basketball-men-d1 flag

Andy Wittry | NCAA.com | February 29, 2020

No. 15 Auburn at No. 8 Kentucky: Prediction, time, TV channel, preview

College basketball rankings: Creighton, Michigan and Arizona State keep rising in Power 36

One of the most exciting head-to-head matchups in men's basketball in the last year-plus has been between Auburn and Kentucky. They've played four times since January 2019, and each school has won twice.

Auburn has won the last two meetings — 77-71 in overtime in the 2019 NCAA Tournament to go to its first-ever Final Four and again at home on Feb. 1, 75-66. The Wildcats swept the Tigers in the regular season last year, including a thrilling 82-80 victory on the road.

With four games left in the regular season, No. 8 Kentucky (23-5, 13-2 SEC) has a two-game lead over No. 15 Auburn (24-4, 11-4 SEC).

Given the way both teams are playing this season, don't be surprised if their next game isn't the last time they play this year.

Auburn at Kentucky: Time, TV channel

Kentucky will host Auburn at 3:45 p.m. ET Saturday, Feb. 29. The game will be broadcast on CBS.

NCAA TOURNAMENT PREDICTIONS: Ken Pomeroy says to watch BYU and Creighton in March

Auburn at Kentucky: Preview, prediction

These are two of the most balanced teams in the conference with Kentucky's offense ranked No. 28 on kenpom.com and its defense ranked No. 45, entering Wednesday's games. Auburn ranks No. 38 and No. 60, respectively.

Samir Doughty scored a team-high 23 points in Auburn's victory earlier this month on 4-of-10 shooting, thanks to a 14-of-15 mark from the free-throw line. The Tigers got to the line 44 times to the Wildcats' 24.

Auburn's free-throw rate and its incredible offensive rebounding (17 offensive boards on 33 missed shots) made it possible for the Tigers to win by nine even though they shot just 6-of-23 from 3-point range.

Kentucky guards Immanuel Quickley (23 points) and Tyrese Maxey (22 points) both scored efficiently but the 'Cats struggled on the defensive glass. Fellow guard Ashton Hagans had six turnovers and the team committed 29 fouls with five different players finishing with four or five fouls.

Hagans, who made just 2-of-5 shots for five points, needs to play better in the rematch and Kentucky will need a big performance from Nick Richards, who's the leading rebounder on a Kentucky team that was decimated on the boards.

Neither team is even an average 3-point shooting club, which means offensive rebounding and getting to the free-throw line — two things Auburn excels at and did well last time the two sides met — will be critical.

Kentucky has lost just twice in 2020 (and one of those losses was against the Tigers) and the Wildcats are 15-1 at home this season with the lone loss coming against Evansville back in mid-November. Playing a road game inside Rupp Arena is a tall task for anyone, especially a Tigers team that lost its last two road games against Missouri and Georgia teams that are a combined 9-19 in SEC play.

Prediction: Kentucky defeats Auburn.

Auburn baseball: These 10 players fill out the Tigers all-time starting lineup

Auburn baseball has a rich history of talent and winning ways. Let's take a look through the Tigers' record book and make an all-time lineup based on the best college baseball stats over the years.
READ MORE

How UNLV ended San Diego State's perfect season

UNLV ended San Diego State's undefeated season after 26 consecutive wins. The Aztecs were the last undefeated team in the country.
READ MORE

Alabama vs. Auburn: Time, stream, history for the 2019 Iron Bowl

The 2019 Iron Bowl, featuring Alabama and Auburn, is one of the in the biggest games of Week 14. Get the game time, stream and series history here.
READ MORE

Subscribe To Email Updates

Enter your information to receive emails about offers, promotions from NCAA.com and our partners