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Tonight in SEC Hoops: November 9

We’ve got some premier matchups on the board.

NCAA Basketball: South Alabama at Auburn John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

The SEC has itself a large slate of action on this Friday night. After a couple of days of respite, nearly every team is hitting the hardwood. Here’s the schedule of events:

Game Time (ET) Where to Watch
Kentucky vs. Southern Illinois 7 p.m. SEC Network
Tennessee vs. Louisiana 7 p.m. SEC Network+
Auburn vs. Washington 9:30 p.m. SEC Network
Mississippi State vs. Austin Peay 7:30 p.m. SEC Network+
Florida vs. Charleston Southern 7 p.m. SEC Network+
LSU vs. UNC Greensboro 8 p.m. SEC Network+
South Carolina vs. Stony Brook 7 p.m. SEC Network+
Texas A&M vs. UC Irvine 9:30 p.m. SEC Network+
Arkansas vs. Texas 7 p.m. ESPN
Mizzou vs. Iowa State 7 p.m. Cyclone TV/Mediacom 22
Georgia vs. Savannah State 8:30 p.m. SEC Network+

Obviously, the lead game of the night is between the Auburn Tigers and Washington Huskies. These two programs funnily enough played each other in football earlier this year, and now will be playing a top-flight nonconference game in hoops, too. Washington got off to a hot start with a 73-55 win over Charles Bassey and the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers on Tuesday night. Auburn, meanwhile, won 101-58 over the South Alabama Jaguars. A win for either side would be mucho important at the start of the season, and you’ll want to pay attention to this one, we think.

Another game that could bring plenty of attention is between the Arkansas Razorbacks and Texas Longhorns. This game will be played at Fort Bliss in El Paso, Texas as a ‘neutral site’ affair. Texas won 71-59 over the Eastern Illinois Panthers on Tuesday. This is the Hogs’ opener, meanwhile, so we’ll see how they start the season off.

The Missouri Tigers and Iowa State Cyclones play the back half of a home-and-home series on Friday night in Ames. The only downside to this matchup? Won’t be on national TV. No, you’ve gotta pay to watch this game unless you have Mediacom in Columbia, MO. Thanks a lot, Big 12.

The Texas A&M Aggies are set to play a very solid UC Irvine Anteaters team. The Anteaters were pegged as the preseason favorite to win the Big West Conference, doing so by a pretty hefty margin. They are led by guard Evan Leonard and forward Tommy Rutherford, who’ll be the ones to watch for UCI tonight in that matchup in College Station.

Speaking of preseason favorites, Naz Reid and the LSU Tigers will host one of their own, as the UNC Greensboro Spartans come to Baton Rouge. The Spartans are led by senior guard Francis Alonso and junior forward James Dickey, and it was Alonso who got off to a fast start in their opener. He scored 23 in a 74-66 win over North Carolina A&T. But LSU, of course, had quite a showing with six players in double figures, including Reid, who led the team in points and rebounds.

Meanwhile, the Kentucky Wildcats are looking to bounce back after they were dominated by the freshmen of the Duke Blue Devils. Their home opener will take place on Friday night against the Southern Illinois Salukis. UK hasn’t lost a home opener since November 14, 2008, when they lost to the VMI Keydets.

There’s a pretty big difference between those games and the rest of the slate though. No other SEC team plays a team ranked higher than 120th. So, stay tuned with what you want to stay in tune with.