Move over, make some space, Ole Miss is in the building.
The Ole Miss Rebels basketball team is officially one of the 25 best teams in the country.
First-year coach Kermit Davis and his Rebels, picked to finish last in the SEC, debuted in the Associated Press poll at No. 18 on Monday after knocking off ranked Auburn and Mississippi State last week.
The last time Ole Miss saw itself in the Associated Press top 25 it was January 2013, when the Rebels sat at 17-2 and 6-0 in the SEC. The Rebels subsequently lost four of their next five conference games but eventually went on to win an SEC Tournament title over Florida with Marshall Henderson gator chomping his way into the stratosphere of Ole Miss legends. It was the same year the Rebels upset a Wisconsin team with multiple NBA players in the first round of the NCAA Tournament and nearly made it to the Sweet Sixteen.
Now, after a six year hiatus, the Rebels are finally back in the AP top 25.
A 13-2 start and a perfect conference record has a lot to do with it, but the two wins over now No. 14 Auburn and No. 24 Mississippi St. got the entire country talking about the job Kermit Davis is doing in Oxford.
Keep in mind, these aren’t just Andy Kennedy’s players that he’s succeeding with. Freshmen Blake Hinson and K.J. Buffen, recruited by Davis, have been instrumental in the Rebels’ meteoric rise.
For the moment, enjoy the ranking and the attention Ole Miss is getting, buy as many tickets to as many home games as you can and hope this top 25 ranking will be the start of a special season.
Tuesday night, Ole Miss takes the court against LSU to play as a top-25 team for the first time in nearly six years. None of these players have had higher expectations than what is about to happen, so keep it all in perspective moving forward.
The other SEC teams in the top 25 are No. 3 Tennessee, No. 12 Kentucky, No. 14 Auburn and No. 24 Mississippi State.
Full AP top-25
- Michigan State
- Texas Tech
- Virginia Tech
- Florida State
- North Carolina
- NC State
- Ole Miss
- Mississippi State