While the SEC might get as many as eight or even nine teams into the Big Dance this season, both the Tigers and Bulldogs find themselves on the outside looking in at the NCAA Tournament bubble.
Tigers closing regular season strong
The Tigers won for the third time in four games on Tuesday, defeating Vanderbilt at home 88-78 behind a strong individual effort from freshman point guard Tremont Waters. Waters finished with 28 points, nine assists, and four rebounds on the night, while Wayde Sims added 16 on a perfect 6-for-6 shooting from the field to help the Tigers improve to 7-8 in league play this year.
LSU enters the weekend scoring just 105.1 points per 100 possessions during conference play (7th in the SEC), which is 11.0 points per 100 possessions worse than their season average.
Led by Waters, the Tigers have turned the ball over on just 16.0 percent of their offensive possessions during league play (4th in the SEC), while sporting an effective field goal percentage of 51.6 percent (6th in the SEC).
Defensively, LSU comes in allowing 107.2 points per 100 possessions during conference play (11th in the SEC). Opposing team have really hurt the Tigers from inside the arc this year. SEC teams have shot 54.1 percent from two-point range against the Tigers’ defense (14th in the SEC) through 15 league games, which has helped them sport an effective field goal percentage of 53.0 percent (13th in the SEC).
Opposing teams are also crushing LSU on the offensive glass. The Tigers have allowed SEC teams to own an offensive rebounding rate of 31.2 percent (12th in the SEC) so far this season.
Bulldogs win streak stops at two games
After back-to-back Quadrant 1 wins, Georgia snapped a two-game winning streak on Wednesday with a disappointing 66-57 loss on the road against South Carolina.
The Bulldogs come in allowing 103.4 points per 100 possessions on the defensive end of the floor (7th in the SEC), despite owning the top two-point percentage defense in the conference.
Georgia has limited opposing SEC teams to just 43.0 percent shooting from inside the arc (1st in the SEC) and a free throw rate of just 29.9 percent (2nd in the SEC).
However, the Bulldogs inability to force turnovers and clean up on the defensive glass has come back to haunt them on the defensive end of the floor. The team has forced turnovers on just 14.5 percent of their defensive possessions (13th in the SEC), while allowing their opponents to generate second chance opportunities on 31.0 percent of their missed field goal attempts (11th in the SEC).
Generating consistent offense has been a struggle for Mark Fox and the Bulldogs all season long. Georgia enters the weekend scoring just 99.3 points per 100 possessions during conference play (13th in the SEC), while turning the ball over on 20.4 percent of their offensive possessions (13th in the SEC).
About the only thing that Georgia does well on offense is crash the offense glass. The team owns an offensive rebounding rate of 34.0 percent during the conference season (1st in the SEC).
- Tigers are 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 games overall.
- Underdog is 6-0-1 ATS in the last 7 meetings.
The Bulldogs have been tough to beat at home, but this serves as a bit of a revenge game for LSU. The Tigers suffered a heartbreaking one-point loss at home against the Bulldogs early on during conference play. LSU has enough bodies to throw at Yante Maten to make his life difficult on the offensive end and point guard Tremont Waters has been one of the most dynamic freshmen in the country this season. Look for LSU to get their revenge and take the Tigers to cover the spread on the road in this SEC showdown on Saturday afternoon.