season. Auburn’s three home-and-home opponents this season will be Alabama, Arkansas and Georgia. All league teams will have open dates Jan. 21 and Feb. 7.
Auburn opens league play on New Year’s Eve with a trip to Baton Rouge to take on LSU, then opens the home portion of their schedule at home against Georgia (Jan. 3). A trip to Ole Miss is next (Jan. 7), followed by home games against Missouri (Jan. 10) and Kentucky (Jan. 14).
February begins with a visit from defending SEC Champion South Carolina (Feb. 4), followed by a trip to Georgia (Feb. 11) and a home Valentine’s Day contest with Alabama (Feb. 14).
University of Arkansas Razorbacks
University of Tennessee Lady Volunteers
A highlight of the Lady Volunteers’ season includes a No. 3 UConn visit on Jan. 21st. The Lady Volunteers will also have three season-opening home games including Florida A&M on Nov. 27, Western Kentucky on Nov. 28 and East Tennessee State on Dec. 1.
Tennessee hits the road for match-ups with a pair of Power 5 teams on Dec. 6 and 13. The Lady Vols and West Virginia face off in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge, followed by a trip to Austin to battle the Longhorns, under first-year and former Mississippi State head coach Vic Schaefer.
Tennessee has three more home non-conference opponents on its schedule including Jackson State on Dec. 20, Lipscomb on Dec. 28 and third-ranked UConn on Jan. 21. The eleven-time national champion Huskies make their first visit to Knoxville since 2006.
University of Missouri Tigers
Ole Miss Rebels
The Rebels open their season with Northwestern State at home on Nov. 25, the beginning of an eight-game non-conference schedule that concludes with playing host to Alabama State on Dec. 21. After a break for the holidays, Ole Miss will open SEC play on New Year’s Eve with a trip to the top-ranked team in the nation, No. 1 South Carolina.
Ole Miss returns home to Oxford for a two-game homestand against LSU (Jan. 3) and Auburn (Jan. 7) before hitting the road to take on in-state rival Mississippi State on Jan. 10. The Rebels bounce from the road and home over the final five games in January vs. Missouri (Jan. 14), at Georgia (Jan. 17), vs. Florida (Jan. 24), at Tennessee (Jan. 28) and at LSU (Jan. 31).
University of Georgia Bulldogs