Furman (3-5) at Auburn (3-5)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, December 15, 8 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Auburn Arena (9,121) -- Auburn, Alabama. Television: None. Home Record: Furman 3-3, Auburn 2-2. Away Record: Furman 0-2, Auburn 0-1. Neutral Record: Furman 0-0, Auburn 1-2. Conference Record: Furman 0-1, Auburn 0-0. Series Record: Auburn leads, 3-1.
GAME NOTES: The Furman Paladins step into Auburn Arena for a non-conference clash with the Auburn Tigers.
Both teams sit at 3-5 and are coming off wins in their last outing. Furman snapped a three-game slide with Sunday's 81-57 triumph over Presbyterian. It marked the Paladins' first win over a Division I opponent this season, as their previous two victories came against NAIA member Southern Wesleyan and Division II school Brevard College. The schedule won't get any easier for the Paladins, as tonight's contest kicks off a five-game road trip.
Auburn, on the other hand, is playing the fourth leg of a season-long six-game homestand. The Tigers snapped a four-game slide with a 92-42 rout over Grambling State on Tuesday night, which marked the team's largest margin of victory since the 1999-2000 season.
Auburn owns a 3-1 edge in the all-time series, although these teams have not met since the 2004-05 season.
Senior Bobby Austin was named the SoCon Player of the Week for his career-high 20-point effort against Presbyterian on Sunday. Austin was lethal from beyond the arc, knocking down 6-of-11 attempts. Freshmen Kendrec Ferrara and Stephen Croone chipped in with 13 and 10 points, respectively, with Croone also tallying nine assists and zero turnovers. Furman shot a ridiculous 15-of-32 from beyond the arc, marking the team's most 3-pointers in a game since making 15 against Samford during the 2010-11 campaign. The Paladins pulled away with 55 second-half points. On the season, Colin Reddick paces the squad with 10.8 points and 7.0 rebounds per contest. His twin brother, Charlie Reddick, is second on the team with 9.5 points and 5.6 rebounds per game.
Like Furman, the Tigers also had a big second half in their last outing as they scored 65 points after halftime, their highest total since 1993. It also marked the second-largest margin of victory for an SEC team this season, trailing only Kentucky's 52-point win over Lafayette. Noel Johnson and Jordan Price led the way with 14 points apiece, combining for 8-of-10 3-pointers. Chris Denson chipped in with 13 points, while Frankie Sullivan and Rob Chubb scored 10 apiece. Sullivan leads the SEC in scoring with 18.5 ppg and has accounted for nearly 30 percent of Auburn's offensive production. Denson (13.0 ppg) and Chubb (10.3 ppg, 7.8 rpg) are also averaging double figures, while Johnson has really come on strong of late. After missing his first 10 shot attempts of the season, Johnson now tops the SEC with a 53.3-percent success rate from beyond the arc (16-of-30).
Both of these teams capitalized on favorable matchups their last time out and enter the game with some much needed confidence. Give a slight edge to Auburn playing at home, although the Tigers cannot let Furman get hot from long range again.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Auburn 69, Furman 66
12/15 10:47:40 ET