As always, let’s start by going in reverse.
South Carolina Gamecocks 84, UMass Minutemen 80: The game that was expected to be the closest of the night turned out to be the closest of the night. South Carolina edged UMass 84-80 in what was one of the better games of the day in general. A.J. Lawson went up for 24 points in the win, as the Gamecocks improved to 6-3 on the season with the victory.
Georgia Bulldogs 95, NC Central Eagles 59: Anthony Edwards scored 21 points en route to Georgia’s decisive 95-59 win over NC Central. A good ol’ palindrome score. NC Central held a thin 9-8 advantage early on, but were otherwise held very much in check by the Dawgs in Athens. UGA will have bigger tasks at hand in the next week, including the Arizona State Sun Devils next week and the SMU Mustangs a week after.
Tennessee Volunteers 72, Florida A&M Rattlers 43: Five players got into double figures for the Vols in their 72-43 romp over FAMU. Yves Pons scored 14 points, had seven rebounds, two steals, a block and just one turnover in 27 minutes, as his standout play just continues to churn on. John Fulkerson led in points with 15, while Olivier Nkamhoua had 11 points off the bench. Finally, Josiah-Jordan James and Lamonte Turner each had 10 points in the dub.
Despite the point spreads for both games, I think each of them could be pretty intriguing.
The 6-1 Mississippi State Bulldogs are back home for this Thursday night matchup against the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs. State went 2-1 out in Myrtle Beach, with victories over the Tulane Green Wave and the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers. The one loss came to the Villanova Wildcats, which all things considered, is not a terrible loss to take.
LaTech is 5-2 as they go into this matchup with the other Bulldogs. Their two losses are to the best teams they’ve faced this year in the Creighton Bluejays and the Indiana Hoosiers. Their best win came at the hands of the Samford Bulldogs, so, like, there’s a lot of bulldogs to speak of right now if you haven’t noticed.
State has been solid of course, but I wouldn’t be too surprised if LaTech gave them a run for their money. At least in terms of the point spread. They’re 2-2 in Starkville against the spread, and to be fair, the last two games were hits in the win column against the ULM Warhawks and the New Orleans Privateers. In other words, this could be a coin flip. So, if you’re betting... just be sure to proceed with caution.
Elsewhere, we have a solid Furman team playing the Auburn Tigers. Auburn has yet to be ousted from the ranks of the unbeaten, as they are 7-0 to this juncture. The Paladins, meanwhile, are 7-2, with their last loss coming earlier this week to the USF Bulls. Furman does just about everything right, and so does Auburn but to a higher level. The Tigers have won four in a row against the spread, but this is a pretty lofty line. Especially for a team who, while they just took a big loss to USF, is better than most expect. While I think Auburn is going to win, I wouldn’t be too surprised if they challenge that line quite a bit.