Kentucky picked as preseason SEC hoops favorite

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - Kentucky has been picked as the preseason favorite to win the Southeastern Conference men's basketball championship.

The Wildcats' Patrick Patterson was the choice to win player of the year honors. The predictions, released on Monday, were made by a panel of SEC and national media members. Kentucky is coming off a season when it failed to make the NCAA tournament but is picked for a quick rebound with the hiring of coach John Calipari and the nation's top recruiting classes. Mississippi State was picked to win the West Division.

Along with Patterson, the other preseason All-SEC first-team picks were South Carolina guard Devan Downey, Tennessee guard/forward Tyler Smith, Mississippi State center Jarvis Varnado and Mississippi guard Terrico White.

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