BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The reigning NCAA champion Florida Gators are predicted to win the Southeastern Conference men’s basketball crown while Arkansas is picked to finish third in the Western Division in voting by the media attending 2006 SEC Basketball Media Days, held Oct. 25-26 at the Birmingham Marriott Hotel.
The Gators were listed on 21 of the 29 ballots cast while LSU received five first-place first votes and Alabama three. In the divisional races, Florida drew 28 first place votes for the Eastern Division and Alabama placed first in the Western Division, drawing 16 first place votes.
In the Eastern Division, Kentucky followed the Gators while Tennessee was third, Vanderbilt fourth, South Carolina fifth and Georgia sixth. In the Western Division, Alabama is picked to win, followed by LSU, Arkansas in third, Mississippi State fourth, Auburn fifth and Ole Miss sixth.
In All-SEC voting, LSU’s Glen Davis was the only unanimous selection while Alabama’s Ronald Steele was on 28 of 29 ballots and Florida’s Joakim Noah was on 26 ballots. Tennessee’s Chris Lofton and Florida’s Al Horford rounded out the first-team. Noah was the pick for SEC Player of the Year by 14 of the 29 voters while Davis received 11 votes, Steele three and Kentucky’s Randolph Morris one.
Florida’s Corey Brewer and Taurean Green were on the second team along with Alabama’s Jermareo Davidson, Vanderbilt’s Shan Foster and Mississippi State’s Jamont Gordon.
Arkansas’ Darian Townes was named second-team pre-season All-SEC earlier in the week by the league’s coaches.
2006 SEC BASKETBALL MEDIA DAYS
Birmingham, Ala., October 25-26, 2006
SEC CHAMPION – Florida (21), LSU (5), Alabama (3).
1. Florida (28) 30
2. Kentucky (1) 62
3. Tennessee 84
4. Vanderbilt 138
5. South Carolina 146
6. Georgia 149
1. Alabama (16) 43
2. LSU (13) 46
3. Arkansas 97
4. Mississippi State 108
5. Auburn 147
6. Ole Miss 168
All-SEC First Team (Listed by Vote Total)
*Glen Davis, LSU (29)6-9 295 FJr.Baton Rouge, La.
Ronald Steele, Alabama (28)6-3185 GJr.Birmingham, Ala.
Joakim Noah, Florida (26)6-11232 F/CJr.New York, N.Y.
Chris Lofton, Tennessee (21)6-2197 GJr.Maysville, Ky.
Al Horford, Florida (10)6-10245 F/CJr.Puerto Plata, D.R.
All-SEC Second Team (Listed by Vote Total)
Corey Brewer, Florida (9)6-9185 FJr.Portland, Tenn.
Jermareo Davidson, Alabama (5)6-10230 FSr.Atlanta, Ga.
Shan Foster, Vanderbilt (5)6-6200 G/FJr.Kenner, La.
Jamont Gordon, Miss. State (3)6-4225 G/FSo.Nashville, Tenn.
Taurean Green, Florida (3)6-0177 GJr.Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Player of the Year
Joakim Noah, Florida (14), Glen Davis, LSU (11), Ronald Steele, Alabama (3), Randolph Morris, Kentucky (1).