SEC Men's Basketball Tournament
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SEC Men's Basketball Tournament
SEC Men's Basketball Tournament
Conference Basketball Championship
Southeastern Conference logo.svg
SEC logo
SportCollege basketball
ConferenceSoutheastern Conference
Number of teams14
FormatSingle-elimination tournament
Current stadiumBridgestone Arena
Current locationNashville, Tennessee
Played1933-34, 1936-1952, 1979-present
Last contest2019
Current championAuburn Tigers
Most championshipsKentucky Wildcats (31)
TV partner(s)ESPN/SEC Network
Official Men's Basketball

The SEC Men's Basketball Tournament is the conference tournament in basketball for the Southeastern Conference (SEC). It is a single-elimination tournament that involves all league schools (currently 14). Its seeding is based on regular season records. The winner receives the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA men's basketball tournament, however the official conference championship is awarded to the team or teams with the best regular season record.[1]


With the abandonment of divisions in SEC men's basketball starting in 2011-12, the top four teams in the conference standings received first-round byes.[2] Bracketing was identical to that of the SEC Women's Basketball Tournament--note that SEC women's basketball has long been organized in a single league table without divisions.

Since the SEC expanded to 14 schools with the arrival of Missouri and Texas A&M in 2012, the 2013 tournament was the first with a new format. Both men's and women's tournaments have the four bottom seeds (#11 throughout #14) playing opening-round games, with the top four seeds receiving a "double-bye" into the quarterfinals.

Before 2012, the top two teams in both the Eastern and Western Divisions received byes in the first round, while #3 in the East played #6 from the West, #4 played #5, etc. The brackets were set up so that #2 would play the winner of the game involving #3 from the other division, and #1 would play the winner of the game involving #4 from the other division. Barring an upset, the semi-finals would pit #1 from one division against #2 from the other division, and the championship game would feature the regular season winners of the two divisions, although this rarely happened in practice.


Throughout its history, the SEC Tournament Championship basketball game has been held at various storied sites, including the Georgia Dome, Mercedes-Benz Superdome, Bridgestone Arena, the BJCC Coliseum, the Pyramid, Rupp Arena, Louisville Gardens, and (in an 2008 emergency relocation) Alexander Memorial Coliseum at Georgia Tech.

From 1933-50, the official SEC Champion was determined by a tournament, except for 1935. Beginning in 1951, a round-robin schedule was introduced and the SEC title was awarded to the team with the highest regular season in-conference winning percentage. From 1951-64, the round-robin consisted of 14 games. In 1965 and 1966, it was expanded to 16 games with the departure of Georgia Tech from the league. From 1967-91, the round-robin schedule was 18 games due to Tulane's departure. Starting with the 1991-1992 season, the SEC split into an Eastern and Western Division with the re-expansion to 12 members, but continued to recognize the SEC Champion based on a winning percentage over the new 16-game conference schedule. The league also began awarding division championships. Divisions would be eliminated starting with the 2011-2012 season. With the addition of Texas A&M and Missouri to the conference, the regular season expanded to an 18 conference game schedule starting with the 2012-13 season.

In 1979, the tournament was renewed with the winner receiving the SEC's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament,[3] but the official league champion remained the team(s) with the best regular season record.

In 2000, the Arkansas Razorbacks became the first team since the league expansion in 1992 to win the conference tournament by playing all four days, beating Georgia, Kentucky, LSU, and Auburn to receive the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Basketball Championships. Auburn was the first SEC team to accomplish this feat in 1985 when they defeated Ole Miss, LSU, Florida, and Alabama to win their first SEC tournament. Since then, the feat has been accomplished three times, first in 2008 by Georgia. In 2009, Mississippi State repeated that feat, defeating Georgia, South Carolina, LSU, and Tennessee to receive the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Basketball Championships. Auburn achieved the feat a second time in 2019, defeating Missouri, South Carolina, Florida and Tennessee.

The first seven games of the 2008 Men's Tournament were played at the Georgia Dome. During overtime of Game 7 between Mississippi State and Alabama, a tornado struck the downtown Atlanta area, damaging the Georgia Dome and several buildings surrounding it, including CNN Center. MSU and Alabama returned after a 64-minute delay to finish their game, but the last quarterfinal game of the day, between Georgia and Kentucky, was postponed until the next day, and the remaining four games of the tournament were moved to Alexander Memorial Coliseum at Georgia Tech. Only credentialed individuals were allowed to attend, including players' families, bands, cheerleaders, and media. No other spectators were allowed in the building.


