Indianapolis Star
Men's College Basketball
Preview
Auburn at Alabama
When: 7:00 PM ET, Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Where: Coleman Coliseum, Tuscaloosa, Alabama

The last remaining undefeated team in the SEC standings will try to stay that way when No. 20 Auburn travels to face rival Alabama on Wednesday. The Tigers are looking for their first 5-0 start in SEC play since the 1998-99 season.



The Tigers have won 14 straight – the longest active streak in the nation – and are off to their best start in 18 years. Their 74-68 win at Mississippi State on Saturday snapped a streak of six straight double-digit wins, including each of their first three SEC games. Alabama has won two straight following a two-game skid and is coming off a 74-66 win at LSU on Tuesday. The rivals have split the past 10 meetings, but Auburn won both matchups last season and is looking for its first three-game win streak in the series in eight years.

TV: 7 p.m. ET, SEC Network



ABOUT AUBURN (16-1, 4-0 SEC): The Tigers are one of the nation’s most prolific offensive teams with a trio of guards leading the way. Leading scorer Bryce Brown (16 points) does the bulk of his damage from 3-point range, averaging 8.5 attempts and 3.2 made 3-pointers per game, while backcourt mates Mustapha Heron (15.7 points, 5.5 rebounds) and Jared Harper (12.6 points, 5.4 assists) are more versatile scorers. Auburn’s glaring weakness is its lack of size in the post, as 6-3 forward Desean Murray (11.4 points, 7.5 rebounds) is the team’s top rebounder.

ABOUT ALABAMA (11-6, 3-2): The Crimson Tide are likely to be short-handed again with forward Donta Hall (11.5 points, 7.2 rebounds) nursing a wrist injury. If he can’t go, that minimizes the size advantage Alabama might have had in the post and leaves the Tide with three double-digit scorers – freshman guards Collin Sexton (19.3 points) and John Petty (11.7 points) and sophomore Dazon Ingram (11.1 points, 6.6 rebounds). The return of Braxton Key from a knee injury gives the Tide a bit of size inside, but his playing time and effectiveness has been limited.



TIP-INS

1. The Tigers haven’t won two straight road games against the Crimson Tide since 1970-71.

2. Alabama has shot 81.2 percent from the foul line in its last eight games after hitting just 63 percent of its free throws in its first nine contests.

3. Auburn shoots an SEC-best 77.8 percent from the foul line with all five starters hitting 75 percent or better.



PREDICTION: Auburn 73, Alabama 71


Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Neutral Day Night Conf
Auburn 16-1 W14 9-0 4-0 3-1 8-1 8-0 4-0
Alabama 11-6 W2 7-1 1-3 3-2 2-3 9-3 3-2
Last Meeting
Auburn Alabama
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
2/4/17 AUB 82 ALA 77 82 21 50.9 77 43 43.1
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Auburn R. Johnson 15 54.5 0
Alabama C. Collins 17 46.2 2
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Auburn A. McLemore 8 2 6
Alabama B. Olaniyan 8 4 4
Assists Player  
Auburn B. Brown 3
Alabama D. Ingram 4
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Auburn B. Brown 272 39.6 41
Alabama C. Sexton 308 44.2 103
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Auburn D. Murray 127 46 81
Alabama D. Hall 115 36 79
Assists Player  
Auburn J. Harper 91
Alabama C. Sexton 55
Quickchart Matchup
blue bar Auburn Off vs  red bar Alabama Defense
blue bar 86.5 Points For
red bar 69.8 Points Against
blue bar 45.3 FG%
red bar 40.6 FG%
blue bar 38.6 Reb
red bar 32.1 Reb
red bar Alabama Off vs  blue bar Auburn Defense
red bar 74.9 Points For
blue bar 72.6 Points Against
red bar 46.6 FG%
blue bar 39.9 FG%
red bar 34.2 Reb
blue bar 31.3 Reb