Monday, CBS Sports college basketball reporter Jon Rothstein tweeted out a breakdown of the Top 50 teams in the NET rankings following the weekend action.

Alabama finds itself at No. 3 in the NET, thanks in large part to a bevy of Q1 and Q2 contests over the course of the season.

Surprisingly, the SEC currently leads the nation in teams for the Top 50 in the NET Rankings.

As of Monday afternoon, the listed teams are as follows.

Tennessee (2)

Alabama (3)

Arkansas (29)

Auburn (30)

Kentucky (31)

Texas A&M (40)

Florida (43)

Mississippi State (46)

Missouri (48)

Alabama currently has a combined total of five wins over the other eight SEC teams in the Top 50 of NET, helping bolster its case for a No. 1 overall seed.

Despite recent criticism of the conference being in a 'down-year' and a 'cake-walk' compared to the Big Ten or Big 12, numbers state otherwise.

Alabama has earned its place atop the 'bracketology' predictions and is more than deserving of its No. 3 spot in the AP Poll.

The Tide held its own in a December road win over No. 2 Houston, while fellow SEC foe No. 6 Tennessee smacked the defending national champion No. 9 Kansas Jayhawks in the Battle 4 Atlantis title game.

Here's why it might be time to pump the brakes before writing off the SEC.

Entering Monday, the conference is expected to receive a total of six at-large bids per ESPN's Joe Lunardi.

Nine teams in the Top 50 of the NET rankings spark debate on whether or not the SEC is being snubbed of its respect in the overall field.

Many media members and pundits have spoken down on the league this winter, making it sound like an easy conference to play in at times.

However, the SEC is the only conference to feature two teams in the Top 6 of this week's AP Poll, who also happen to be Top 5 in KenPom, the Top 4 in Sony Moore and the Top 3 in NET rating.

There is no debating the conference being a top-heavy league at the moment, but that doesn't mean the rest of the conference is bad.

Just this past week, Florida (13-10, 6-4) knocked off the Volunteers, while Auburn (17-6, 7-3) narrowly missed a chance at Tennessee as well.

Over the last few weeks, the Crimson Tide have had to fend off a pesky Mississippi State (15-8, 3-7) at home and a reeling LSU (12-11, 1-9) team on the road.

Tennessee lost a home game to a Kentucky team coming off two embarrassing losses in January, while Alabama had a few close calls following the situation with Darius Miles.

From watching all of these games, I attribute the close contests more to the talents of the lower-rated teams than I do a collapse or disaster by Alabama and Tennessee.

For all the hype around there being no easy games in the Big 12 or Big Ten, it certainly feels similar in the SEC.

Perhaps there has been a bit of an overreaction on the conference as a whole, which still has a chance to claim two No. 1 overall seeds and put up to nine teams in the NCAA Tournament.

If history is any indication, the bloodbath that is the Big Ten will not pan out come March. For all the hype a ground and pound midwestern team tends to receive, the Big Ten has not won a national championship since Michigan State in 2000.

I tend to be more reserved on critiquing the Big 12, as Kansas and Baylor have backed up the hype coming out of that conference over the last two seasons. There is a gap between the current best conference in basketball and the SEC, but that does not mean the SEC lacks talent or success.

The Crimson Tide and Volunteers set up well for the 'big dance,' while teams like Kentucky, Texas A&M and Arkansas are expected to heat up come tournament time. Auburn is having a bit of a down year, but don't count out the Tigers just yet either.

Don't let anyone tell you winning by double digits in Bud-Walton-Arena and Mizzou Arena, which Coach Oats and the Crimson Tide did this January, is an easy feat.

Thrashing a pair of conference opponents by 40 and 57 points in Coleman Coliseum adds to the already impressive resume of Alabama, who proved its worth in non-conference play.

The Oklahoma game should serve as an outlier, given how little correlation the SEC/Big 12 Challenge usually has on March Madness. For last year's reigning national champion lost at Alabama on the same weekend the eventual champion in Kansas lost at home to Kentucky.

A midseason non-conference clash is made for TV during the dead months of winter. The game serves as a nice break in the action from a grueling conference schedule, which many teams will take less seriously than a usual matchup.

The lone January loss to Oklahoma does not serve as a measuring stick in judging this Alabama basketball team.

Keep your eye on the SEC, as the conference is bound for a major rise over the next month.

Alabama vs LSU

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