Year Champion Score Runner-up MVP Venue
1933 Kentucky 46–27 Mississippi State None Atlanta Athletic Club (Atlanta, Georgia)
1934 Alabama 41–25 Florida None Atlanta Athletic Club (Atlanta, Georgia)
1936 Tennessee 41–25 Alabama None Alumni Memorial Gym (Knoxville, Tennessee)
1937 Kentucky 39–25 Tennessee None Alumni Memorial Gym (Knoxville, Tennessee)
1938 Georgia Tech 58–47 Mississippi None Huey Long Field House (Baton Rouge, Louisiana)
1939 Kentucky 46–38 Tennessee None Alumni Memorial Gym (Knoxville, Tennessee)
1940 Kentucky 51–43 Georgia None Alumni Memorial Gym (Knoxville, Tennessee)
1941 Tennessee 36–33 Kentucky None Louisville Gardens (Louisville, Kentucky)
1942 Kentucky 36–34 Alabama None Louisville Gardens (Louisville, Kentucky)
1943 Tennessee 33–30 Kentucky None Louisville Gardens (Louisville, Kentucky)
1944 Kentucky 62–46 Tulane None Louisville Gardens (Louisville, Kentucky)
1945 Kentucky 39–35 Tennessee None Louisville Gardens (Louisville, Kentucky)
1946 Kentucky 59–36 LSU None Louisville Gardens (Louisville, Kentucky)
1947 Kentucky 55–38 Tulane None Louisville Gardens (Louisville, Kentucky)
1948 Kentucky 54–43 Georgia Tech None Louisville Gardens (Louisville, Kentucky)
1949 Kentucky 68–52 Tulane None Louisville Gardens (Louisville, Kentucky)
1950 Kentucky 95–58 Tennessee None Louisville Gardens (Louisville, Kentucky)
1951 Vanderbilt 61–57 Kentucky None Louisville Gardens (Louisville, Kentucky)
1952 Kentucky 44–43 LSU None Louisville Gardens (Louisville, Kentucky)
1979 Tennessee 75–69OT Kentucky Kyle Macy, UK BJCC Coliseum (Birmingham, Alabama)
1980 LSU 80–78 Kentucky DeWayne Scales, LSU BJCC Coliseum (Birmingham, Alabama)
1981 Mississippi 66–62 Georgia Dominique Wilkins, UGA BJCC Coliseum (Birmingham, Alabama)
1982 Alabama 48–46 Kentucky Dirk Minniefield, UK Rupp Arena (Lexington, Kentucky)
1983 Georgia 86–71 Alabama Vern Fleming, UGA BJCC Coliseum (Birmingham, Alabama)
1984 Kentucky 51–49 Auburn Charles Barkley, AUB Memorial Gymnasium (Nashville, Tennessee)
1985 Auburn 53–49OT Alabama Chuck Person, AUB BJCC Coliseum (Birmingham, Alabama)
1986 Kentucky 83–72 Alabama John Williams, LSU Rupp Arena (Lexington, Kentucky)
1987 Alabama 69–62 LSU Derrick McKey, ALA Omni Coliseum (Atlanta, Georgia)
1988 Kentucky[4] 62–57 Georgia Rex Chapman, UK Pete Maravich Assembly Center (Baton Rouge, Louisiana)
1989 Alabama 72–60 Florida Livingston Chatman, UF Thompson-Boling Arena (Knoxville, Tennessee)
1990 Alabama 70–51 Mississippi Melvin Cheatum, ALA Orlando Arena (Orlando, Florida)
1991 Alabama 88–69 Tennessee Allan Houston, UT Memorial Gymnasium (Nashville, Tennessee)
1992 Kentucky 80–54 Alabama Jamal Mashburn, UK BJCC Coliseum (Birmingham, Alabama)
1993 Kentucky 82–65 LSU Travis Ford, UK Rupp Arena (Lexington, Kentucky)
1994 Kentucky 73–60 Florida Travis Ford, UK The Pyramid (Memphis, Tennessee)
1995 Kentucky 95–93OT Arkansas Antoine Walker, UK Georgia Dome (Atlanta, Georgia)
