Thursday's game against Florida was definitely not what the Tigers wanted, as they started out slow and just never could recover. It was a similar story to the way the Vanderbilt game and so many others have played out, this season. Auburn has yet to win a true road game so far, this season.
Games at home have been a different story, however. The Tigers have only dropped one game at Auburn Arena this season, and are currently on a six game home winning streak. They hope to continue that trend Saturday evening against South Carolina.
Just looking at the stats for the season would lead one to believe that this game should go the Gamecocks' way. South Carolina is 106th in the nation in points per game, 31st in rebounds, 57th in assists, and 116th in field goal percentage. Auburn is 183rd in points, 246th in rebounds, 266th in assists, and 278th in field goal percentage.
South Carolina is evidently spreading their points around, since their leading scorer, Duane Notice, is only averaging 12.1 points per game. I would take that type of team performance right now, though. Auburn's leading scorers are KT Harrell and Antoine Mason (the two we suspected would be the leading scorers at the start of the season), averaging 16.4 and 14.4 points/game respectively.
When those two are on their game - especially at the same time - Auburn can hang with most teams they play. If one or both go cold, though... Auburn struggles as they did in the first half of the Florida game. Auburn is going to have to find ways to either make sure those two are taking good shots, or else get others more involved in the scoring.
Both of these teams have 1-2 SEC records so far, but South Carolina boasts a 10-5 overall record to Auburn's 9-7. South Carolina's most impressive win is their take-down of #9 Iowa State on January 3rd. Auburn's biggest victory to date is the comeback win against Xavier.
This is going to be a tough match-up for the Tigers. However, it should be a very loud and rowdy home crowd. It's a massive recruiting weekend for football, and the recruits will be in the arena. The game is a sell-out, and the students are back in town with classes starting on Wednesday. This has the potential to be one of the best crowds in the history of Auburn Arena. Hopefully that crowd will propel the Tigers to a victory.
How to Watch, Listen, Stream
When: 7:30pm CDT
Watch: SEC Network
Stream: WatchESPN / ESPN3
Listen: Auburn IMG Network