The Auburn Corner: Evaluating Where Tigers are at Following Tough Week

Bruce Pearl during the game between George Mason University and the #15 Auburn Tigers at Neville Arena in Auburn, AL on Wednesday, Oct 26, 2022. Zach Bland/Auburn Tigers

Every Tuesday right here you can read The Auburn Corner, where we’ll get into a different topic on the Auburn Tigers, break down the previous game, preview the upcoming game, and everything in between. In this week’s edition, after entering the AP top-ten, the Tigers lost back-to-back games last week. Where are they at following the tough week?

Winning on the road in the SEC, and really college basketball in general, is not easy. Following Auburn’s entry into the top-ten, it faced two straight road games and ended up dropping both of them at Alabama and over the weekend at Mississippi State.

There seems to be a truth coming to light that while the conference is full of good teams, there are very few great teams with Tennessee, and possibly Kentucky being the exceptions.

KenPom, which is an analytic and efficiency based rankings system and generally regarded as a more reliable metric than the AP Poll still has the Tigers ranked No. 7 overall in the nation and one spot ahead of Alabama. Tennessee is No. 4 and Kentucky is all the way down at No. 20. The AP Poll dropped Auburn to No. 16 after they were ranked No. 8 last week.

In the week ahead, Auburn has a chance to get back on track as they sit tied for third place in the conference at 5-2, just a game back of Alabama. A get-right opportunity faces them Wednesday night at home against Vanderbilt, while a more tricky matchup awaits Bruce Pearl’s group on Saturday evening in Oxford at Ole Miss.

Nonetheless, a 2-0 week would go a long way towards keeping on course for the Auburn Tigers in the race for an SEC title.