AUBURN, Ala. – After an unexpected postponement due to a storm, Auburn returns to court at LSU on Saturday, hoping to successfully start a long run against NCAA Tournament-bound teams.
This week’s wintry weather was initially delayed, after which Auburn’s scheduled home game against Mississippi State was postponed, which may be rescheduled.
“If we had known we had a farewell week, we would have approached it a little bit differently,” said coach Auburn Bruce Pearl said. “We’ve spent Saturday, Sunday, and Monday preparing for Mississippi State, and then we find out we’re playing LSU. Then we have to get the staff together and move on quickly with LSU, which are really different teams.
“We got a chance to work on us a little bit this week, which was good. The kids got a chance to be caught up a little academically, which I think is good.”
After the LSU game, Auburn will play at home Florida and Tennessee, before traveling to Tuscaloosa on March 2 for a potential makeup game against Mississippi State.
“These last five games, four of which are scheduled because we don’t know the date of the state of Mississippi yet, will come fast and furious,” Pearl said. “Four games against NCAA Tournament teams. What I talked to our guys about is that our team doesn’t have the math right now. We are probably, in terms of teams going to the tournament, seventh in the NET in the league. .
“We would be out of the tournament at this point if it was played. Based on the math we are not good enough. What are we going to do with four teams that are good enough? Can we get to the point where the math would have made it so?” “We were eligible? That’s going to be a long one. That’s going to be hard to start at LSU. It’s definitely a goal worth fighting for.”
Looking for his fifth-series win in six meetings, Auburn (11-11, 5-8) tips LSU (6-13, 8-4) at 3:00 p.m. CT Saturday at Maravich Center on ESPN with Tom Hart and Drop Cuff to the call. Andy Burcham, Sonny Smith and Brad Law hosts the Auburn Sports Network broadcast, heard locally on 93.9 FM.
“All of our boys are excited about the matchup,” said Pearl. “You have to play every game as if it could be your last.”
JT Thor made history last Saturday with his performance in Kentucky. He became the only freshman in the past decade with at least 24 points and nine rebounds in a road race at Rupp Arena. Thor is one of only four players overall to have maintained that stat line since at least 2010, joining ETSU’s Isiah Brown, UT Arlington’s Brandon Edwards, and LSU’s Trendon Watford.
Auburn and LSU will wrap up on Tuesday for the 157th time in series history. LSU always has an 86-70 lead, but Auburn has won 12 of the last 18 going back to 2009, including four of the last five in total.
Auburn is 25-47 vs. LSU in Baton Rouge, but the two teams have split the last 10 duels at the Maravich Center. Auburn is 2-1 at LSU under head coach Bruce Pearl, achieved victories in 2015 (81-77) and 2017 (98-75). Auburn dropped a decision of 83-78 on his last trip to Baton Rouge in 2019.
Pearl is 11-6 against LSU in his career and is 2-1 vs. LSU head coach Will Wade, with all three matchups taking place at their current schools.
Last season, Auburn won a thriller against LSU at Auburn Arena, 91-90 in overtime when By McCormick hit the buzzer on a runner in the paint.
Auburn has always been one of the top-scoring teams in the SEC under head coach Bruce PearlWith 78.8 points per game, the Tigers are in fourth place in the league.
Auburn is well on its way to an average of 78 points per game for the fifth consecutive season. That was only achieved once from the 1973-74 season to the 1977-78 campaign. The Tigers scored an average of 78 points per game last season, 79.7 in 2018/19, 81.9 in 2017-18 and 80.4 in 2016-17.
Auburn has amassed five 90-point games so far this season, equaling 15th in college basketball and with Arkansas and LSU for the most in the SEC. It also tied for the 13th most 90-point games in a season in Auburn’s record books.
Auburn’s record of 90-point appearances in a single season is eight held by five teams: 2018-19, 2017-18, 1998-99, 1991-92 and 1970-71.
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