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Auburn Defeats North Florida 83-66

The Tigers get the basketball season off right.

John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

Three-pointers were falling like sweet summer rain for Auburn in the early going of tonight's opening college basketball game of the 2016-17 season.

While the game was close for the first part of the first half, Auburn's hot hands kept nailing down shots and the Tigers slowly pulled away until the first half ended with the Tigers up by 19 points.

It wasn't just one player getting the majority of the points, either. Multiple Tigers had big nights, some in the first games of their career. Of the 10 players who recorded stats, only Anfernee McLemore failed to record double-digit minutes. Four of them recording double-digit points, too, led by Bryce Brown's 19. It's been a long time since we've seen that type of depth for Auburn.

The second half opened much the same as Auburn increased its lead to 30 points before the first media timeout of the second half. The rest of the second half was rather sloppy, though. The Ospreys committed 17 fouls in the 2nd half alone for a total of 30 in the game. Their constant fouling slowed the Tigers from getting into a rhythm for much of the 2nd half, but the Tigers also played a bit sloppier and looser at times in the 2nd half, as well.

There's a lot of promise in this Auburn Basketball team. They've still got a lot of growing up to do, chemistry on the court to develop, learn how to deal with big leads, etc. It's hard to feel too upset about a 17 point victory over a team who just missed out on last year's NCAA Tournament, though. Especially when it's the first game of the year.

Three Things I Think:

1) The Freshman Are As Good As Advertised. Purifoy and Heron both made some great plays on the court, tonight. Purifoy's dunk definitely was a #DamnDanjel moment. I loved seeing Heron fighting for the ball and getting at least one offensive board. Jared Harper held his own in his first collegiate game, as well. He had at least two steals that I saw to go along with his 10 points. As they improve, this team is just going to be more and more fun to watch.

2) Bryce Brown Hasn't Missed A Beat. Brown finished last season setting an Auburn record for 3-pointers by a freshman. He started the night off tonight with two threes to open Auburn's scoring. He finished 5/10 from beyond the arc.

3) Horace Spencer Has Gotten Better, But Still Has Fouling Issues. Spencer was the only Tiger to foul out tonight, but he did so with just a minute or two left to go in the game. I saw he had a few blocks, too. He also had one amazing hook shot while getting fouled.