Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports
Who: LSU Tigers (15-4, 4-2) vs South Carolina Gamecocks (10-8, 1-5)
When: Wednesday, January 28th - 6:00pm (cst)
Where: PMAC (13,215 - 45th NCAA)
How:
***TV: SECN
***Radio: 98.1FM
***Stream: SECN+ via ESPN3.com

The SEC has been historically a very tough conference to win on the road, but this year, home teams are only winning 54.8% of their games. Both LSU and South Carolina were major contributors to this trend breaking last week as LSU went 2-0 on the road and South Carolina went 0-2 at home. The Tigers won at Florida and Vanderbilt, while South Carolina lost to Tennessee and Kentucky.

South Carolina is a pesky team. They have victories over Iowa St and Oklahoma St, both of which have spent time in the top 25 this year. They sport a defense that is 16th in the country in defensive efficiency. They only allow opponents to shoot 41.5% from 2 point range and 30.8% from three point range. They aren't particularly tall, but that didn't stop them from outrebounding Kentucky over the weekend 40-28.

In conference play, they have struggled to keep opponents off the free throw line. They are allowing 26.5 free throw attempts per game in conference play. South Carolina will try and slow down the pace against an LSU team that has been fastest in the SEC and 6th fastest in the country.

Projected Starting Lineups:
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Currently there is a serious logjam of teams all vying for the right to call themselves second to Kentucky in the SEC. There are currently five teams with a 4-2 SEC record with 3 more teams still with hope sitting at 3-3. The one thing these teams don't want to do is drop games to the bottom 5. LSU already has dropped one of these and South Carolina will try and do it again.

There is only one matchup featuring 4-2 (or better) teams against one another during the mid-week, and that comes in the form of a Tuesday night Tennessee @ Arkansas game. Otherwise, those teams fighting to be closer to the top are playing the bottom dwellers of the SEC, so expect a few more of these teams to make it to 5-2 by the weekend.

SEC Standings (Thru 1/25/15):
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Spotlight Matchup:
Duane Notice vs Keith Hornsby - The shooting guards will play a big part of this game. Duane Notice is the Gamecocks leading scorer and hits 34.7% of his three pointers. Notice is very capable of having a big game. He has a season high 27 points and has scored 15+ points on 6 different occasions.

Keith Hornsby has been ice cold in his SEC home games. He was only 4 of 17 from the floor, including 1 of 9 from the three point line. In SEC road games he has made 14 of 29 from three point range and has scored double figures in each of those games. LSU needs Hornsby to make shots home or away to be a good team, so getting him going in the PMAC is essential.

Keys of the Game:
Get into the lane, don't settle - LSU shot 40% last week from three point range, but limited their attempts making 14 of 28 in the two games. With South Carolina's inability to keep teams off the FT line, LSU has to attack the paint. LSU shot 23 three pointers in both of their SEC losses, and the Tigers cannot settle for those shots all game.

Rebounding - South Carolina does not shoot the ball well, but offensive rebounds are the great equalizer to a poor shooting team. LSU cannot allow South Carolina as many offensive boards as Tennessee and Kentucky did last week (17.5 average per game).

Keep Focused - LSU lost late leads against Missouri, Georgia (won in OT), and Texas A&M. LSU has to keep focused throughout the whole 40 minutes and not allow their South Carolina any reason to believe they can win it in the end. They will be bigger, more athletic, and more talented on Wednesday night, but if the Tiger's lose focus, the Gamecocks can pull off the upset.

Prediction:
LSU 75, South Carolina 62
Filed Under: LSU Basketball

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