ATHENS, Ga. (AP) — For the second year in a row, the streets of Athens were closed for a parade leading to a celebration at Sanford Stadium for the Georgia national championship. In the stadium, many fans held up three fingers as they looked at the goal of a three-peat. In the era of the AP poll, dating back to 1936, no team has won three consecutive national championships. Georgia won its second straight national championship despite a record 15 players being selected from its 2021 team in last year’s NFL draft. The Bulldogs clinched the 2022 championship with their runaway 65-7 win over TCU in Monday night’s national championship game.
AUBURN, Ala. (AP) — Jaylin Williams posted a season-high with 21 points, Wendell Green Jr. added 17 and No. 21 Auburn defeated Mississippi State 69-63. Auburn led by as many as 13 points in the second half, but Mississippi State cut the lead to four with 2:34 remaining. Green then hit a deep 3-pointer before getting away with a steal and a layup on ensuing possession. Auburn (14-3, 4-1 Southeastern Conference) has won 28 straight games at Neville Arena. The Tigers have the second-longest winning streak at home in Division I men’s basketball behind Gonzaga. Mississippi State (12-5, 1-4) was led by the inside presence of fifth-year senior Tolu Smith, who had 20 points and 10 rebounds. Senior forward DJ Jeffries added 12 points and eight rebounds.
OXFORD, Mississippi (AP) – Alabama defense coordinator Pete Golding is leaving the same job at rival Mississippi. Golding has served as the Crimson Tide’s defensive coordinator since 2018. Golding, 38, joins coach Lane Kiffin but remains in the Southeastern Conference Western Division. Kiffin is a former Alabama offensive coordinator himself. Golding helped lead the tide to a national championship after the 2020 season and a title game a year later. Alabama didn’t make the college football playoffs that season.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Antonio Reeves scored 18 points and Oscar Tshiebwe had 15 points and 13 rebounds to lead Kentucky to a 63-56 win over No. 5 Tennessee on Saturday. Kentucky led 58-50 with 3:28 in the game. Two free throws from Santiago Vescovi and two buckets from Uros Plavsic closed the gap to two with less than a minute to play. A wildcat turnover gave Tennessee a chance to tie or take the lead, but Zakai Zeigler and Plavsic missed deep down. The Wildcats showed physical presence and dominated the volunteers on the boards. Plavsic scored 19 points for Tennessee.
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Colin Castleton had 16 points and 13 rebounds for his third double-double of the season, and Florida rebounded from 11th to 20th-ranked Missouri 73-64 on Saturday. Castleton had six assists, three steals and two blocks as the Gators won their third straight game. He made 7 of 11 shots and finished with five offensive boards. Missouri lost its third straight on the road, this mainly because it had no answer inside for Castleton. Kobe Brown led the Tigers with 21 points.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tyrin Lawrence scored 22 points as Vanderbilt rebounded from a 10-point deficit in the second half and defeated No. 15 Arkansas 97-84 on Saturday for a two-game sled . The Commodores beat Arkansas 63-42 after halftime to eventually lead by 14 points. Arkansas lost its third consecutive straight, never getting closer than seven down the line. The Commodores knocked down all 12 free throws in the final 1:57 to seal the win. Jordan Wright scored 17 points and also helped limit Arkansas freshman Anthony Black to three of his 18 points in the second half.
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) — Brandon Miller scored 31 points and had six 3-pointers at halftime to lead No. 4 Alabama to a 106-66 win over LSU in the most lopsided meeting in series history. Miller, the nation’s top freshman and a potential NBA lottery pick, brought LSU’s 22 first-half points alone to the streaky Crimson Tide. It grew into the largest mismatch in the history of the series at 189 games. Alabama led 59-22 at halftime, just a point behind the previous widest Alabama-LSU lead. The Tide won 113-75 in the 1975-76 season.
COLUMBIA, SC (AP) — Wade Taylor IV knocked down 8 of his 10 shots from the field, with his only errors coming from behind the 3-point arc where he was 4 of 6, and Texas A&M led wire-to-wire one 94-53 defeat of South Carolina. The Aggies blew out of the gate and raced to a 32-9 lead with 7:30 in the first half before the Gamecocks could go into double figures and lead 50-18 by the break. Texas A&M shot 34 of 62 from the field (54.8%), including 9 of 20 from long range, and converted 17 of 21 from the line en route to their sixth straight win.
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