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It’s a Good Year to be Watching Auburn Basketball – Both Men and Women

The Auburn Arena was rocking Saturday as the Auburn Men’s Basketball Team made an intense push to rally against blue blood program Kentucky. Playing without their starting center, Next Generation Judaism: How College Students and Hillel Can Help Reinvent Jewish Organizations
, the defending SEC Champs fell just short in a last second shot by Jarred Harper which would have given Auburn the win. Still it was an exciting game and it continues to be an exciting time to be an Auburn Basketball fan.  

Lost in the euphoria that surrounds the men’s basketball success has been a remarkable showing by the Auburn women. Just past the halfway point of the season, the Tigers are 15-3 after a dramatic come from behind win against Vanderbilt last week.

Auburn rallied from a 20-point deficit Thursday to upend Vanderbilt in a 72-70 road win at the Comordores’ Memorial Gym. It was just, “Unbelievable,” Auburn head coach Terri Williams-Flournoy said. “It goes back to what I’ve been trying to preach to them – it’s our defense that wins games. It’s our defense that makes our offense. When the shots aren’t falling, the game can’t just end. You’ve got to figure out how to defend and rebound.”

And defense is what earned the win as the Dores shot 61.0 percent from the floor, including a 69.2-percent of 3-pointers. But the Tigers forced 21 turnovers, converting those into 24 points.

The Tigers shot 64.7 percent in the final period to outscore Vandy 43-21 over the final 18 minutes of the game. With eight seconds to go Freshman Robyn Benton hit a free throw to put Auburn up by two; followed by Vandy’s baseline jumper at the buzzer falling short to give The Tigers a two point victory.

Although scoring leader Daisa Alexander’s 18.8 points per game average is the fourth-best in the SEC, it was The Gift Of Tai Chi
 who led the Tigers in this one with 19 points and six assists. Unique Thompson picked up her eighth double-double of the season with 16 points and 13 rebounds.

The 20-point comeback is the largest the Tigers have ever given Coach Flo and is tied for the largest deficit ever overcome in an SEC game.
 
It was Auburn’s third straight SEC road win this season and gives the Tigers a six-game road winning streak, the longest road streak in 10 years. It’s a good year to be watching Auburn basketball both men and women teams.

The women will be back in Auburn Arena this Thursday, Jan. 24 against Texas A&M. Be sure to tune to the SEC Network or better yet, if you can make the game, come out and back the Tigers in person. It’s the annual ‘We Back Pat’ game and it’s sure to be a thriller. Tip off is set for 7:30 p.m. CT. See you there.

War Eagle!

The post It’s a Good Year to be Watching Auburn Basketball – Both Men and Women appeared first on Track 'Em Tigers, Auburn's oldest and most read independent blog.

Morris goes extra mile by salting roads himself – 247Sports

Morris goes extra mile by salting roads himself  247Sports

Arkansas coach Chad Morris and the Razorback staff are hosting the first big recruiting weekend of the new year, and recruits and parents in Fayetteville got to …

Morris goes extra mile by salting roads himself – 247Sports

Morris goes extra mile by salting roads himself  247Sports

Arkansas coach Chad Morris and the Razorback staff are hosting the first big recruiting weekend of the new year, and recruits and parents in Fayetteville got to …

Morris goes extra mile by salting roads himself – 247Sports

Morris goes extra mile by salting roads himself  247Sports

Arkansas coach Chad Morris and the Razorback staff are hosting the first big recruiting weekend of the new year, and recruits and parents in Fayetteville got to …

VIP Recruiting Buzz: Saturday notes – 247Sports

VIP Recruiting Buzz: Saturday notes  247Sports

Is Auburn trending up with a key target on the offensive line?

Report: Auburn to be without key starter against Kentucky – Saturday Down South

Report: Auburn to be without key starter against Kentucky  Saturday Down South

The Auburn Tigers are ranked No. 14 in the country and have a chance to make a big statement on Saturday evening, playing host to No. 12 Kentucky. However …

Cam Newton tattoo not a result of Carolina Panthers ownership change – FanSided

Cam Newton tattoo not a result of Carolina Panthers ownership change  FanSided

Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton gets his first tattoo. When the Panthers selected Newton first overall in the 2011 NFL Draft, much was made abou…

Reserve running back Cedric Chambers enters transfer portal – 247Sports

Reserve running back Cedric Chambers enters transfer portal  247Sports

AUBURN, Alabama — Another former walkon at Auburn is looking to land more playing time at another program. Running back Cedric Chambers entered his …

Auburn support staffer joins Troy staff – 247Sports

Auburn support staffer joins Troy staff  247Sports

AUBURN, Alabama — Auburn graduate assistant Cole Weeks is following his former coach to Troy. Weeks has been elevated to an on-the-field role with the …

An Offensive Look Ahead

Who will be slinging it for the Tigers in 2019?
(Photo by Acid Reign)

     War Eagle, everybody! College football has mercifully drawn to a close, and all we can do now is look to the future. However, basketball has really geared up the past week, with Auburn pulling away from Georgia in Auburn Arena last weekend and then bombing Texas A&M by 19 points in its own gym a couple of days ago. The Big Blue of Kentucky come visiting Saturday afternoon at 3:00 PM. The game will be nationally televised on ESPN.

     Offensive questions have become the norm in recent years as Auburn has seen its share of shaky quarterbacking and a revolving door of running backs. Several major pieces of the offense from the past couple of seasons have departed, and there are some holes to fill. Leaving early for the NFL draft are quarterback Jarrett Stidham and receiver Darius Slayton. That pair hooked up for some dynamite plays the past couple of years. A 4-year starter at H-back, Chandler Cox, has exhausted his eligibility as well.

