An 88-85 win over Auburn gave the Rebels their first SEC victory of the season on Saturday, and tonight Ole Miss looks to keep the momentum rolling against the Georgia Bulldogs. After dropping their first two SEC games, the Rebels can make it back to .500 conference play with a win tonight. A gutty comeback win against Auburn saw the Rebels playing with their “backs against the wall” to quote Rasheed Brooks. If the Rebels can play with the same energy tonight against UGA, they can pick up their 11th win of the season.
Another efficient shooting night for the rebels as they finished just under 50 percent from the floor, and shot 44 percent on 3’s. A balanced attack saw six Rebels score in double figures, led by Deandre Burnett with 18 points and eight assists. Sebastian Siaz turned in another double-double performance, and this time the leaders of this Rebel squad had some help from their supporting cast. Terrence Davis finished with 16 points; Cullen Neal was solid as he connected on three shots from beyond the arc contributing to his 13 point night. Known more for his skills on the defensive end is Justas Furmanavicius who leads the team with 22 blocks, but on Saturday gave the Rebels 11 points in a start. Rasheed Brooks also turned in 10 points in the winning effort. If the Rebels can continue to spread the ball, and attack from both inside and out it will present a challenge for opponents to defend the Rebels offense.
On the defensive end, the Rebels were out-rebounded 36-26 by the Tigers and allowed Auburn to surpass their season average go 79 PPG. Siaz led the team with 10 rebounds, but outside of Siaz the Rebels weren’t active on the boards. The Bulldogs have one of the SEC’s most prolific scorers on their roster in Yante Maten. Maten is second in the conference in scoring averaging 20.2 PPG, so the Rebels mustn’t allow him to take the game over. Forcing him into difficult shots and not allowing him to the basket is a must for the Rebel defense.
The Bulldogs come in with a 10-5 record and are 2-1 in the SEC. UGA is led by head coach Mark Fox, but in their win over Missouri, it was assistant coach Kevin Davison that made headlines. Davison and a Missouri assistant got into a heated argument, and both were assessed a technical foul. The Bulldogs are 2-2 on the road this season, and the Rebels split their matchups with UGA last year 1-1.
The 6 p.m. tip-off at the Pavilion can be seen on ESPNU and heard on the Ole Miss Radio Network. For those who don’t have ESPNU, the game can be seen on WatchESPN.com.
Steven Gagliano is a writer for HottyToddy.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.