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Men's College Basketball
Preview
Xavier at Auburn
When: 6:00 PM ET, Saturday, December 20, 2014
Where: Auburn Arena, Auburn, Alabama

Xavier has had no issues taking care of business against SEC teams, a trend it hopes to maintain Saturday at Auburn. The Musketeers have won three games in a row, a streak sandwiched by double-digit victories over Alabama and Missouri, which suffered a 74-58 home loss to Xavier on Saturday in the Musketeers' first true road game of the season. Dee Davis scored a season-high 17 points for Xavier, which is 13-4 against the SEC since 2008.

Auburn's woeful offensive performance this season was turned around - at least for one game - in an 80-62 victory over Winthrop on Wednesday. Cinmeon Bowers produced 19 points and 17 rebounds but his teammates were 19-for-48 from the floor as the Tigers were left with a 40.7 percent mark on the season, the lowest percentage among the 14 SEC squads. Wednesday's win marked the first of five straight home games for Auburn before conference play begins Jan. 6 at Vanderbilt.

TV: 6 p.m. ET, SEC Network

ABOUT XAVIER (8-2):
The Musketeers rank among the nation's leaders in several offensive categories, entering Thursday's action 13th in the country in scoring (82.2), but they have been just a tad sloppy of late. Xavier turned the ball over 17 times against Missouri after giving it up 18 times in a rout of IUPUI on Dec. 9. Floor general Davis has been somewhat immune to the issue, posting an assist-to-turnover ratio of 3:1 over his last four games and ranking fourth in the Big East in that category overall (2.4:1).

ABOUT AUBURN (4-5): Depth has been an issue all season for the Tigers, but their ranks have been bolstered tremendously in the past week as star guard Antoine Mason has returned from a sprained ankle and the frontcourt has received two new bodies. Freshman Trayvon Reed, who stands 7-2, became eligible two games ago and broke out for the first time against Winthrop with eight rebounds and two blocks in 12 minutes. Forward Alex Thompson, who missed the start of the season for personal reasons, made his debut Wednesday and contributed eight points and six boards off the bench.

TIP-INS


1. Mason is averaging 13.5 points in 28 minutes since his return.

2. Musketeers freshman F Trevon Bluiett is averaging 9.3 points over a four-game stretch after posting a 17.2 mark over the first six games of the season.

3. Xavier has won the last four meetings, the last two coming in 2008.

PREDICTION: Xavier 73, Auburn 70
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Neutral Day Night Conf
Xavier 8-2 W3 6-0 1-0 1-2 2-2 6-0 0-0
Auburn 4-5 W1 3-1 0-3 1-1 0-1 4-4 0-0
Last Meeting
Xavier Auburn
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
12/3/08 AUB 74 XAV 81 81 35 53.5 74 26 41.0
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Xavier B. Raymond 32 76.9 5
Auburn F. Sullivan 23 66.7 7
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Xavier K. Frease 7 1 6
Auburn K. Barber 5 0 5
Assists Player  
Xavier D. Jackson 7
Auburn D. Reed 7
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Xavier T. Bluiett 140 53.8 25
Auburn K. Harrell 158 44.8 30
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Xavier J. Farr 70 20 50
Auburn C. Bowers 109 33 76
Assists Player  
Xavier D. Davis 60
Auburn K. Ross-Miller 20
Quickchart Matchup
Xavier Off vs  Auburn Defense
82.2 Points For
67.0 Points Against
52.6 FG%
45.5 FG%
34.5 Reb
32.9 Reb
Auburn Off vs  Xavier Defense
65.8 Points For
66.5 Points Against
40.7 FG%
43.9 FG%
32.9 Reb
26.1 Reb