     The past couple of years, Auburn’s offensive success has mirrored the play of the offensive line. When the line misses assignments or gets whipped, Auburn’s offense goes nowhere. When the line gels, records can be set such as Auburn’s 63-point outburst in the Music City Bowl a few weeks ago. On the line, the only departing seniors are Tucker Brown and Ryan Meneely. All the guys that started games last season return, and frankly, this unit really came together late in the season. I am eager to see what another year of conditioning and work does for them. Auburn isn’t as deep on the line as it has been in the past decade, but I expect some major position battles this spring and summer.

     Center Kaleb Kim will be a returning senior, and Nick Brahms will be a sophomore. I expect a battle there as Brahms was thrown into the fire last year a little too early. Senior guards Mike Horton and Marquell Harrell return, but there are some good sophomores behind them, looking to take away a starting spot. Calvin Ashley and Austin Troxell can both play inside or out. At left tackle, senior Prince Tega Wanagho passed on an NFL opportunity to return. On the right side, Jack Driscoll should be back. I had mistakenly pegged him as a departing senior in 2018, but I was wrong. I’m glad I fact-checked with the official Auburn roster! Again, Ashley and Troxell are the biggest threats behind Wanagho and Driscoll.

     Despite the loss of Darius Slayton and Ryan Davis, Auburn returns a lot of talent at the receiver spots. I figure that sophomore Seth Williams will lock down one starting spot. He took over about midseason last year, was Auburn’s most consistent set of hands, and has great size and speed. Auburn gets veterans Eli Stove and Will Hastings back from injury, and they’ll be pressed by younger talent, including Anthony Schwartz, Shedrick Jackson, Marquis McClain, and Matthew Hill. There is a lot of speed on display, in this unit.

     As is the case in most years, I’m very concerned about the tight end and H-back spots. The only listed tight ends on Auburn’s roster that will return are senior Sal Cannella and sophomore John Samuel Schenker. Cannella was really used more as a big receiver than a tight end in 2018. Schenker played a good bit and is a bigger body. Senior Spencer Nigh is the only returning H-back on the current roster. I’m reading where Auburn may be able to sign Arizona State grad-transfer Jay Jay Wilson and that he might be able to start immediately. I’m not sure about that guess. Wilson missed last season with an injury and some off-the-field troubles and played linebacker in 2017. I see Schenker and Nigh starting because that’s really all the bodies Auburn has at this point.

     The running back group is good sized and looks dangerous heading into 2019. It’s mainly just a matter of finding lead blockers to open up the running game. I figure senior Kam Martin and sophomore JaTarvious Whitlow will battle for the starting job and may end up co-starting. Both are very dangerous when healthy. Sophomore Shaun Shivers and junior Malik Miller had their moments last season, as well. Shivers is a speedy guy who plays bigger than he really is. Miller fits the role of a big bruiser back with surprisingly good receiving skills. Redshirt freshman Harold Joiner will likely get a good look this spring.

     The biggest question mark headed into spring is at quarterback. An offense is usually dictated by the abilities of its quarterback, and we do not know who that will be. Junior Malik Willis returns with the most experience and playing time, but he’s really not been allowed to pass much. We know he has great speed. We got a chance to see redshirt freshman Joey Gatewood in the bowl game. He also is a speedy runner with good size. Transfer Cord Sandberg is another veteran presence we saw a bit of against Alabama State. Finally, some folks think that incoming freshman Bo Nix will win the starting job. He is enrolling early and will go through spring drills. Nix is the top-rated dual threat quarterback coming out of high school, this year.

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Georgia QB commit: Interest from Auburn ‘pretty strong’ – 247Sports

Georgia QB commit: Interest from Auburn ‘pretty strong’  247Sports

When Auburn first started recruiting John Rhy Plumlee, the Tigers offered the 4-star recruit from Hattiesburg (Miss.) Oak Grove as a slot receiver. But when …

Georgia QB commit: Interest from Auburn ‘pretty strong’ – 247Sports

Georgia QB commit: Interest from Auburn ‘pretty strong’  247Sports

When Auburn first started recruiting John Rhy Plumlee, the Tigers offered the 4-star recruit from Hattiesburg (Miss.) Oak Grove as a slot receiver. But when …

Friday Quickies: On the Road Again Edition – A Sea Of Blue

Friday Quickies: On the Road Again Edition  A Sea Of Blue

The Cats travel to Auburn to prove if the are Road Warriors, Mel Kiper Jr. has Josh Allen high on his board, and John Wick has me in my feelings.

Cats Look To Tame The Tigers Saturday At Auburn – WUKY

Cats Look To Tame The Tigers Saturday At Auburn  WUKY

The Kentucky Wildcats are coming off an impressive 20 point road win over the Georgia Bulldogs and now they’re heading further south to take on an even.

Auburn women’s basketball earns road SEC win against Vanderbilt

NASHVILLE – Auburn completed one of the biggest comebacks in school history Thursday night, rallying from a 20-point third-quarter deficit to earn a 72-70 win over Vanderbilt at Memorial Gym.

NFL draft early-entry deadline: College winners and losers – WLS-TV

NFL draft early-entry deadline: College winners and losers  WLS-TV

Oregon QB Justin Herbert returning was reason for the Ducks to celebrate. The news wasn’t as good for teams like Penn State and Georgia.

The 2019 Way-Too-Early Top 25 – WLS-TV

The 2019 Way-Too-Early Top 25  WLS-TV

Clemson is the new king, but Alabama will be back, along with Georgia, Ohio State and Notre Dame, while a couple of teams from Texas elbow their way into the …

Auburn adds Akron to 2021 football schedule – FBSchedules.com

Auburn adds Akron to 2021 football schedule  FBSchedules.com

The Auburn Tigers have added the Akron Zips to their 2021 football schedule, both schools announced on Thursday.

