Georgia (12-5, 3-3) at Auburn (16-2, 4-1)
When: Saturday, January 20th 2018
Where: Auburn Arena, Auburn, AL
Time: 6:00 ET | TV: SEC Network
Opening Odds: Auburn -8.5
The Auburn Tigers return to the court after suffering their first loss in two months to take on the Georgia Bulldogs in a key SEC matchup on Saturday evening at the Auburn Arena. The 20th-ranked Tigers saw their 14-game winning streak snapped on Wednesday with a 76-71 road loss at shorthanded Alabama – the team’s first since falling to Temple on November 17th. Auburn knows it missed an opportunity for a solid road win after allowing 46 points in the second half to a Crimson Tide team missing its leading scorer. Auburn gave up 21 points off turnovers and scored 14 points below its season average. The Tigers are still in good shape – one-half game behind Florida for the SEC lead, while Georgia comes in after snapping a two-game losing streak with Tuesday’s 61-60 victory at LSU. Yante Maten’s basket with five seconds left propelled the Bulldogs back to .500 in SEC play in the opener of five road games in a seven-game stretch, after being down by 10 points at halftime. Auburn averages an SEC second-best 41.1 rebounds per game (ninth nationally), while the Bulldogs are third in the league and 17th in the country at 40.6 per game. Georgia squeaked out a 79-78 win at home in the team’s only meeting last season.
Maten – and the Bulldogs overcame a slow start Tuesday – to finish with 21 points, and begins the weekend leading the SEC in scoring (19.7 points) and rebounding (9.1). Georgia held LSU to 35.7% shooting from the field in the second half and is limiting opponents to 38% shooting overall – best in the SEC and sixth in the country. Forward Derek Ogbeide scored 11 points on 5-of-5 shooting against LSU, after scoring a combined nine points in losses to Missouri and South Carolina. The Bulldogs will host Arkansas on Tuesday before stepping out of conference for a matchup at Kansas State next Saturday.
While the Bulldogs are led by their defense, the Tigers’ offense is what makes this team go. They lead the SEC and rank 16th nationally in scoring offense (85.7 points) but shot just 39.3% against Alabama in their lowest offensive output of the season. Guard Bryce Brown scored 12 points and leads Auburn in scoring at 15.8 points and finished 4-of-8 from 3-point range Wednesday to lead the SEC in made 3-pointers (59). Second-leading scorer Mustapha Heron (15.1) finished with just five points Wednesday. Forward Desean Murray recorded a double-double Wednesday (11 points, 10 rebounds) and is averaging 14 points and 8.8 rebounds in his past four games.
Both of these teams have played better than predicted, especially Auburn and this is a big game for both squads. I have to take the points in this one as Georgia’s defense is pretty solid and should be able to slow down Auburn’s offense, like Alabama did.
Pick: Georgia +8.5
- Bulldogs are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS win.
- Bulldogs are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.
- Bulldogs are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games overall.
- Bulldogs are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
- Bulldogs are 4-9 ATS in their last 13 games following a straight up win.
- Tigers are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games following a straight up loss.
- Tigers are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games following a ATS loss.
- Tigers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.
- Tigers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 Saturday games.
- Tigers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home games.
- Tigers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
- Tigers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall.
- Tigers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 vs. Southeastern.
- Under is 6-0 in Bulldogs last 6 overall.
- Under is 5-0 in Bulldogs last 5 road games.
- Under is 6-0 in Bulldogs last 6 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
- Under is 5-0 in Bulldogs last 5 road games vs. a team with a winning home record.
- Under is 4-0 in Bulldogs last 4 Saturday games.
- Under is 8-0 in Bulldogs last 8 vs. Southeastern.
- Under is 4-0 in Bulldogs last 4 games following a ATS win.
- Under is 5-0 in Bulldogs last 5 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600.
- Under is 4-1 in Bulldogs last 5 games following a straight up win.
- Under is 4-0 in Tigers last 4 overall.
- Over is 4-0 in Tigers last 4 games following a straight up loss.
- Under is 4-0 in Tigers last 4 vs. Southeastern.
- Over is 5-1 in Tigers last 6 games following a ATS loss.
- Over is 22-5-1 in Tigers last 28 home games vs. a team with a losing road record.
- Over is 14-6 in Tigers last 20 home games.
- Over is 15-7 in Tigers last 22 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
- Bulldogs are 1-5 ATS in the last 6 meetings in Auburn.
- Bulldogs are 1-6 ATS in the last 7 meetings.
- Underdog is 6-0 ATS in the last 6 meetings.