By Parrish Alford/NEMS Daily Journal
– Looking back: The Rebels secured the No. 3 seed in the SEC West with an 84-74 win against Arkansas on Saturday in the final regular season home game for seniors Chris Warren and Zach Graham. A solid shooting effort followed a disappointing 76-73 loss at Auburn on Wednesday. The Rebels lost a 20-point lead in that defeat.
– Looking ahead: Ole Miss faces East No. 6 seed South Carolina at 2:30 p.m., Thursday in the second game of the opening day of the SEC tourney.
– Who’s hot: Freshman guard Dundrecous Nelson has hit nine of his last 15 3-point field goal attempts and averaged 20 points for the week, scoring a career-high 30 at Auburn and 10 against Arkansas.
– Who’s not: Sophomore guard Nick Williams was held to two points on 1-for-3 shooting against Arkansas.
– RPI watch: The Rebels begin the week with an RPI ranking of 79, still the best in the Western Division.
– Bottom line: The win over Arkansas likely solidified an NIT berth. It also showed what Ole Miss can be when the 3-pointers are falling and forward Reggie Buckner is focused. Too often this season, the Rebels have lacked both of those things in the same game and now must win the SEC tournament to reach the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2002.