Auburn announces future home game against Akron – Saturday Down South

Auburn announces future home game against Akron  Saturday Down South

Akron’s commitment to feature a loaded non-conference football schedule continues as the Zips have agreed to travel to Auburn looking ahead to the 2021 …

Auburn announces future home game against Akron – Saturday Down South

Auburn announces future home game against Akron  Saturday Down South

Akron’s commitment to feature a loaded non-conference football schedule continues as the Zips have agreed to travel to Auburn looking ahead to the 2021 …

Interesting Tidbits on Recruiting, Basketball, and Finishing Degrees

Time for your Thursday bits. Pretend to work this afternoon by catching up on all of the latest Auburn news you need to know.

– Catch up on the latest recruiting news ahead of National Signing Day.

– One future Auburn player is Alabama’s Mr. Football. Another is proving doubters wrong.

– See which Auburn players will be on display at the Reese’s Senior Bowl.

– If you haven’t seen how Ryan Davis is doing at Shrine Game practices, find out here, and here.

– AL.com continued their ratings of Auburn position groups. See if you agree: O Line, D Line, Safeties, Corners, Special Teams, and Linebackers.

– Someone else with Auburn connections is heading to coach at Troy.

– Men’s Basketball continues to bounce back with a road win against Texas A&M. Highlights here.

– Also, Bryce Brown is good at basketball.

– See where Softball is picked to finish in the SEC.

– Back to school, Auburn legend Tim Hudson returning to finish his degree.

 

Let me know if I missed anything in the comments below, and check out the BlogleSpot on Periscope.

Tigers Get Critical Road Win Ahead of Kentucky

Perhaps the only major knock on Bruce Pearl’s Auburn basketball team has been itsr inability to show up on the road. There is no doubting they rank among the sport’s elite, but the one thing that has plagued the Tigers even before this year was poor road play.

Typically, fans that haven’t followed the program in depth would more likely to pinpoint a symptom of the struggles such as poor shooting from beyond the arc rather than the overall issue. It hadn’t escaped Pearl, and it was obvious that he had the Tigers prepared to play in a tough road environment Wednesday in College Station, Texas. 

ESPNU did a fine job covering the Texas A&M yell leaders and all of their unique cheers. However, it was not because of the effect it had on Auburn’s performance, but because the game was so out of hand that it was the only thing that was compelling. 

Auburn never trailed in this contest with the game only being knotted up twice: when the Aggies tied it at 2–2 and 4–4. The Tigers held a 48–32 lead at half and a 65–44 lead at one point midway in the second half. The Aggies did close the gap, so to speak, as Auburn was incredibly sloppy after playing a fine-tuned game for most of the contest. The sloppiness led Pearl to leave the starters in for more minutes than one might expect during a blowout. The game ended at 85–66 on the road against a team that had just won a road victory in Tuscaloosa. 

Bryce Brown was surface-of-the-sun hot for the closing moments of the first half. Brown scored 19 consecutive points, which represented the vast majority of his 22 total points, 20 of which came in the first half onslaught. Brown finished with 5–11 shooting from long range, hitting an astounding four straight shots in the first half. Brown was easily the headliner, but there were a lot of other highlights from the Tigers.

It might have been Brown’s deluge of long balls that blew the game open, but it was Anfernee McLemore’s 3–3 sharp-shooting to start the game that fanned the flame for Brown’s big night. McLemore came off the bench for starter Austin Wiley; ultimately played five more minutes (19 total) and outscored the big man 13–4. Wiley wasn’t unheard from, however, as he out-rebounded everyone on the floor with 12 boards while adding a block.

As if he had read a comment I had just made on Twitter about not being a block player, Chuma Okeke found a rhythm in the second half by posting up in the paint and looking like a legit big man. On a night when he was 0–3 from downtown, Chuma boxed out and used a natural looking hook shot to score several two-point buckets. He hit five of eight shots inside the arc to finish with ten points, two steals, seven boards and an assist. Long range struggles aside, it was the most complete game I can recall from him.

Jared Harper’s efforts may have been overshadowed as he tossed in 17 points and had six assists on 4–9 shooting from three-point range. However, he had another off night at the line, going 1–3 while adding three turnovers. 

Auburn was able to work in several reserve players, but there was one particular player that continues to get zero minutes …

More on the Tigers’ big road win over Texas A&M  after the jump.

After logging minuscule minutes after his year-long suspension, Danjel Purifoy hasn’t seen the hardwood since the start of SEC play. There is no doubt that he is a more talented player than anyone on Auburn’s bench, and while he may not be in game shape to take over for someone like Malik Dunbar, it is surprising to see him not logging time at all. 

Obviously, something has developed between Purifoy and the coaching staff. Still, as frustrating as it has to be for No. 3, he has to remember that he is playing for one of, if not the best, coache, in college basketball, and he has to do things the right way. That will be a hard decision in a society that doesn’t believe in waiting one’s turn. 

Up next is the premier matchup at home, or at least until Tennessee comes calling at the of the season. Kentucky and the Big Blue Nation descend upon the Plains this Saturday at 3:00 PM. This marks another return visit of Tony Barbee, the much ridiculed former Auburn head coach. Auburn has defeated the Wildcats their last two visits to Auburn Arena. 

Jared Harper led the way with 18 points in Auburn’s 76–66 win against Kentucky last year. Harper can take over games  when he has to, but it would be a shocker for him to do that against a Kentucky program that isn’t quite where it usually is.

