The Blue Raiders of Middle Tennessee State head to Auburn to take on the Tigers on Saturday. It’s a matchup of two teams with only one loss each. These are two teams with NCAA tournament aspirations, although Middle Tennessee State may have to win their conference to get in. Both teams are streaking as the Blue Raiders have won five straight and the Tigers have won six straight.
They also both have impressive point differentials as the Blue Raiders are putting up 77.9 points per game and allowing only 65.3, for a positive point differential of 12.6. The Tigers are even better, putting up 87.1 points per game and allowing only 71.9. That’s a 15.2 point per game difference. Both of these teams are legitimately good and this should be a good test.
The Blue Raiders win again
Middle Tennessee State won again on Saturday, beating Mississippi by a score of 77-58. Ole Miss isn’t a great team, but considering they come from the SEC, this may have been Middle Tennessee State’s most impressive win of the year. They were actually down by one point at half, but exploded in the second half and outscored the Rebels 44-24 to win going away.
As usual, the Blue Raiders defense carried the day. They allowed only three Rebels to get to double digits, and their leading scorer only put up 12 points. They held the Rebels to 40% shooting and forced misses on 13 of 18 three-pointers. The Blue Raiders shot 50% themselves and a 10% difference in field goal percentage will lead to a great many wins.
Auburn keeps winning
Auburn won their sixth straight game on Saturday, defeating UAB 85-80 in a game that was pretty close throughout. It wasn’t the Tigers most impressive win, but UAB plays an uptempo game and always brings a good offense. They have a full week off leading into the Blue Raider game, but so does Middle Tennessee State as many teams are taking finals and not many games were scheduled this week.
Auburn’s best player this season has been Bryce Brown. The junior guard from Stone Mountain, GA is putting up 17.1 points per game along with 2.8 boards and 2.2 assists. He’s shooting only 41% from the field, but he is shooting a solid 82% from the free throw line and a decent 37% from beyond the arc.
The Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders are:
- (no trends available)
The Auburn Tigers are:
- 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.
- 7-2 ATS in their last 9 games following a ATS loss.
- 8-2 ATS in their last 10 non-conference games.
- 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall.
Both teams are playing well, with the Blue Raiders using a suffocating defense to win games. Unfortunately, I think the Tigers are too talented for them and they won’t be able to shut them down. I think the Tigers win fairly easily.