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Sports Illustrated ranks Auburn basketball in NCAA tournament

By Lance Dawe,


Pat Forde believes Auburn is one of the more average overall teams in March Madness.

For the fourth time in the last five seasons, Bruce Pearl will bring Auburn to the NCAA Tournament. The Tigers (20-12) have earned a 9-seed in the Midwest Region of the bracket. They will face off against the 8-seed Iowa Hawkeyes in the opening round. Auburn gets Iowa in Birmingham, Alabama, just a two-hour drive from the Plains.

According to Pat Forde of Sports Illustrated , who recently released an article ranking every team in the NCAA tournament, the Tigers are the No. 42 overall team in the field of 68.

Here's what he had to say about Auburn.

"The Tigers exude an aura of dysfunction, having lost seven of their past 10 games. Their last win away from home was Jan. 21. Their last win away from home against an NCAA tournament team was Nov. 23, in Mexico. In going 4–9 over their past 14 games, Auburn has played a lot of close games but won almost none of them (1–6 in outcomes of five points or fewer)."

"Coach Bruce Pearl hitched his wagon to ball-dominating point guard Wendell Green Jr. , and the results are the results. During the past 13 games, Green has taken 152 shots and made 52 (34.2 percent), while big man Johni Broome has taken 150 and made 82 (54.7 percent). Green’s points per attempt: 0.8. Broome’s points per attempt: 1.1. Auburn was given a sweetheart regional draw that places the Tigers in Birmingham. Given how much better they’ve played at home, maybe that will be a tangible advantage against Iowa —and, potentially, in the second round against Houston."

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