LSU is coached, for the first time this season, by Matt McMahon. McMahon has taken over an absolute disaster, as the firing of Will Wade and subsequent departures from that team have left a very bad situation. He has a solid amount of experience though, and knows how to win. He came to LSU from Murray State, where he coached a few All-Americans, including NBA star Ja Morant, and made a couple of NCAA tournament appearances.
This season is a typical rebuild season. The roster is made up of mostly transfers and guys who couldn’t get offers from other big time programs. As a result, the team has struggled against its better competition. While the Bengal Tigers are 12-5, they only have one win against Quad 1 competition, and nine of their 12 wins have come against teams that fall into the Quad 4 category, the weakest quality of competition. They average less than 70 points a game, and their defense hasn’t been very good against good teams. In the NET rankings, they are out of the top 100.
Players to Watch For:
Forward KJ Williams, #12- Williams is in his 5th year of college basketball, following McMahon over from Murray State. He was the Player of the Year in the OVS last season, and leads the Tigers in points, rebounds, and blocks. Another major matchup is coming for Auburn’s bigs down low.
Guard Adam Miller, #44- Miller is second in minutes for LSU, and second in scoring. He’s a guard with solid size at 6’3″, and is kind of the Robin to Williams’ Batman. He’s yet another transfer, coming over from Illinois.
Auburn won a basketball game because it was a superior three-point shooting team. Didn’t think I’d be able to say that this year. But Auburn has made a habit of playing good offense these past few games. I’m curious to see how that continues as Auburn gets back on the road. Frankly I don’t expect it to. I think this team will have to get back to playing suffocating defense and taking offense when it can get it. That brings me to my next point. Johni Broome is, in my opinion, the most important piece in this contest. He had several great games in a row, doing things that haven’t been done since Cinmeon Bowers was wearing an Auburn jersey. But he struggled against Mississippi State. As a result, that game was closer than maybe it should have been, especially given how Auburn shot the ball. Broome is going to have to have a return to form in order for Auburn to continue this streak as it goes on the road.