- Associated Press - Tuesday, October 17, 2017

BRIMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - South Carolina is the preseason favorite to win its fifth straight Southeastern Conference women’s basketball crown while Gamecocks center A’ja Wilson is projected to win her third consecutive SEC player of the year award.

A panel of SEC and national media voted on the preseason rankings that the league released on Tuesday.

National champion South Carolina was picked ahead of Mississippi State, which lost to the Gamecocks in both the SEC women’s basketball tournament final and the NCAA Tournament final.

Missouri is third, followed by Tennessee and Texas A&M.; Wilson, the 6-foot-5 senior, was picked for the preseason all-SEC team. Others on the preseason SEC team include: Victoria Vivians and Morgan William of Mississippi State, Missouri’s Sophie Cunningham and Tennessee’ Mercedes Russell.

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