NASHVILLE -- Somebody asked a few days ago who I think will win the SEC East.
"Kentucky, probably. But it could be Georgia. Or Vanderbilt. Or Florida. Or ..."
Three minutes later, I was still rambling in a way that suggested I didn't have a great answer. But don't blame me. Nobody has a great answer to a question about who will win the SEC's Eastern Division, including Vanderbilt's Festus Ezeli.
|Erving Walker is leading the Gators with 14.4 PPG. (Getty Images)|
"I always thought it would be Florida," said Georgia coach Mark Fox, at which point I reminded him that UK's John Calipari said in the preseason that the SEC East champion would actually be Georgia. "Yeah, but he was just trying to set me up."
Ladies and gentlemen, this is your SEC East. Just one week in and it's already clear there is no clear favorite. Florida is 2-0 and Tennessee is 0-2. Everybody else -- Kentucky, Georgia, Vanderbilt and South Carolina -- is 1-1, and good luck trying to figure out where things go from here. The highest-ranked school of the bunch is Kentucky, which has already lost to Georgia, which has already lost to Vanderbilt, which has already lost to South Carolina.
The team at the top of the standings (Florida) has lost to unranked Jacksonville.
The team at the bottom of the standings (UT) has beaten No. 5 Pittsburgh and No. 7 Villanova.
Every SEC East school except South Carolina has been ranked at some point this season, and every SEC school except Kentucky has been unranked at some point this season. Things are constantly changing, forever going in different directions. So I don't know what to think anymore. But here's what I think I think right now: I think Kentucky has the highest ceiling. I think Georgia has the best mix of a talented roster and gifted coach. I think Vanderbilt will finish undefeated at Memorial Gym. I think Florida is the safest pick. I think Tennessee is a mess on the verge of a possible five-game losing streak. And I think South Carolina will finish last, one way or another.
My official pick is still Kentucky, I guess.
(I'll be a sucker for talent till the day I die.)
But it could be Georgia. Or Vanderbilt. Or Florida. Or ...
The truth is that I don't really know.
But neither do you.
So it's probably best to just sit back and watch and see where this ride takes us.