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06/05/2019 4:41 am  

ATHENS, Ga. Joe Maddon Jersey . -- An important Southeastern Conference Eastern Division showdown is being overshadowed this week by another deluge of compelling SEC West games. The only ranked teams from the SEC East will meet on Saturday when No. 13 Georgia visits No. 23 Missouri in a game which could provide some clarity in the muddled East race. The game has been set for an early kickoff as if to serve as a warm-up for offerings from the West -- the nations most powerful division. Georgia receiver Michael Bennett insists hes not insulted by the powerful West overshadowing the East in the regular season. He said the East will have its chance to shine in the SEC championship game. Bennett said he hopes the heavyweights in the West bludgeon each other before the Dec. 6 title game in Atlanta. They can have all their fun right now, but all that matters is once we get to Atlanta, whoever wins that game is going to get the attention, Bennett said. Im glad theyre all really good over there and beating each other up. Someone is going to come kind of bruised and battered into the SEC championship game. Hopefully well be there and be able to get the win and go on to the playoffs. The West boasts four of the nations top seven teams in the Top 25. Having those four teams come from only two states, Mississippi and Alabama, only makes the drama more difficult to ignore. The must-see SEC West showdowns this week include No. 2 Auburn at No. 3 Mississippi State and No. 3 Mississippi at No. 14 Texas A&M. Also, No. 7 Alabama plays at Arkansas. Meanwhile, the SEC East race is up for grabs. Missouri (4-1, 1-0) is the divisions only team without a SEC loss. Florida, Georgia and Kentucky are 2-1 in the SEC. Tennessee is 0-2 in the conference, but the Vols believe theyre still in the East race. Thats an advantage to playing in the SECs weaker division. I just know that we still have a good chance of winning the East, said Tennessee cornerback Cam Sutton. I think almost every team on our side has a loss, so its not out of the question for us to make a comeback toward the end of the season. It definitely gives us a little bit more motivation each day coming in. Asked to explain the power shift to the SEC West, Tennessee coach Butch Jones said I think some of it is cyclical. Jones said that doesnt mean the East is packed with pushovers. Really, I believe the East is extremely competitive as well, Jones said. Its just the nature of the SEC. ... Every team is good. Every team is physical. Every team is well-coached, and every program has very good fan support, so when you go on the road, every away game is a hostile environment. Kentucky (4-1) is trying to take advantage of the wide-open race in the East. It has back-to-back conference wins over Florida and South Carolina and is moving closer to becoming bowl-eligible for the first time since 2010. Kentucky coach Mark Stoops said the Wildcats are part of a movement toward great parity in the league. Its a tough conference and theres not a heck of a lot of teams going backward, Stoops said. Everybody is trying to move forward like we are. We are trying to do everything we can to improve our program, and I think you see that from a lot of the teams in this league. South Carolina (3-3, 2-3) was a popular preseason pick to win the East but has fallen to fifth after last weeks loss at surprising Kentucky. South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier said I dont think anybody could disagree the East is down. Maybe theyve recruited a little better than everybody else, Spurrier said last week of the West teams. The Wests breakthrough teams are drawing national attention. ESPNs College GameDay is spending its second straight week in the state of Mississippi, shifting from Oxford, where it was based for last weeks Ole Miss win over Alabama, to Starkville. Bennett said he understands if those games generate a bigger buzz than Georgias important test at Missouri. It doesnt bother me at all, Bennett said. Its actually kind of exciting to see. I love the attention on Ole Miss and Mississippi State. I think its good for college football. ------ AP Sports Writers Gary Graves in Lexington, Kentucky; Peter Iacobelli in Columbia, South Carolina and Steve Megargee in Knoxville, Tennessee contributed to this report Brandon Morrow Jersey . The Raptors (15-15) posted six road victories last month and have won seven of their last nine games overall. Toronto visits the Washington Wizards on Friday night. Anthony Rizzo Jersey . -- Jonathan Vilmas season is over and his future on the football field is in doubt.Rookie New Orleans Pelicans NBA shooting guard Bryce Dejean-Jones has died after being shot when he broke into a Dallas apartment. Dejean Jones kicked in the front door of the apartment and woke up the resident in his bedroom and failed to respond when the man called out. The 23-year-old then kicked the bedroom door and was shot with a handgun. He collapsed in the apartments hallway and died at a hospital form a gunshot wound to his abdomen.The shooting is under investigation, police said.Dejean-Jones was believed to be breaking into the apartment of an estranged acquaintance but entered the wrong one, the apartment complex manager said in an email to residents obtained by Dallas NBC television station KXAS.Dejean-Jones was reeportedly in Dallas to celebrate his daughters birthday and got into an argument with the childs mother before the shooting. Kyle Schwarber Jersey. Dallas ABC television station WFAA quoted sources as saying that Dejean-Jones girlfriend lived in the apartment complex.A 6-foot-6-inch (1.98-meter) guard from Iowa State University, Dejean-Jones had averaged 5.6 points and 3.4 rebounds in 14 games with the Pelicans.He made his NBA debut in January. Dejean-Jones, a native of Los Angeles, had signed a multi-year contract with the New Orleans club in February.We are devastated at the loss of this young mans life who had such a promising future ahead of him. Our thoughts and prayers are with Bryces family during this difficult time, the team said in a statement

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