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#24 Auburn vs. Georgia Southern Game Preview and Open Thread

It’s Opening Night inside Auburn Arena!

NCAA Basketball: SEC Conference Tournament-Auburn vs Missouri Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

Date: Tuesday November 5th

Opponent: Georgia Southern Eagles

Location: Auburn Arena

Time: 8PM

Network: SEC Network, Auburn Radio Network

Auburn Basketball is back TONIGHT!

We have done a Tip-Off Countdown. We have done a roster and schedule breakdown. We have made predictions.

Now it’s time for the games to be played (FINALLY!)

This will not be an easy task for Auburn tonight, and the same can be said for these first 3 games. Auburn hosts the Eagles tonight, heads to Annapolis for a Friday showdown with Davidson and then travels to Mobile to play South Alabama a week from tonight. The Eagles and Jaguars are 2 of the top 3 teams in the Sun Belt while Davidson is picked to finish 2nd in the Atlantic 10. Auburn isn’t playing any slouches to start the season.

Get to Know Georgia Southern

The Eagles are led by 7th year head coach Mark Byington. The Eagles finished 21-12 last season and are picked to finish 3rd in the Sun Belt. Last year, they were 4th in Field Goal percentage and 15th in scoring averaging over 82 points a game. Auburn won the last meeting 92-62 in 2015 and has beaten the Eagles in each of the previous 7 all-time matchups.

They lost leading scorer Tookie Brown but return their next 3 leading scorers. Junior guard Quan Jackson (#13) averaged 14.8 points a game last year. Senior guard Ike Smith (#3) was limited to 10 games last year but averaged 14.7 points a game. Senior forward Isaiah Crawley (#53) averaged 11.6 points a game last season. Also keep an eye on senior guard David-Lee Jones Jr. (#24) who will likely come off the bench but was the team’s best 3-point shooter last year at 39.8% (39-98).

What to Look For From Auburn

I’m excited to see J’Von McCormick and Samir Doughty in the backcourt this season. McCormick led Auburn with 20 points in their exhibition win over Eckerd Friday night. He looked comfortable leading the offense and his role will increase dramatically this season as he takes over at the point for Jared Harper.

Samir Doughty will be asked to take more of a scoring role this year and if I had to pick a leading scorer for tonight, I’m gonna go with Doughty. He’s capable of making big 3-pointers in big situations and I think he’ll hit 3-4 of them tonight.

I’m also excited to see the newcomers and how they acclimate to playing with the veterans. Devan Cambridge made quite the impression on the Auburn faithful scoring 11 points and throwing a vicious one handed dunk late in the game to remind people of Malik Dunbar.

Game Prediction

Bruce has been worried about this game for awhile now and I think the Eagles will be a tough opening test for this team. Remember Auburn plays 3 games over the next week. I think Auburn has more talent and it may take awhile to get separation against a veteran group, but Auburn should be able to win this game. The line has Auburn as a 14 12 point favorite and I’m thinking the margin will be in that ballpark.

Auburn 81 Georgia Southern 69