SEC expands tournament, introduces ‘permanent rival’ into 2013 conference schedule

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As part of a restructuring of the 2013 conference schedule, the SEC announced Monday that it would be integrating a “permanent rival” for each team, a matchup that will take place six times over the course of the new three-year model.

The permanent rivals are: Alabama-Auburn, Arkansas-Missouri, Florida-Kentucky, Georgia-South Carolina, LSU-Texas-A&M, Ole Miss-Mississippi State, and Tennessee-Vanderbilt.

The above rivalry games will be structured as a home-and-home, with two matchups per year and each team getting one home game. They will be part of a larger 18-game conference schedule, where teams will play each conference opponent at least once per season.

Plans were approved last week at the conference’s annual meetings in Florida and would take effect in the 2013-14 season, carrying through 2015-16.

Along with the change to the conference schedule, the SEC tournament is due for some shifting, as well.

Much like the ACC and Big East, the SEC’s conference tournament will now include every team, with no disqualifications because of conference record, seeded 1-14. It will now begin on Wednesday, featuring seeds 11-14.

The 2013 SEC tournament will be held in Nashville, Tenn., from March 13-17.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_