No. 13 Auburn is up for the challenge of the battle-hardened Texas Southern

AUBURN, Ala. – No. 13 Auburn hosts Texas Southern at Neville Arena on Friday night, and if anyone knows how hyped Texas Southern will be for the game, this is it Zep jasper.

The senior guard was a mid-major at the College of Charleston before moving to Auburn, and during his time with the Cougars they beat teams like Memphis and Providence and gave everything they had to others like North Carolina, LSU and Oklahoma State could.

Now Jasper is on the other side, playing the role of Goliath and fending off David.

“We always talk about it, no matter who we play against, we have to be Auburn,” Jasper said. “We’ve got to come out with the intensity, the fight, the authority, and just play Auburn basketball. You can’t take a team lightly. I feel like coming from the College of Charleston, you have to be ready because that’s your big game. It’s their game of the season.”

Texas Southern isn’t intimidated either. The visiting Tigers, led by former LSU head coach Johnny Jones, have already hit the road at No. 25 Texas Tech and No. 3 Houston and defeated Arizona State in a neutral game on Sunday. Last year they went to Florida and knocked off a top 20 Gators team.

“They got four starters back from last year’s NCAA tournament team and they played an incredible plan.” Auburn head coach Bruce Pearl said. “You will not be intimidated. They are older and extremely well trained. So it will be a good challenge.”

For Auburn, 11 players scored four or more points in Tuesday night’s win over Winthrop, including freshman Chance Westry who made his collegiate debut and had five points, two rebounds and two assists in 16 minutes.

Auburn and Texas Southern tip at 7:00 p.m. CT from Neville Arena. Andy Burcham and Sonny Smith will have the radio call on 93.9 Tiger FM, online at AuburnTigers.com and on the TuneIn app. The game will also stream exclusively on SEC Network+.

Dylan Cardwell (44) during the game between the Winthrop Eagles and the Auburn Tigers at Neville Arena in Auburn, Alabama on Tuesday November 15, 2022.Grayson Belanger/Auburn Tigers

PLAYER TO WATCH: DYLAN CARDWELL

youth Center Dylan Cardwell currently leads the SEC and is #3 nationally in blocks per game (4.67). In his first two games against George Mason and USF, he hit career-high five shots each. Auburn again leads the nation in blocked shots per game (9.3) while Cardwell carries the torch for Walker Kessler, 2022 Naismith Defensive Player of the Year, who set the school’s single-season record for blocked shots (155) last year.

WITHIN THE SERIES: TEXAS SOUTH

Auburn leads 4-0 in the all-time series with Texas Southern. All games in the series were played at Auburn’s home field. The two teams last played in December 2020 during the COVID season when the Tigers clinched an 80-63 win. Current senior Allen Flanigan led with 18 points Jaylin Williams scored 15 points and six rebounds.

The closest game of the series was a 1-point win by Auburn, 61-60, on December 23, 2014.

1,000 POINTS CLUB CLOCK

Johni Broom raised his 1,000th on Tuesday night. Career point against Winthrop. He also recorded his 36th career double-double with 18 points and 13 rebounds. He reached that milestone in 67 career games for Morehead State and Auburn combined. his teammates, Wendell Green Jr. and Zep jasperare also approaching 1,000 career points.

career points
Johni Broom: 1,017
Wendell Green Jr.: 916
Zep jasper: 883

CLEANING THE GLASS

The Tigers grabbed 53 rebounds against Winthrop. It marked the fifth most rebounds in a single game in the Bruce Pearl era in Auburn. They currently rank 8th nationally in rebounds per game (47.33) and lead the nation in offensive rebounds per game (20.67).

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