According to ESPN’s BPI, Auburn is a 69-percent favorite to win this contest. The ‘Cats are obviously talented and well rounded, getting production from multiple players. Point guard Keldon Johnson leads the team with nearly 15 points per game. He turns over the ball a fair amount, and Auburn is one of the best in the nation at turning teams over and scoring. 

The Wildcats are on a bit of a scoring slide. Despite winning both of their last two contests, they’ve done it without scoring over 70, and Johnson scored zero points in the win against Georgia.

As usual, anticipate Bryce Brown to D-up Johnson. Four different Kentucky players score in double digits, so Auburn will need an all-around performance on defense. Expect Anfernee McLemore to be the linchpin in an Auburn win.

The game tips off at 3:00 PM on a premier spot on ESPN.

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Highlights of Auburn’s 85-66 Win Over Texas A&M

Auburn lead wire-to-wire, and after Bryce Brown’s 20 points in the first (19 of them in a row), the 2nd half was a formality. Auburn is much better than Texas A&M, and it was apparent.

About Last Night: Auburn 85, Texas A&M 66 – College and Magnolia

About Last Night: Auburn 85, Texas A&M 66  College and Magnolia

A quiet arena, a sloppy and inexperienced opponent, and a return to what makes Auburn such a good basketball team were all things that we saw last night as …

NFL Draft deadline winners and losers – 247Sports

NFL Draft deadline winners and losers  247Sports

The NFL declaration deadline passed with plenty of surprises. None bigger came than that of Kyler Murray, who entered his name into the pool even with his pro …

Auburn G Bryce Brown calls out Texas A&M’s lack of effort on defense – Saturday Down South

Auburn G Bryce Brown calls out Texas A&M’s lack of effort on defense  Saturday Down South

The Auburn Tigers went into College Station on Wednesday night and picked up a big 85-66 win over a struggling Texas A&M squad. Leading the way for the …

Backup receiver adds name to NCAA transfer portal – 247Sports

Backup receiver adds name to NCAA transfer portal  247Sports

Auburn backup receiver Griffin King has entered the NCAA’s transfer portal in an attempt to land at another school and play one season. King played sparingly …

Kameron Brown out to prove his doubters wrong – 247Sports

Kameron Brown out to prove his doubters wrong  247Sports

SUGAR HILL, GEORGIA — When Auburn offered linebacker/fullback Kameron Brown of Lanier High two weeks ago, it was “uplifting,” Brown told Auburn …

Kameron Brown out to prove his doubters wrong – 247Sports

Kameron Brown out to prove his doubters wrong  247Sports

SUGAR HILL, GEORGIA — When Auburn offered linebacker/fullback Kameron Brown of Lanier High two weeks ago, it was “uplifting,” Brown told Auburn …

Way-too-early depth chart projections for 2019 Tigers: Defense – 247Sports

Way-too-early depth chart projections for 2019 Tigers: Defense  247Sports

GoTigers247 takes a way-too-early look ahead at what Memphis’ 2019 depth chart could look like.

Ranking Alabama’s 5 toughest games in 2019 – 247Sports

Ranking Alabama’s 5 toughest games in 2019  247Sports

Will Alabama finish the regular season unbeaten for the second straight year in 2019?

Former Auburn star Ryan Pugh hired as Troy OC – 247Sports

Former Auburn star Ryan Pugh hired as Troy OC  247Sports

Former Auburn offensive lineman Ryan Pugh is coming back home. Pugh accepted the offensive coordinator position on former Auburn offensive coordinator …

Mr Alabama Football Wants to Help Auburn Win a National Championship

On Tuesday Auburn quarterback signee Molecular Pathogenesis and Treatment of Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia
 became the 11th Auburn signee to win “Mr. Football” for the state of Alabama. The state’s top prep award caps off over a half dozen national and state honors by the incoming freshman, including The Gatorade Alabama Player of the Year.

The Pinson Valley graduate was the 2017 runner up but won the honor this year after a senior season that saw him amass 4,224 yards and 57 touchdowns with 50 of those scores coming through the air. He set the state record for total offense with 12,505 career yards and also holds the record for career touchdowns with 161.

Nix led the Indians to back-to-back Class 6A state championships with this year’s state title being won in Jordan-Hare Stadium where his father, Patrick, became an instant Cultiver le bonheur pour les Nuls en BD (French Edition)
.

The Under Armour All-American is already enrolled at Auburn and is expected to battle Information Systems Assurance – 2nd Edition
, Joey Gatewood, Cord Sandberg, and, possibly, Oklahoma transfer Austin Kendall to be the starter in 2019. Kendall who has two years of eligibility left is visiting Auburn this week.

It will be pretty tough competition for the incoming freshman with or without Kendall in the mix. Prior to Malik Willis being named No. 2 last year, many expected Gatewood to win that role as he drew comparisons to Cam Newton. That was before the rising sophomore was sideline by injury. However, Nix is ranked as the No. 1 dual-threat quarterback in the nation by 247 Sports, and he is coming in with a lot of confidence.  

“The guys that are up there are great quarterbacks,” said Nix. “But I think that I can come and, hopefully, compete with them and leave everything else for the coaching staff … I [just] want to go in there and help do whatever I can to win a national championship.”

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Georgia Bulldogs won’t be ready for primetime until they upgrade guard play – DawgNation

Georgia Bulldogs won’t be ready for primetime until they upgrade guard play  DawgNation

ATHENS — Not quite ready for primetime. That’s all you can say about Georgia Bulldogs at the moment. The players want it. The fans want it. Tom Crean wants it …

Mississippi State basketball lunchtime links: Bulldogs need win vs. Florida Gators – Maroon and White Nation

Mississippi State basketball lunchtime links: Bulldogs need win vs. Florida Gators  Maroon and White Nation

Get ready for the game tonight as the Mississippi State basketball team absolutely needs to take down the Florida Gators.

