While much has been made about Texas A&M’s move to the SEC from a football standpoint, the Aggies also should strengthen the league in men’s basketball.

You couldn’t make that statement a decade ago. But Texas A&M has enjoyed a renaissance of sorts in hoops under former coaches Billy Gillispie and Mark Turgeon. Gillispie may not have worked out at Kentucky, but he led Texas A&M to three straight postseason berths and two NCAA Tournament appearances from 2004-07. Turgeon picked up where Gillispie left off, leading Texas A&M to four straight NCAA Tournament appearances in four seasons before leaving this offseason for Maryland.

During that span, Texas A&M produced three NBA players — guard Antoine Wright (Sacramento Kings), guard Acie Law (Golden State Warriors) and center DeAndre Jordan (Los Angeles Clippers).

New Texas A&M coach Billy Kennedy, hired away from Murray State, inherits a team that returns three starters from its 25-9 campaign last season. Florida State ended Texas A&M’s season in the NCAA Tournament.

Texas A&M isn’t projected to begin playing basketball in the SEC until 2012-13. But Florida fans can get a sneak peak of the Texas A&M program this season. The Aggies will travel to Sunrise to face Florida on Dec. 17 in the Orange Bowl Classic.