SEC sports roundup
Here is the latest SEC sports news from The Associated Press
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Freshman A.J. Lawson stole the ball and finished with an emphatic dunk with 13 seconds left in overtime to seal South Carolina's 87-82 upset of No. 14 Mississippi State. Maik Kotsar scored a career-high 25 points and had nine rebounds for the Gamecocks, who were the only SEC team with a losing record in nonconference play but now sit atop the league. Aric Holman led Mississippi State with 20 points and 10 rebounds.
LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Tyler Herro had 21 points, Ashton Hagans scored a career-high 18 and No. 18 Kentucky overcame a 10-0 deficit before holding off Texas A&M for an 85-74 victory. The Wildcats started badly on both ends and twice trailed by 10 before mounting a 19-6 run and leading 46-34 at halftime. They then had to withstand a second-half comeback by the Aggies, who got within 66-64 with 7:55 left.
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Kyle Alexander had 14 points and a career-high 17 rebounds as third-ranked Tennessee beat Missouri 87-63 Tuesday. It was the Volunteers' second straight blowout victory in Southeastern Conference play.
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Tremont Waters had 19 points and seven assists to lead LSU past Alabama 88-79. Kavell Bigby-Williams tied a season high with 14 points. He also grabbed a season-high 13 rebounds and blocked five shots for the Tigers. LSU has now won four straight and six of seven. Kira Lewis Jr. scored 15 for Alabama. The Crimson Tide saw its five-game winning streak snapped.
ATHENS, Ga. (AP) — Tom Crean's rebuilding job at Georgia may be more difficult than he first thought after the reality check of Georgia's most lopsided loss in 60 years in his SEC debut. The first-year coach was careful to avoid panic following an ugly 96-50 loss at No. 3 Tennessee but Crean isn't masking his concern about his team's lack of toughness.
UNDATED (AP) — Alabama coach Nick Saban is famously quick to start focusing on his postseason to-do list, whether the Crimson Tide just won a national championship or fell short. His list this year includes an array of big offseason challenges after a 44-16 loss to Clemson, including replacing several outgoing stars. But quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and wide receiver Jerry Jeudy are among those returning for the Crimson Tide to build around.
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — Clemson's blowout victory over Alabama in the College Football Playoff drew a 14.6 overnight rating for ESPN across its multiple-channel broadcast. That's the lowest-rated title game in the 5-year-old postseason system. The third championship meeting of the Tigers and Crimson Tide, and fourth straight playoff meeting overall, was also the most-lopsided CFP final.
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Florida coach Mike White has three guys he can count on to bring energy and effort every day. Problem is two of them are freshmen. That might bode well for the future of the men's basketball program. But it's not how the Gators were expected to play in White's fourth season. So it has the coach scratching his head and searching for answers as Florida prepares to play at Arkansas on Wednesday night.