Ole Miss (16-8) at Georgia (13-10)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 15, 4 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Stegeman Coliseum (10,523) -- Athens, Georgia. Television: FSN. Home Record: Ole Miss 10-3, UGA 11-2. Away Record: Ole Miss 4-5, UGA 2-5. Neutral Record: Ole Miss 2-0, UGA 0-3. Conference Record: Ole Miss 7-4, UGA 7-4. Series Record: Georgia leads, 66-40.
GAME NOTES: The Georgia Bulldogs will attempt to keep their winning streak alive on Saturday afternoon when they welcome the Ole Miss Rebels to Stegeman Coliseum for an SEC clash.
Ole Miss has had an impressive campaign at 16-8 overall and 7-4 in the SEC, but it has tapered off a bit of late by alternating wins with losses in each of the past six games. The Rebels most recently fell victim to a last-second 3-pointer at Alabama on Tuesday night to lose in heartbreaking fashion, 67-64, as they dipped to 4-5 on the road.
Georgia has been one of the streakiest teams in the SEC, as its current-three game winning streak has come on the heels of a three-game slide. The Bulldogs went into Mississippi State on Wednesday night and captured a convincing 75-55 triumph to improve to 13-10, and at 7-4 in the league, they are tied with Ole Miss for fourth place in the SEC. They are also an outstanding 11-2 at home.
Ole Miss has beaten Georgia on two straight occasions, including in the only meeting during the 2012-13 campaign, 84-74 in overtime on Feb. 16, 2013, but the Bulldogs still hold a 66-40 lead in the all-time series.
The Rebels climbed back from seven down at the half earlier in the week to stake claim to a small lead midway through the second stanza. However, with the game tied and the clock winding down, Alabama drained the game-winning 3- pointer as time expired. They shot only 37.5 percent from the floor, compared to 41.4 percent for the Crimson Tide, and they lost the rebounding battle, 42-34. Marshall Henderson finished with a team-high 14 points but did so on just 4-of-15 from the field. Anthony Perez poured in 13 points and LaDarius White added 10 points and eight rebounds off the bench.
Ole Miss is accustomed to much better offensive performances this season, as it nets 76.9 ppg on 42.8 percent field-goal shooting (including 8.2 3-pointers per contest at a 37 percent clip), which allows it to successfully mask the SEC's worst scoring defense (72.0 ppg). Its stellar turnover margin (+2.8) also goes a long way. Henderson drops in 19.3 ppg, and while his overall field goal percentage has not been strong (.370), his 93 3-pointers rank fourth nationally. Jarvis Summers (17.0 ppg) is much more efficient than his backcourt mate, shooting 49.4 percent from the field, including 37-of-75 from beyond the arc (.493). Aaron Jones (6.6 ppg) makes up for his low point totals with 7.0 ppg, 2.3 bpg and 1.0 spg.
Georgia faced a 14-point deficit early in the first half but climbed all the way back to take a one-point lead at intermission, and it continued its hot shooting after halftime en route to the 20-point road drudging. It outshot Mississippi State from the field, 54.3 percent to 33.9 percent, and knocked down 22-of-28 at the foul line (.786). Charles Mann filled the stat sheet with 19 points, six rebounds, five assists and three steals, Juwan Parker scored 16 points off the bench and Donte' Williams pulled down 10 rebounds.
The Bulldogs have experienced modest success on the offensive end of the floor this season, shooting 44.7 percent from the field for 70.1 ppg, but it has been enough to support their defensive effort, as they allow 67.9 ppg on just 40.4 percent shooting. They also boast a strong +5.2 rebounding margin, although their turnover margin (-2.2) and free-throw percentage (.671) are both less than impressive. Mann leads the way with 13.7 ppg, 3.0 apg and 1.2 spg. Kenny Gaines is the only other player to net in double figures with 11.6 ppg, although Nemanja Djurisic (9.9 ppg) and Brandon Morris (9.5 ppg) are both on the doorstep.
Ole Miss is clearly the more explosive offensive squad, but it has been vulnerable on the opposite end of the floor and has failed to establish itself on the road this season. Georgia may not be the flashiest bunch, but it has the hot hand and has found a way to win in Athens.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Georgia 75, Ole Miss 73
02/15 10:40:21 ET