Julius Mays' two free throws with 9.4 seconds remaining capped Kentucky's comeback from a seven-point deficit for a 61-57 upset of No. 11 Florida on Saturday that revived its NCAA tournament prospects.
Seth Curry scored 23 points and No. 9 Duke held off a furious comeback by No. 3 Kentucky, beating the defending national champions 75-68 Tuesday night in the first matchup between the storied programs since 2001.
Darius Miller and Eric Bledsoe had 14 points apiece and No. 3 Kentucky withstood a Florida comeback with a 74-66 victory Sunday, completing an 18-0 home season and likely cementing its hold on a top seed in the NCAA tournament.
Patrick Sparks hit five of his seven 3-pointers in the second half and scored a season-high 26 points, lifting No. 5 Kentucky to a 78-71 comeback victory over Alabama on Saturday to clinch the Wildcats' 43rd Southeastern Conference title.
The Illini are 40 points ahead of new No. 2 Kansas, which takes over the spot vacated by North Carolina after its loss at archrival Duke. Kentucky jumps two spots up to third, followed by the Tar Heels and ACC foe Wake Forest.