The Auburn Tigers (4-1) will get a double dose of Atlantic 10 Basketball this week. While Auburn will host George Mason on Sunday afternoon, they will begin the week by traveling to Dayton, Ohio to take on the Dayton Flyers (3-2) at 6PM Wednesday evening. The game is a non-bracketed game in the Charleston Classic where Auburn placed 3rd and Dayton finished 6th. It’s also the first in a home and home series with the Flyers as Dayton will come to Auburn Arena next year.
While nothing has changed in the status of Austin Wiley and Danjel Purifoy, it was otherwise a great weekend for Auburn Basketball. The Tigers put up 119 points Friday night in a 34-point win over Winthrop. Then on Saturday morning, the highly anticipated and well deserved statue of Charles Barkley was unveiled at Auburn Arena. Add those things to what happened in Jordan-Hare Stadium Saturday afternoon and you can say it was a great weekend for Auburn.
Mustapha Heron has been terrific the last 2 games for Auburn. He had 22 points in their win over Hofstra and then scored a career high 31 points in Friday’s win and also had 10 rebounds. In addition, Bryce Brown had 21 points and 3 other Auburn players were in double figures against Winthrop. Auburn shot 61.8% last Friday night so hopefully the Tigers take that hot shooting up to Dayton.
Dayton made the NCAA Tournament last year but lost coach Archie Miller to Indiana and star guard Scoochie Smith to graduation and are now led by former Alabama head coach Anthony Grant, a familiar foe to Auburn fans. They are being led this season by Darrell Davis, who is averaging 20 points per game so far this season. Another interesting tidbit on Dayton’s roster is Kostas Antetokounmpo, who is the little brother of Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo.
This will be a good road test for Auburn as they’ll face a hostile crowd for the time this year. Dayton is a great basketball town with a passionate fan-base and you need no further proof than the fact that the NCAA has awarded the First Four portion of the NCAA Tournament to the city since the creation of the round in 2001. It will be interesting to see how Auburn responds to playing in a true road environment for the first time. War Eagle!