1996 Mississippi State 84–73 Kentucky Dontae' Jones, MSU Louisiana Superdome (New Orleans, Louisiana)
1997 Kentucky 95–68 Georgia Ron Mercer, UK The Pyramid (Memphis, Tennessee)
1998 Kentucky 86–56 South Carolina Wayne Turner, UK Georgia Dome (Atlanta, Georgia)
1999 Kentucky 76–63 Arkansas Scott Padgett, UK Georgia Dome (Atlanta, Georgia)
2000 Arkansas 75–67 Auburn Brandon Dean, ARK Georgia Dome (Atlanta, Georgia)
2001 Kentucky 77–55 Mississippi Tayshaun Prince, UK Gaylord Entertainment Center (Nashville, Tennessee)
2002 Mississippi State 61–58 Alabama Mario Austin, MSU Georgia Dome (Atlanta, Georgia)
2003 Kentucky 64–57 Mississippi State Keith Bogans, UK Louisiana Superdome (New Orleans, Louisiana)
2004 Kentucky 89–73 Florida Gerald Fitch, UK Georgia Dome (Atlanta, Georgia)
2005 Florida 70–53 Kentucky Matt Walsh, UF Georgia Dome (Atlanta, Georgia)
2006 Florida 49–47 South Carolina Taurean Green, UF Gaylord Entertainment Center (Nashville, Tennessee)
2007 Florida 77–56 Arkansas Al Horford, UF Georgia Dome (Atlanta, Georgia)
2008 Georgia 66–57 Arkansas Sundiata Gaines, UGA Georgia Dome/Alexander Memorial Coliseum[5][6] (Atlanta, Georgia)
2009 Mississippi State 64–61 Tennessee Jarvis Varnado, MSU St. Pete Times Forum (Tampa, Florida)
2010 Kentucky 75–74OT Mississippi State John Wall, UK Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2011 Kentucky 70–54 Florida Darius Miller, UK Georgia Dome (Atlanta, Georgia)
2012 Vanderbilt 71–64 Kentucky John Jenkins, VAN New Orleans Arena (New Orleans, Louisiana)
2013 Mississippi 66–63 Florida Marshall Henderson, MISS Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2014 Florida 61–60 Kentucky Scottie Wilbekin, UF Georgia Dome (Atlanta, Georgia)
2015 Kentucky 78–63 Arkansas Willie Cauley-Stein, UK Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2016 Kentucky 82–77OT Texas A&M Tyler Ulis, UK Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2017 Kentucky 82–65 Arkansas De'Aaron Fox, UK Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2018 Kentucky 77–72 Tennessee Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, UK Scottrade Center (St. Louis, Missouri)
2019 Auburn 84-64 Tennessee Bryce Brown, AUB Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2020 Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2021 Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2022 Amalie Arena (Tampa, Florida)
2023 Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2024 Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2025 Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2026 Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2027 Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2028 Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2029 Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)
2030 Bridgestone Arena (Nashville, Tennessee)


