8 Auburn @ Alabama, Wednesday, 6:30 CT
The "Iron Bowl of Basketball" has been must-see TV in recent years, almost as much as the gridiron matchup has been. The Tigers travel to take on an unranked, 6-loss Crimson Tide squad in Tuscaloosa on Wednesday, renewing this heated in-state rivalry.
Don't let those AP poll numbers fool you, however. The Tide come in at 8th overall in the NET rankings, just two spots behind 6th-ranked Auburn. The numbers have these as two quite evenly-matched teams, in other words.
Nate Oats's squad, seemingly never without controversy, come into this game at 12-6 overall—but five of those losses are to Quad 1 teams. Auburn, for their part, are 0-2 against Quad 1 teams. Can they pick up their first win in that category on the road in a rivalry game? It will be a tough ask, without a doubt.
Keep an eye on Auburn's star, Johni Broome, in this one. The Tigers, fresh off a shellacking of Ole Miss at home, are playing cohesive, smart basketball, and he's served as a fitting centerpiece on both ends of the floor.
The Aggies won't see Auburn again in the regular season. They will only see the Tide once as well, traveling to Coleman Coliseum on February 17. That will figure to be a tough matchup indeed; this will be one worth watching just for the environment and quality of competition, but faithful fans will keep a close eye on any advantages this Aggie squad may be able to exploit on the part of the Tide.