Winners and losers from the NFL draft early-entry deadline – ESPN

Winners and losers from the NFL draft early-entry deadline  ESPN

Oregon QB Justin Herbert returning was reason for the Ducks to celebrate. The news wasn’t as good for teams like Penn State and Georgia.

Upon Further Review: Tigers Bounced Back Against UGA

Auburn fans were mystified by what happened last week when the Tigers opened SEC play in The Pavilion against Ole Miss. Sitting at No. 11 in the country, the Tigers held a 65 percent chance to beat Ole Miss, according to the ESPN BPI. However, Auburn came out flat after an 11-day layover and never led the Rebels. 

Coach Bruce Pearl isn’t one to make excuses and typically puts the onus exactly where it belongs. Despite usually holding his team accountable, he spoke about the effects of such a long layover between Auburn’s last nonconference game and the SEC opener. There’s no doubt that being the last team in the SEC to start conference play hurt and that it is nearly impossible to replicate game situations. Still, Auburn didn’t just look like a team needing to get back in the swing of things, the team looked lost.

That was most evident in the front court where Auburn should be one of the best teams in the country. This conversation should start and end with Austin Wiley, supposedly a legitimate NBA first rounder. Pearl, understandably, brought Wiley along slowly at the beginning of the year, but when it was time for the big man to shine, he didn’t just look out of place for a potential NBA player, he looked lost as an SEC center. 

Sure, Auburn wasn’t good from beyond the arc as the Tigers went a combined 36 percent. They were even worse from inside the arc and in the paint, where Wiley and Anfernee McLemore were a combined 0–8 and Horace Spencer was 2–4 off the bench. Auburn had just six points in the paint all game. The Tigers desperately needed to recover from a combined 9–28 three-point stat from guards Bryce Brown and Jared Harper. Brown sank seven long balls, but he was essentially chunking up prayers late in the game.

There were other struggles, namely the Tigers 9–17 stat from the charity stripe. Still, even if Auburn hit those other eight free throws, they still wouldn’t have won. Credit the Ole Miss staff for implementing a fantastic game plan that kept Auburn’s guards from never having the ability to get a clean look from the outside. The Rebels put tremendous pressure on Auburn’s guards as they crossed in to their half-court offense.

Going into this game, the average fan would say that Auburn’s front court, with its talent and depth, should be good enough to take care of that kind of pressure. Yet the big men, Wiley in particular, have had tremendous trouble in handling the basketball and being out-timed on the boards. Without the big men able to control the paint, Auburn fell by 15.

The SEC is off to a strange start as Ole Miss took down No. 15 Mississippi State, and Bama took down Kentucky. There were upsets throughout the NCAA this weekend, and Auburn’s bounce back against UGA likely will help keep the Tigers from dropping too far in the rankings.

Welcoming Georgia for the home SEC opener inside Auburn Arena, the Tigers put on a show for fans as they laid a 93–78 second half beatdown on the ‘Dogs.

Auburn cleaned up almost all of the issues that plagued it against Ole Miss, starting with a 12–25 three-point stat, good enough for 47 percent. The Tigers shot a 76 percent mark from the line on a 14–17 performance. Inside the arc, the Tigers were a much improved 34–68. The trio of Wiley, McLemore and Spencer were 12–20.

More on Tiger beatdown of UGA after the jump.

Auburn led UGA in offensive rebounds, 17–12. The Auburn guard duo of Harper and Brown led the way with Harper’s 22 being tops. Brown’s 15 was a typical effort, but he was matched by McLemore, who led Auburn with 9 rebounds and 2 blocks. 

While he didn’t start for the Tigers, he out played Wiley once again. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see McLemore earn a start. 

Up next is Texas A&M as it welcomes Auburn to Reed Arena on Wednesday. 

Billy Kennedy’s 2018-2019 squad is struggling as it has posted a 1–2 record in conference and a 7–7 overall mark. Sophomore TJ Starks leads the Aggies. The struggles of the Aggies are obvious as a quick look at Stark’s stats shows a fairly mediocre player leading TAMU. He is a high-volume shooter, having taken no less than 12 shots in his last five contests, but averages about 15. He shoots just 25 percent from beyond the arc and just 37 percent from inside the arc. However, he is a decent free throw shooter. But Auburn will be fine as long as Bryce Brown can make him take contested shots from the outside and Auburn’s big men can cleanly protect the rim. 

Of course, Auburn has a way of  bringing out the best in its opponents, and it isn’t usually the lead man for the club. Bryce Brown has typically done a fantastic job of shutting down hot-shooting guards, but opponents have managed to have a secondary player have a phenomenal day.

In its buzzer-beater win against Alabama on Saturday, TAMU’s junior forward Josh Nebo hit 21 points. Nebo couldn’t miss with 10–12 shooting and four blocks. It was an amazing performance for a guy who had just 12 points in his last three games, although he has been an effective rim protector. 

TAMU let Alabama’s John Petty come off the bench and do what he has done to Auburn: knock down three after three. Petty was 6–11 and paced a poor outside performance by the Tide. Will Bryce Brown and Jared Harper be able to exploit the Aggies from the outside? Probably. But that isn’t the player that Auburn really needs to catch fire. 

Chuma Okeke is a stretch player that can do it all, but he has just nine points in the two conference games thus far. He has a nine-game streak with at least one block. However, he is averaging almost as many fouls than points the last two games and needs to have a break-out performance.

Obviously, the super athletic McLemore is a key to an Auburn win as he is able to play multiple positions and do so with style.

