A career night from Chuma Okeke was absolutely wasted, Ole Miss couldn’t miss, and nobody on the Auburn side seemed to have any answers in a sludgy and disgusting 60-55 loss to the Rebels at home. It’s just the second home loss for Auburn this year, and only the third loss at Auburn Arena since the beginning of the 2017-18 season.
Auburn was stymied in the first half, playing a game that didn’t look like their own. The Tigers were cold from the floor, hitting just 2-7 three-pointers as Ole Miss led 30-24 at halftime. Time and again, the Rebels would hit threes as the shot clock expired. All told, Ole Miss buried 7-20 threes in the first half, yet only led by six points even with Auburn’s poor play. Bryce Brown and Jared Harper scored only 10 combined points on 2-11 shooting, and so you thought that Auburn may wake up and find the bottom of the net in the second half. Terence Davis played little time with foul trouble for Ole Miss, but Devontae Shuler hit three threes as the shot clock expired to take the life out of the Tigers on several key possessions.
In the second half, Auburn quickly fell behind by 10 points as the Rebels rattled off consecutive threes from Shuler and Breein Tyree, but Chuma Okeke kept the Tigers in it. Okeke scored 16 second-half points on 5-6 shooting and a perfect 5-5 effort from the foul line, but even that wasn’t enough. The rest of the Tigers hit just three baskets in the second half, including a combined 1-9 effort from Brown and Harper after the break.
Chuma Okeke finished with 23 points on the night, but the combination of Tyree and Shuler for Ole Miss notched 37 points to go along with eight three-pointers. With the loss, Auburn drops back below .500 in the SEC at 5-6, with two must-win games coming up at Vanderbilt and at home against Arkansas. The Tigers will be in action at Memorial Gym in Nashville this Saturday at 11 AM CST against the last-place team in the SEC.