It's been just under a week since we last saw Bruce Pearl's Tigers eek out a win against Texas Southern. It was an ugly game, but the Tigers pulled it out. Texas Southern is much better than their record indicates. They took down Michigan State at home and just yesterday knocked off Kansas State in Manhattan.
So where do the Tigers stand going into tonight? Auburn is now 6-5, with three of their six wins coming when the team has been down by double-digits in the second half. That's impressive. It underscores what we've said a few times this season in our post-game recaps: this is a team that doesn't quit.
Trayvon Reed is getting better, and that is going to be huge for Auburn (pun intended). He's played in three games, and you can see the improvement from game to game. One thing I hope he works on a good bit in the down time (as well as Cinmeon Bowers) is free throw shooting. Our big men who spend a lot of time around the basket are going to get fouled. It sure would be nice if they could drop more of those free throws.
Tonight is Auburn's 12th game of the season, and this is only the third game the Tigers have played against a team that did not make any form of post-season tournament last year. However, that does not mean that they are a bad team. According to the Wikipedia article on their team last season they finished the season 24-9, in a four way tie for the C-USA regular season title, and lost in the semifinals of the C-USA tournament. They failed to get an at-large bid, but they still won a regular season conference crown. I'm honestly not sure why the didn't go to the NIT with that record.
This will be yet another tough match-up for the Tigers. They will need to play as cleanly as possible and not fall into scoreless stretches. Taking better shots and hitting free throws will be essential, as well. Hopefully the Tigers can continue the home winning streak in this non-conference stretch leading up to SEC play next week.
How to Watch, Stream, Listen
When: 9pm EST / 8pm CDT
TV: SEC Network
Stream: WatchESPN / ESPN3
Live Audio: Auburn IMG Network