The Tiger player to watch is Malik Dunbar, who has quietly had three straight 11-point performances and scored in double digits in four out of the last five games. Sure, Malik had some bone-headed moments, such as an air-ball free throw or three-point attempt (or two). But no player tries to make a positive impact quite like Dunbar. He has an almost LeBron James physicality to him at 6′ 6″, 230 pounds. He gets to the rim. He gets to the line. He can hit the long ball. And, he is doing it in under 20 minutes of game time. If Auburn can get into a position with a decent lead late, Dunbar can shut the game down and frequently does it with a rim-rocking dunk.

The Tigers and Aggies tip off at 6:00 PM on ESPNU. 

The post Upon Further Review: Tigers Bounced Back Against UGA appeared first on Track 'Em Tigers, Auburn's oldest and most read independent blog.

Alabama Auto Loan Debt | On Your Debt – courierjournal

Alabama Auto Loan Debt | On Your Debt  courierjournal

Regardless of the category, Alabama has a habit of being ranked at the top. The Heart of Dixie usually holds the bragging rights of being home to the #1 …

Alabama Auto Loan Debt | On Your Debt – courierjournal

Alabama Auto Loan Debt | On Your Debt  courierjournal

Regardless of the category, Alabama has a habit of being ranked at the top. The Heart of Dixie usually holds the bragging rights of being home to the #1 …

UF remains after Auburn commit – 247Sports

UF remains after Auburn commit  247Sports

Florida visits the high school of a high-profile SEC commit.

Former Auburn offensive coordinator Chip Lindsey announces hires at Troy

TROY – New Troy head football coach Chip Lindsey announced the hiring of his coordinators on Monday afternoon – one a promotion from Neal Brown’s staff and the other a former All-American lineman at Auburn.

Utah Extends Series with BYU through 2024 – Block U

Utah Extends Series with BYU through 2024  Block U

The Utah Utes have announced two additional games in the football series against the rival BYU Cougars in 2023 and 2024. With these games announced, …

White House offers Clemson Tigers fast food feast in championship celebration – ESPN

White House offers Clemson Tigers fast food feast in championship celebration  ESPN

With no one to cook a feast because of the government shutdown, President Donald Trump served up fast food when Clemson visited to celebrate its national …

LOOK: Big-name transfer QB appears to be visiting Auburn – Saturday Down South

LOOK: Big-name transfer QB appears to be visiting Auburn  Saturday Down South

The Auburn Tigers will have to replace QB Jarrett Stidham for the 2019 season, and have some interesting options like Joey Gatewood, Malik Willis, Bo Nix and …

Inside Auburn’s struggles away from Auburn Arena – 247Sports

Inside Auburn’s struggles away from Auburn Arena  247Sports

Auburn’s 3-point shooting struggles on the road are clear.

Interesting Tidbits on Recruiting, Walk-Ons, and Gymnastics

It’s a relatively light news day overall, but there are still interesting tidbits you need to help get you through Monday.

– A football coach has a new role. Catch up on what that means for the Tigers going forward.

– A former Auburn great is also returning to join Gus Malzahn’s staff.

– February’s signing day is fast approaching. Take a look at how Auburn’s class stacks up, as well as where we can improve.

– See which player is leaning towards Auburn.

– If you like watching Auburn players in the NFL combine, you’ll get to see one of our best this year in Indy.

– Speaking of the NFL, check out this analysis of how good Dee Ford has been.

– Men’s basketball got back on track against Georgia. Highlights of the win can be found here.

– Even with the win, Auburn slid in this week’s AP poll.

– The only thing you really need to see is this heartwAUrming video of  two walk-ons receiving scholarships.

– Gymnastics school! Find out how Gymnastics made history this weekend, including that Derrian Gobourne is a bad woman. Full highlights here.

– See where baseball ranks in the D1Baseball Preseason Top 25.

– Finally, consummate Auburn man Cody Parkey discusses his tipped field goal on the Today Show.

 

Let me know if I missed anything in the comments below.

Monday Musings: Taming Dogs Edition

If you’re an Auburn fan few things feel better than a dominating win over your oldest rival. The men’s basketball team did that Saturday in a 93–78 victory over Georgia.

It was evident that Bruce Pearl had worked his Tigers on the inside game after Auburn struggled in the paint in a road loss at Ole Miss. And, it resulted in a hammering of Georgia. The Tigers only scored 12 in the paint in Oxford but put up 40 points there Saturday.

The feel-good story of the game belonged to Anfernee McLemore. The junior made a spectacular return from a season ending injury to block shots, grab nine rebounds, and score 15 points—all in the paint.

More changes to the Auburn football staff.

Following Chip Lindsey’s departure for Kansas (and later Troy), My Liar: A Novel
announced over the weekend that running backs and special teams coach Tim Horton would be reassigned to an off-field position. Lindsey had said he was ready to make a change, but there’s no news as to why this switch is being made.

Every coach has the right to make staff adjustments, however, this move is a head scratcher. Horton is a popular coach both among the players and on the recruiting trail. He’s coached 10 different 1,000-yard rushers and nine All-SEC running backs, including Heisman finalist Working With Immigrant Families: A Practical Guide for Counselors (Family Therapy and Counseling)
and Arkansas’ Darren McFadden. And he is the only coach in SEC history to have both a running back and special-teams player to be named All-SEC.

Now that Malzahn will be his own offensive coordinator he may have plans for Horton to help with administrative off-the-field issues since he lost Why Do We Always Come Back to This?
to Georgia Tech last week. Suddes headed up Auburn’s recruiting, an administrative area that Horton has experience.

