October 19, 2010 8:25:00 AM
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- The Mississippi State men''s basketball team and the University of Mississippi''s Chris Warren earned top billing Monday.
For the second-consecutive year, media members covering the Southeastern Conference have picked MSU to win the Western Division, while Warren, a senior guard, was picked to the preseason All-SEC first team.
The Bulldogs, under the direction of 13th-year coach Rick Stansbury, also received three votes to win the overall title.
The University of Florida, coming off a 21-13 campaign and appearance in the NCAA tournament, was picked as the favorites to win the regular-season crown and received eight total votes.
"My concern is where we are at the end of the year," said Stansbury, whose team was 24-12 last year ago en route to winning the school''s seventh Western Division crown, fifth under his tutelage. "It''s nice to be recognized. I like my team, but like I said, I''m more concerned with our standings come March."
MSU''s 118 total points (18 first-place votes) were ahead of Ole Miss'' 84 points (two first-place votes). Alabama was picked third with 82 points. Arkansas, LSU and Auburn round out the top six in the West.
In the East, Kentucky, Georgia, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, and South Carolina followed Florida.
Georgia junior Trey Thompkins was the choice for SEC Player of the Year with 18 votes.
MSU returns three starters from last year''s squad and open the season Nov. 12 at home against Tennessee State.
Warren also received one vote for SEC Player of the Year. As a junior, he was third in the league with 17.2 points per game en route to All-SEC second-team honors. The Orlando, Fla., native led all SEC players and ranked fourth in the nation with a school-record 111 3-pointers. He is on pace to shatter the Ole Miss career record for treys this season.
Ole Miss will play Delta State in an exhibition game at 6 p.m. Nov. 5. It will begin its 2010-11 season at 7 p.m. Nov. 12 against Arkansas State in Oxford.
Fans will also have a chance to "Meet the Rebels" in The Grove prior to the Oct. 30 home football game against Auburn.
Alabama returns eight players from last year''s squad that finished 17-15 and fourth in the West.
Crimson Tide forward JaMychal Green garnered preseason All-SEC second-team honors. The junior from Montgomery, Ala., averaged 14.1 points and 7.2 rebounds last season
Alabama will play Talladega College in an exhibition game at 7 p.m. Nov. 2. It will tip off the regular season at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 12 against Florida A&M.
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