GAME 25: Saturday, February 11th, 2023
Neville Arena - Auburn, AL
Time: 1:00 pm CST/2:00 pm EST
Network: ESPN, Auburn Radio Network
Betting Odds: Auburn +2.5, Over/Under 153.5 via Draft Kings Sportsbook
(Odds/lines subject to change. Visit DraftKings for more information.)
Oh boy, here we go. It’s the situation where Auburn has been working to put things together and make something happen, even if we haven’t seen the results yet.
The Tigers have lost four of five, true. However, Three of those losses were on the road, including slim losses to two of the top three teams in the SEC, and another to a BIG 12 team at their place. Now, we’re back at home, for College Gameday, with all eyes on this game, and those guys coming in to play.
Auburn has been playing a different level of basketball, raising the bar after weeks of offensive struggles. The Tigers were able to keep up in Morgantown and College Station, and both defenses ruled the day in Knoxville, but Auburn has lost close contests on the road. Now we’re back home.
Unfortunately, we may be playing the best and most dangerous team on the schedule in Alabama. It’s truly awful that they’re this good this year, and boast one of the best players in the land in Brandon Miller. He’s a guy who can truly go off for 30 points on any night, but they’ve got great complements for him all around the squad.
It really does start with Miller, who averages 19.0 ppg, and who will thankfully only be playing one season in Tuscaloosa, but there are other guys that can bust it open every time out.
Mark Sears, the Ohio transfer, provides a steady presence and gives 13.9 ppg, while Noah Clowney’s a freshman averaging double digits as well. Alabama returns Charles Bediako in the middle, and Jaden Bradley replaces Jaden Shackelford at the point. Nate Oats has a type when it comes to names, I guess.
If basketball is rebounding and shooting, then Alabama does it well.
They’re first in defensive rebounding, first in total rebounding, sixth in points scored, and they’ll just chuck up threes like crazy as well. Of the three losses, all by double digits, there are some things that opponents were able to do to slow down the Tide.
Brandon Miller’s going to get his points for the most part, much like us with Jabari Smith last year. You’ve got to shut down the other guys to make them one-dimensional. Noah Clowney seems to be the glue guy, and if you slow him down, you can let Miller go off but that’s all they’ve got. Not letting him and Sears work seems to disrupt their attack more than anything else, and we saw the last time Alabama played a good team on the road. They fell hard.
Oklahoma jumped up early and didn’t look back, with Alabama’s defense never finding an answer. They’ve had trouble with versatile big guys like Adamo Sanogo and Drew Timme (both elites), but Johni Broome could give them some trouble too.
It’s really tough to pick us here, but it’s at Neville, with Gameday, and we’re itching for a win. This is just the situation that Bruce Pearl loves, and I think the atmosphere holds on enough for Auburn to do it today. We probably take our lumps in a couple weeks at their place after this, but no worries. Big game from Broome, and Miller gets 25, but there’s only one other player in double figures for Bama.
Auburn 77, Alabama 74