Speaking of off-the-field changes, Gus announced he was adding former Auburn All American and first round draft choice, Kendall Simmons,to his staff. The hire has the potential to pay big dividends for the program. The two-time Super Bowl offensive guard will have a positive influence on the Tigers’ O-line.

You’ve got to be happy for former Auburn linebacker Dee Ford.

In Kansas City’s NFL playoff win over Indianapolis Sunday, Dee Ford had two quarterback hits, forced a fumble, and made four tackles, including a sack of the quarterback on the first play of the game.

And now another Auburn linebacker is getting set to make a big impact on the NFL. Yesterday Deshaun Davis was accepted to the NFL combine.

Auburn recruiting class currently ranks 12th nationally.

As we get closer to National Signing Day recruiting is getting more attention. After five top-10 recruiting classes in the last six years, Auburn is poised to bring in another stellar group.  

It would be nice to see Auburn bring in a running back or two and shore up the offensive line. The early signing period didn’t leave many O-line prospects available, but three-star Kamaar Bell of Colquitt County, Ga., who is considering Auburn along with Florida, says Auburn is in the lead.  

Saturday, the Tigers hosted five players, including Bell and Jamious Griffin, the nation’s No.21 RB prospect. The Rome, Ga. native is currently committed to NC State, but sources say the Tigers made an impact on the four-star running back. Can he be flipped? That’s one of the questions we’ll be waiting for an answer to on February 6th.

The post Monday Musings: Taming Dogs Edition appeared first on Track 'Em Tigers, Auburn's oldest and most read independent blog.

Highlights of Auburn’s 93-78 Win Over Georgia

Auburn bounced back in their home SEC opener with a big win against Georgia. It was fun to see threes fall AND layups happen, too.

Auburn Gymnastics Upsets #4 LSU

Auburn Gymnastics pulled off an upset for the ages Friday evening as they beat #4 LSU.

Deep Cuts: Hardwood Edition – College and Magnolia

Deep Cuts: Hardwood Edition  College and Magnolia

By popular demand, I attempt to present some of Auburn’s best plays from the Tigers win over Georgia on Saturday.

Monday Quickies: Proving Ground Edition – A Sea Of Blue

Monday Quickies: Proving Ground Edition  A Sea Of Blue

Big week for Cats, UK Hoops drop a home game, NFL Playoffs, True Detective is back, and I fanboy over the new GoT trailer.

Kentucky Wildcats Basketball must up its game as SEC schedule kicks it up a notch – A Sea Of Blue

Kentucky Wildcats Basketball must up its game as SEC schedule kicks it up a notch  A Sea Of Blue

The Kentucky Wildcats have to take their game to another level if they’re going to survive their upcoming schedule.

Complete Guide to the 2019 College Football Offseason – Bleacher Report

Complete Guide to the 2019 College Football Offseason  Bleacher Report

Sure, the 2018 season is officially in the books and Clemson is celebrating its second championship in three years, but college football never really ends…

Digging deep on Clemson 2018 versus FSU 2013 – Daily Press

Digging deep on Clemson 2018 versus FSU 2013  Daily Press

Comparing remarkable ACC football teams based on stats, All-Americans and quality of opposition.

Deshaun Davis receives invite to NFL Combine – 247Sports

Deshaun Davis receives invite to NFL Combine  247Sports

AUBURN, Alabama — Auburn’s tackles leader is headed to the NFL Combine. Former Auburn linebacker Deshaun Davis, an outgoing senior, received an …

Auburn DL Jaunta’vius Johnson transfers to Colorado – Ralphie Report

Auburn DL Jaunta’vius Johnson transfers to Colorado  Ralphie Report

The Colorado Buffaloes have secured the committment of nose tackle Jaunta’vius Johnson, a graduate transfer from Auburn, according to Adam Munsterteiger.

NCAA.com debuts too early 2019 CFB rankings – 247Sports

NCAA.com debuts too early 2019 CFB rankings  247Sports

Everyone has an opinion on how the Top 25 should shake out when rankings begin for the 2019 college football season. That includes the NCAA.com team …

5-star OT visiting Auburn – 247Sports

5-star OT visiting Auburn  247Sports

One of the top 2020 offensive linemen in the country has arrived at Auburn for a Sunday unofficial visit. Broderick Jones, a… “>247Sports · CBS Sports Digital …

WATCH Georgia basketball coach Tom Crean: ‘It comes down to hustle points’ – DawgNation

WATCH Georgia basketball coach Tom Crean: ‘It comes down to hustle points’  DawgNation

AUBURN, Ala. — Georgia basketball coach Tom Crean can see the improvement, right before his eyes. “We’ve gotten better this week, and we had moments …

Auburn great Kendall Simmons returns for off-field role – 247Sports

Auburn great Kendall Simmons returns for off-field role  247Sports

AUBURN, Alabama — Former Auburn offensive lineman Kendall Simmons is returning to the Plains in an off-the-field job. Auburn did not confirm what position …

Auburn hammers Georgia in SEC bounceback – 247Sports

Auburn hammers Georgia in SEC bounceback  247Sports

Auburn kept its double-digit halftime lead alive in the second half.

