The Tennessee Vols went through a bit of a rough stretch in late February.

A blowout loss to Kentucky, combined with an overtime loss to LSU, caused the Volunteers to drop from an expected No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament to a likely No. 2 seed.

But thanks to a hard fought road win against Ole Miss, and a revenge win against Kentucky on Saturday, the Vols are once again primed to be a top seed in the NCAA Tournament.

According to the latest predictions from CBS Sports’ Jerry Palm, Tennessee’s win against the Wildcats vaulted them back to the top of the brackets.

Here’s the explanation:

Seventh-ranked Tennessee exacted revenge against fourth-ranked Kentucky on Saturday in a 71-52 victory that moves the Volunteers back up to the top line of the projected bracket. The Wildcats, who were a No. 1 seed entering the game, will fall back down to the No. 2 line.

At 25-3 with eight Quadrant 1 wins — and losses only to top 20 teams — the Vols have earned their place as a No. 1 seed. Tennessee’s losses have been to Kansas on a neutral court, at Kentucky and at LSU.

The Vols close out the regular season next week with a home game against Mississippi State and a road game against the Auburn Tigers.

If UT gets through the rest of the regular season unscathed and they make a deep SEC tournament run, I think they’ll be locked in as a No. 1 seed.

And if Tennessee wins the SEC Tournament, I think the Volunteers will be the top overall seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Though I’m pretty sure Rick Barnes and company are taking it one game at a time. The SEC Tournament, and by extension the NCAA Tournament, are not even on Tennessee’s radar at the moment.

Featured image via Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

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