There are still numerous scenarios that could play out in the final two weeks of the regular season as Alabama seeks to return to the SEC tournament later this month, but this weekend could be critical.

Only 12 of the conference’s 14 teams make the field. Missouri received a postseason ban from the NCAA in January, but has since appealed. The Tigers are eligible for the postseason as long as their appeal is pending; it is not expected to be heard before the SEC tournament later this month.

That means Alabama (27-21, 6-15 SEC), Kentucky (23-24, 6-15 SEC) and South Carolina (24-23, 5-19 SEC) are the three most likely candidates to be the 12th and final team to reach Hoover. The Wildcats and Gamecocks play a three-game series in Columbia this weekend. Alabama holds a tiebreaker over South Carolina by virtue of its series win earlier this season, but does not play Kentucky.

The most favorable scenario for Alabama would seem to be for South Carolina to take two games in the series against Kentucky while the Crimson Tide tries to add to its win total during a series against Texas A&M in Tuscaloosa. South Carolina and Kentucky would then be tied in the conference standings at 7-20; one win against the Aggies would also give Alabama a record of 7-20.

Alabama finished last in the conference and missed the SEC tournament in 2017 with a 5-24-1 record and again in 2018 with an 8-22 record. It was the first time in school history that Alabama had missed the conference tournament in back-to-back years since 1987 and 1988, though the tournament has used several formats since then. The tournament has included 12 of 14 teams since 2013 and 10 of 12 teams in 2012.

SEC East Standings

Team Overall Record SEC Record
Vanderbilt 38-9 18-6
Georgia 37-12 16-8
Missouri 33-16 12-11
Tennessee 32-16 10-14
Florida 28-21 9-15
Kentucky 23-24 6-18
South Carolina 24-23 5-19


SEC West Standings

Team Overall Record SEC Record
Arkansas 37-12 17-7
Mississippi State 38-10 15-9
Ole Miss 32-17 15-9
LSU 30-18 14-10
Texas A&M 32-17 12-11
Auburn 29-18 12-12
Alabama 27-21 6-18