Note A: No tournament was held in 1935.
Note B: No tournament was held from 1953-1978.
Note C: No MVP Selection made from 1933-1952.

Television coverage

Tournament championships by school

School # of Tournament Championships Last Tournament Championship
Kentucky 31 2018
Alabama 6 1991
Florida 4 2014
Tennessee 4 1979
3 2009
Auburn 2 2019
Mississippi 2 2013
Vanderbilt 2 2012
Georgia 2 2008
Arkansas 1 2000
LSU 1 1980
Georgia Tech+ 1 1938
Missouri 0 -
South Carolina 0 -
Texas A&M 0 -
Tulane+ 0 -
  • +Former member of the SEC
  • Kentucky defeated Georgia in the 1988 SEC Tournament final, but the tournament title was vacated later because of NCAA violations.[7]


Venue City State Appearances Last Years Notes
Georgia Dome Atlanta Georgia 12 2014 1995, 1998-2000, 2002, 2004-05, 2007-08, 2011, 2014 [v 1]
Louisville Gardens Louisville Kentucky 12 1952 1941-52
Bridgestone Arena Nashville Tennessee 7 2017 2001, 2006, 2010, 2013, 2015-17, 2019-21, 2023-30 [v 2]
Legacy Arena Birmingham Alabama 6 1992 1979-81, 1983, 1985, 1992 [v 3]
Alumni Memorial Gym Knoxville Tennessee 4 1940 1936-37, 1939-40
Rupp Arena Lexington Kentucky 3 1993 1982, 1986, 1993
Atlanta Athletic Club Atlanta Georgia 2 1934 1933-34 [v 4]
Memorial Gymnasium Nashville Tennessee 2 1991 1984, 1991
Mercedes-Benz Superdome New Orleans Louisiana 2 2003 1996, 2003, [v 5]
The Pyramid Memphis Tennessee 2 1997 1994, 1997 [v 6]
McCamish Pavilion Atlanta Georgia 1 2008 2008 [v 1]
Amalie Arena Tampa Florida 1 2009 2009, 2022 [v 7]
Huey Long Field House Baton Rouge Louisiana 1 1938 1938
Smoothie King Center New Orleans Louisiana 1 2012 2012 [v 8]
Orlando Arena Orlando Florida 1 1990 1990
Pete Maravich Assembly Center Baton Rouge Louisiana 1 1988 1988
Thompson-Boling Arena Knoxville Tennessee 1 1989 1989
Enterprise Center St. Louis Missouri 1 2018 2018 [v 9]


  1. ^ a b The Georgia Dome hosted the 2008 SEC Tournament, but became uninhabitable after a tornado in downtown Atlanta. The semifinals and finals were played at McCamish Pavilion, then known as Alexander Memorial Coliseum.
  2. ^ Bridgestone Arena was known as the Gaylord Entertainment Center when it hosted the 2001 and 2006 tournaments. It was also previously known as Sommet Center and Nashville Arena, but never hosted an SEC Men's Tournament under either name. (It hosted the SEC Women's Tournament in 2008 as Sommet Center.)
  3. ^ Legacy Arena was known as the BJCC Coliseum (or, more completely, the "Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex Coliseum") when it hosted all of its tournaments. It was later known as the BJCC Arena, but did not host an SEC Tournament under that name.
  4. ^ In the 1930s, the Atlanta Athletic Club owned two properties--a building in downtown Atlanta which hosted the 1933 and 1934 tournaments, and a golf course at the eastern edge of the city. The club sold both properties in 1967 and moved to its current site in what is now Johns Creek, Georgia.
  5. ^ The Mercedes-Benz Superdome was previously known as the Louisiana Superdome.
  6. ^ "The Pyramid" has never been the official name of this venue, but it has been the standard local name since its opening in 1991. In order, it has officially been known as the Great American Pyramid, Pyramid Arena, and the Memphis Pyramid.
  7. ^ Amalie Arena was known as the St. Pete Times Forum when it hosted the 2009 tournament. It was originally known as the Ice Palace, and was later known as Tampa Bay Times Forum, but never hosted an SEC Tournament under either name.
  8. ^ The Smoothie King Center was known as New Orleans Arena when it hosted the 2012 tournament.
  9. ^ The Enterprise Center was known as Scottrade Center when it hosted the 2018 tournament. It was originally known as Kiel Center, and then as Savvis Center, but never hosted an SEC Tournament under either name.


  1. ^ "Through the Years: SEC Champions" (PDF). 2012-13 SEC Men's Basketball Media Guide. Southeastern Conference. p. 67. Retrieved 2013. Since 1951, when the round-robin schedule was introduced, the title has been decided by a winning percentage on the conference schedule.
  2. ^ "Destin Recap: Day Two" (Press release). Southeastern Conference. June 1, 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  3. ^ SEC Men's Basketball Tournament History
  4. ^ Unofficial Result. Kentucky defeated Georgia in the tournament final, but the championship was vacated later because of NCAA violations.
  5. ^ 2008 SEC Men's Basketball Tournament#Game delays and relocation
  6. ^ Because of a tornado that struck the Atlanta area, the Georgia Dome was declared unsafe to finish the tournament midway through Friday's session. The fourth quarterfinal, semifinals, and final were moved to Alexander Memorial Coliseum with only a few hundred spectators permitted at each game."
  7. ^ Kentucky defeated Georgia in the 1988 SEC Tournament final, but the tournament title was vacated later because of NCAA violations.

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