The Kentucky Wildcats are favorites on the odds to win the SEC at the sportsbooks once again this season as they prepare for life without star players Anthony Davis and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.
Forwards Davis and Kidd-Gilchrist were two of six Wildcats taken in this past summer's NBA Draft (along with forwards Terrence Jones and Darius Miller and guards Marquis Teague and Doron Lamb) after the team rolled to a win in the title game of the NCAA Tournament in the spring.
Bettors and sportsbooks alike, however, have faith that the Wildcats can rebuild on the fly once again in 2012/13 with their top recruiting class, and Kentucky is pegged as the +120 favorite at 5Dimes on the odds to win the SEC this season. Kentucky sits at No. 3 in the AP Top 25 poll entering the campaign.
The only other ranked SEC team at the start of the season is No. 10 Florida, which sits at +275 on the odds to win the SEC at 5Dimes. The Gators lost to Kentucky in the semifinals of last year's SEC Tournament, and they fell to Louisville in the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament. Star Gators guard Bradley Beal was taken in the NBA Draft by the Wizards.
Alabama (+700), Missouri (+900), Tennessee (+900), and Arkansas (+1150) make up the second tier of schools on the SEC betting odds at 5Dimes, with Georgia, LSU, and Mississippi all listed at +1750 odds to claim the conference title this season.
Vanderbilt - which upset Kentucky in the championship game of the SEC Tournament last year - is then at +2500 at 5Dimes along with Texas A&M and South Carolina on the SEC betting odds for this season. The Commodores lost guard John Jenkins, center Festus Ezeli, and forward Jeffery Taylor to the NBA Draft; Jenkins was the MVP of the SEC Tournament.
Mississippi State (+3000) and Auburn (+6000) are the longshots on the college basketball odds to win the SEC title this season.
Odds to Win SEC at 5Dimes
Texas A&M +2500
South Carolina +2500
Mississippi State +3000