The Tigers return home to Auburn Arena tonight to face the Tennessee Volunteers. Auburn is fresh off a big win over TCU in Ft. Worth as well as a dominating home victory over the Tide. Oh, and there was that whole South Carolina game sandwiched in between.
Tennessee has had quite the three-game streak. They've knocked off Mississippi State, #4 Kentucky, and then Kansas State in the Big XII / SEC Challenge. Their SEC slate didn't start out that way, though, with losses to Arkansas, Florida, and South Carolina. Those are not three teams who any team should be ashamed of losing to, though.
So which Auburn team will show up to face the Vols? They're led by senior guard Robert Hubbs III, averaging 15 points per game. They also have their own freshmen stars in Grant Williams, Lamonte Turner, and Jordan Bowden.
The Vols are averaging 77.6 points per game and giving up 73.6. That compares to Auburn averaging 79 points per game and allowing 76.6. With that, it's easy to see why this game is a push. The two teams are evenly matched in almost every statistical category.
The one big advantage Auburn does have is height (when was the last time THAT was the case in a SEC game?). Tennessee only has one player over 6'7, and he doesn't get that many minutes. Auburn has a number of big men who could cause havoc for the Vols.
The Tigers have their freshmen getting better with each game and the supporting cast finding their way, as well. TJ Dunans didn't score that many points in the victory over TCU, but he was a force in that game, nonetheless. Mustapha Heron and Jerod Harper are continuing their level of play. Danjel Purifoy has been limited while coming back from his ankle injury.
Meanwhile, there's Austin Wiley. He's become a beast for the Tigers under the bucket and just gets better with every passing game. Here's to hoping that continues with a game here at home in Auburn Arena.
The Tigers are still fighting for a post-season spot. They were even mentioned in the "others receiving votes" category of some of the polls this week! Knocking off the Vols before heading to Tuscaloosa this Saturday would go a long way to reaching that goal.
Go get 'em, Tigers!
How to Watch, Stream, and Listen
Time: 8:00pm Central
TV: SEC Network
Listen: Auburn Sports Network