Auburn football: Horton out as running backs coach – Journal Review

Auburn football: Horton out as running backs coach  Journal Review

AUBURN — The coach who oversaw a rushing attack that produced a 1000-yard running back every season from 2013-18 will not serve in the same role at …

Auburn football: Horton out as running backs coach – Perry County Republic Monitor

Auburn football: Horton out as running backs coach  Perry County Republic Monitor

AUBURN — The coach who oversaw a rushing attack that produced a 1000-yard running back every season from 2013-18 will not serve in the same role at …

Auburn football: Horton out as running backs coach – Manhattan Mercury

Auburn football: Horton out as running backs coach  Manhattan Mercury

AUBURN — The coach who oversaw a rushing attack that produced a 1000-yard running back every season from 2013-18 will not serve in the same role at …

Auburn football: Horton out as running backs coach – NorthcentralPa.com

Auburn football: Horton out as running backs coach  NorthcentralPa.com

AUBURN — The coach who oversaw a rushing attack that produced a 1000-yard running back every season from 2013-18 will not serve in the same role at …

Auburn football: Horton out as running backs coach – Iosco County News Herald

Auburn football: Horton out as running backs coach  Iosco County News Herald

AUBURN — The coach who oversaw a rushing attack that produced a 1000-yard running back every season from 2013-18 will not serve in the same role at …

Auburn running backs coach Tim Horton is out – 247Sports

Auburn running backs coach Tim Horton is out  247Sports

AUBURN, Alabama — Auburn is searching for a new running backs coach. Longtime running backs coach Tim Horton has been reassigned to an off-the-field …

Auburn Football: 5 Fixes for make-or-break 2019 for Gus Malzahn – Saturday Blitz

Auburn Football: 5 Fixes for make-or-break 2019 for Gus Malzahn  Saturday Blitz

Auburn Football crumbled under the weight of expectations, putting Gus Malzahn squarely on the hot seat. What must be done for him to maintain his post?

Sporting News ranks LSU No. 7 in pre-preseason top 25 – 247Sports

Sporting News ranks LSU No. 7 in pre-preseason top 25  247Sports

With the college football season wrapped up, several publications have released their early rankings for 2019. The Sporting News’ Bill Bender recently dropped …

No. 17 Auburn gymnastics takes down No. 4 LSU in front of sellout crowd

It was a historic night for the No. 17 Auburn gymnastics team Friday as they took down No. 4 LSU, 196.670-196.625, in front of a sellout crowd at Auburn Arena. It’s tied for the biggest win in program history and…

How each program can make 2019 better than 2018 – 247Sports

How each program can make 2019 better than 2018  247Sports

New year, new football program. That’s the saying, right? With a new calendar year comes hope that we can better ourselves, but more importantly that our …

How each program can make 2019 better than 2018 – 247Sports

How each program can make 2019 better than 2018  247Sports

New year, new football program. That’s the saying, right? With a new calendar year comes hope that we can better ourselves, but more importantly that our …

Updated Jalen Hurts transfer destinations, latest rumors – 247Sports

Updated Jalen Hurts transfer destinations, latest rumors  247Sports

Follow along with the Jalen Hurts saga here with 247Sports.

Updated Jalen Hurts transfer destinations, latest rumors – 247Sports

Updated Jalen Hurts transfer destinations, latest rumors  247Sports

Alabama quarterback Jalen Hurts has, for all intents and purposes, become the biggest name on the NCAA transfer market after he entered the NCAA’s Transfer …

A Defensive Look Ahead

Marlon Davidson was starting more than 2 years ago
(Photo by Acid Reign)

     War Eagle, everybody! College football has mercifully drawn to a close, and all we can do now is look to the future. I’d much rather do that than ruminate on a pretty lackluster Auburn men’s basketball performance at Ole Miss. Auburn’s big men just could not handle passes and put up decent shots. However, the Auburn women’s team is playing well, and the ladies knocked off Alabama at Coleman Coliseum! Nice job!

     I was quite worried this month, thinking about what would be left of the Auburn defense after graduation and the NFL draft were finished with it. As it has turned out, only cornerback Jamel Dean opted to go out early of the entire defense! Dean will be missed. He was Auburn’s best all-around cornerback, with speed, agility, and the size and reach to match up with any receiver.

     Auburn will lose senior defensive tackles Dontavius Russell and Andrew Williams to graduation. However, Derrick Brown returns, and he’ll be joined by a host of tackles who have played meaningful minutes. The list includes Tyrone Truesdale, Daquan Newkirk and Coynis Miller Jr. If needed, buck Nick Coe can move in and play an interior position, as well. At end, Marlon Davidson will be back, and he has been a 3-year starter. Nick Coe and Gary Walker have played the true end position, also. At buck, Coe returns, and he’s joined by talents Big Kat Bryant, TD Moultry, and Richard Jibunor. Auburn again should be nasty up front.

     Auburn loses a trio of senior starters at linebacker. Deshaun Davis, Darrell Williams and Montavious Atkinson have been the glue for the Auburn defense for the last couple of seasons. I figure Kenny Britt is the likeliest candidate to step up and lead the defense from the middle. Richard McBryde is the only upper classman in the mix. After that guys who were underclassmen this past season will have to step up. That  includes Josh French, Zakoby McClain, Tanner Dean, Chandler Wooten, and Michael Harris. It is also possible that a guy or two that Auburn acquired during the early signing period could wind up playing right away.

     The secondary shapes up well, with 4 of 5 starters returning. At corner/nickelback, Noah Igbinoghene and Javaris Davis return. Christian Tutt has seen a good bit of playing time behind the starters as has Jordyn Peters. At safety, Daniel Thomas and Jeremiah Dinson return to their starting positions, and again there is depth. Smoke Monday and Jamien Sherwood have played quite a bit, as well.

     Auburn should field a talented, fairly deep defense next season with the only real question coming at linebacker. When linebackers coach Travis Williams came on board the Auburn coaching staff, I was stunned at how quickly he turned around what had been a liability for years. The past three seasons, inspired linebacker play has been the difference between a defense that gives up points in the teens and the defenses before that that gave up 25 or more points per game. I am confident that Williams will have a new unit ready to go in short order.

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