Tennessee Volunteers vs LSU Tigers When:
Tuesday, January 7th - 6:00PM Where:
PMAC (13,215, 47th NCAA) How:
TV: ESPN, Radio: 98.1FM, Stream: ESPN3.com
SEC play is finally here! After a lackluster performance against Rhode Island, LSU takes on a very good, very athletic Tennessee squad on Tuesday night in front of a nationally televised ESPN audience.
Tennessee comes to Baton Rouge playing some of their best basketball recently. Last week, they beat a very good Virginia team by 35 and DII, Tusculum, by 47. They are however, 0-2 on true road games this year. Still, Tennessee is a team that can beat anyone if they play their best. Image Link
Jordan McRae has killed LSU in their previous meetings. It will be interesting to see if Jones looks to Quarterman to guard McRae. The 7 inches Hickey gives up to the large guard really helped McRae get into the paint with confidence and shoot over him for easy baskets.
Tennessee leads the SEC with a 1.5 assist to turnover ratio. That is an incredibly impressive number. They are third in the country in protecting the ball only turning the ball over 9.2 times per game. LSU will likely have to force more than that to win over Tennessee.
Tennessee also leads the SEC in points per possession. They are averaging 1.19 PPP this season. LSU has held 10 of their 12 opponents to under 1 PPP this season but will be challenged by Tennessee in this category.
While they are efficient, they are slow. They average only 64.8 possessions per game. LSU has been faster than 64.8 possessions in each game this season and average 70.8 possessions per game. It will be interesting to see how Coach Jones decides to play Tennessee defensively.
So far this season, Coach Jones has pressed teams who play slow basketball. However, with Tennessee's athleticism and ball security, will he sit back and try and force Tennessee to shoot from outside? Will he take it to Tennessee and press the entire game? The likely answer is somewhere in between, but with the home loss to Rhode Island over the weekend, expect LSU to come out mentally ready. Prediction:
LSU 72, Tennessee 69