Escape From the SEC West’s Cellar!

By J.M. Comer

sec-cellar.jpg

“Try the sausage hon!” This frightening photo of a basement is from a USDA site about the at-home pleasures of Appalachian hog butchering/sausage making. The Google image search did its job well (a little too well) with search terms “basement” and “stairs.” Yikes! Can Auburn escape the creepy SEC West basement tonight?

The Auburn Tigers take on the LSU Tigers tonight in Baton Rouge in an untelevised matchup of bottom dwellers. Both teams stand at 0-2 in SEC play tied with the University of Alabama (UAT plays against Georgia tonight). Auburn is riding a four-game losing streak, while LSU has a five-game losing streak going. LSU has lost 7 out of their last 10 games; let’s just say that LSU isn’t going to be pulling the same championship two-fer in basketball and football that the Florida Gators enjoyed last year.

What can the Auburn Tigers expect? Well, thanks to the handy-dandy media guides for both schools, we can glean that LSU is not so good battling for rebounds, losing that stat to the other team the last eight games. But those Tigers of LSU rank second in the SEC for 3-point defense and shot blocks.

Most disturbingly, LSU battled back from a 22-point deficit to close within 2 points before losing to a solid Ole Miss team, 74-71, in their last game. (Ole Miss is visiting Auburn this Saturday. It will be on TV.) Also, Coach Jeff Lebo is 1-6 against LSU. His Tigers got their first win against LSU last year in Auburn.

Auburn’s loss to Florida on Saturday was not as bad as the final score indicated. It kind of fell apart with 7 minutes remaining in the game. Once again, exhaustion and a thin bench were factors, I’m sure.

Maybe Auburn can pull this one off tonight followed with an at-home surprise this Saturday. It would give Coach Lebo a 54-53 record in his fourth year at Auburn.

Eye-popping stats due to injuries

Auburn’s Quantez Robertson (#23 or look for the guy on the court with the “S” on his chest) leads the SEC with 37.6 minutes played per game. He has played 37 minutes or more in 11 games this season and played the entire game four (count that … 1-2-3-4) times this year. He is not alone. DeWayne Reed (#12) also has played four entire games.

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