Will McLaughlin joins us to talk about the upcoming Auburn basketball season! First up, a general look at the team:
Auburn Basketball is right around the corner and there’s a lot to look forward to with this team. While the Chuck Person situation may have put a little damper on the excitement, this Auburn team has more talent and more depth than any other Auburn team in recent memory. It’s Year 4 on the Plains for Bruce Pearl so it’s time to start seeing some positive results around here.
This team has plenty of options to go to for scoring but the success of this year’s team will ultimately come down to two things: defense and rebounding. These are both areas that Auburn has struggled with, especially in SEC play last year. The Tigers gave up 84.2 points per game in SEC play last season. One of the keys to a successful season will be determined by the health of Center Austin Wiley. According to Coach Pearl, Wiley should be ready for opening night after suffering a stress fracture in his leg over the summer. Wiley got some valuable experience last season being eligible for the SEC portion of the schedule as well as his time with Team USA over the summer.
In addition to Wiley, the team returns most of last year’s team including guards Jared Harper and Mustapha Heron, along with Forward Danjel Purifoy, who are all entering their sophomore seasons. In addition, there are a few notable newcomers to this team including freshmen Point Guard Davion Mitchell will come in split point guard duties with Harper. Other newcomers include sophomore Presbyterian transfer DeSean Murray and freshmen Chuma Okeke, forwards who will add much needed depth to go with Horace Spencer and Anfernee McLemore in the frontcourt.
One other player to watch this season: junior guard Bryce Brown. When Brown gets hot shooting the 3, it’s a lot of fun to watch. While Auburn Basketball is on the rise, the same can be said for SEC Basketball. In case you didn’t notice, 3 of teams in last year’s Elite Eight were from the SEC (Florida, Kentucky, South Carolina). With all of this in mind, November 10th can’t get here fast enough. War Eagle!
Stay tuned for more from Will, including an in-depth look at the non-conference schedule, and how Auburn may fare leading up to SEC play. War Eagle.