Appalachian State (1-4) at Georgia (1-4)
DATE & TIME: Friday, November 29, 5 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Stegeman Coliseum (10,523) -- Athens, Georgia. Television: CSS. Home Record: ASU 1-1, UGA 1-1. Away Record: ASU 0-3, UGA 0-0. Neutral Record: ASU 0-0, UGA 0-3. Conference Record: ASU 0-0, UGA 0-0. Series Record: UGA leads, 4-0.
GAME NOTES: The Georgia Bulldogs are set to begin a five-game homestand on Friday evening, as they welcome the Appalachian State Mountaineers to Stegeman Coliseum for a non-league clash.
Georgia has lost four in a row and is coming off a 73-65 setback to Nebraska in the third round of the Charleston Classic last Sunday afternoon. The homestand will take the Bulldogs right into their Christmas break.
Appalachian State has been idle since last Friday's 76-70 overtime setback to NC Central in Durham. The Mountaineers rallied back from a big halftime deficit in that game, but were unable to pull out the win. Their lone victory so far this season came against Division II Lees-McRae.
This bout marks the first meeting between these schools since 2002. Georgia won all four prior matchups in the head-to-head series.
Appalachian State dug itself a 14-point halftime hole against NC Central, thanks to a brutal 5-of-25 shooting effort from the floor in the opening frame. In fact, the Mountaineers did not register their first field goal until nearly seven minutes into the game. However, they went on a 9-0 run four minutes into the second half, and eventually took the lead on Frank Eaves' 3- pointer with one minute left in regulation. But the Eagles tied it back up with 10 seconds to play, then went on to win it in overtime. Tevin Baskin led the way with 23 points and a career-high 11 rebounds in the loss, while Chris Burgess matched a career-high with 16 points. Eaves finished with 14 off the bench, and Tab Hamilton scored 10 to round out the double-digit scorers.
Georgia was done in by free-throw shooting in its last contest. Nebraska converted 22-of-27 attempts (.815), while the Bulldogs were just 16-of-30 (.533) at the charity stripe. Charles Mann led Georgia scorers with 16 points in defeat, and sophomore forward Brandon Morris scored a personal-best 14 points in just his second game of the season. Marcus Thornton tallied 13 points, while Donte' Williams pulled down 12 boards. Williams and Morris are the only two holdovers from the starting lineup at the end of last season, although Thornton had started seven of nine games before a knee injury ended his 2012-13 season. Through five games, UGA is shooting 45.9 percent from the floor while averaging 74.2 points per game, up from last year's final numbers of 40.8 percent and 60.8 ppg. However, the Bulldogs are shooting just 28.8 percent from the perimeter.
The Mountaineers are just 2-21 all-time against current members of the SEC, although Georgia's start has been anything but imposing. Still, the Bulldogs should be able to pull this one out at home.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Georgia 75, Appalachian State 65
11/29 10:54:52 ET