Auburn vs. UConn Prediction: Who Wins Battle of Ranked Teams?

Mike Spector gives his prediction and pick for the highly anticipated Auburn Tigers vs. UConn Huskies matchup tonight.
Mike Spector
Wed, November 24, 9:40 AM EST

Auburn vs. UConn Prediction: Who Wins Battle of Ranked Teams?

The Battle 4 Atlantis is quickly rivaling the Maui Invitational as the most anticipated early-season college basketball tournament. This year's eight-team field is loaded with six teams that made the NCAA tournament last year and three that currently reside in the AP Top 25. Two of those teams are the No. 19 Auburn Tigers and No. 22 Connecticut Huskies, who meet in the most high-profile game in the first round of this prestigious tournament.

Auburn vs. UConn Start Time, Where to Watch, and Odds

Date: Wednesday, November 24, 2021
Game Time: 2:30 p.m. ET
Where To Watch: ESPN

Click Here For Auburn vs. UConn Odds

Auburn vs. UConn Prediction

Auburn is 3-0 to start the season, and no opponent has scored more than 65 points against them this season. The Tigers are among the few top 25 teams to have played a true road game at this point in the season. They rallied from a 15-point deficit to beat South Florida 58-52 on the Bulls' home floor in their last game. K.D. Johnson was the hero for Auburn, scoring 15 points off the bench to spur the comeback.

UConn has cruised to a 4-0 record, with each of their wins coming by at least 24 points. They have won their four contests by an average of 40.8 points. This is the Huskies' first game away from home, and they will face a big step up in competition from Auburn, as none of their first four opponents rank within the top 280 of the latest KenPom rankings.

Like many teams around the country, Bruce Pearl's Auburn squad is a blend of returning production from last year's squad (namely Allen Flanigan, Jaylin Williams, and Devan Cambridge), infused with several impact transfers. K.D. Johnson from Georgia has had the most significant early impact as the team's leading scorer, while Eastern Kentucky transfer Wendell Green has also added double figures (11.3 PPG thus far). However, arguably the most important transfer in this game will be UNC transfer Walker Kessler, whose 7'1" frame will be invaluable against UConn's front line length.

The Huskies are huge on the frontline, with Adama Sanogo, Isaiah Whaley, Tyler Polley, and Akok Akok all 6'9" or taller. The foursome is a big reason the Huskies rank fifth in the country in offensive rebounding percentage, securing 43.8% of their misses. In addition, they are a significant factor in the team's 39.3% mark from 3-point range, as smaller opponents often have to double them inside, freeing up space for their shooters. However, UConn has not seen anyone as talented as Jabari Smith to this point, and his quickness and athleticism make him a potential lottery pick.

Auburn has the depth and the size to give the Huskies problems. UConn's eye-popping statistics will sway many bettors to this point, but one must factor in the inferior competition they have played when analyzing their metrics. Auburn senior transfer Zep Jasper is a steady ball-handler who brings backcourt experience and negates UConn's advantage over most teams with R.J. Cole. In addition, the Tigers have turned the ball over on just 14.4% of their possessions this year, which is a far cry from last year's team that often unraveled with how careless they were.

As long as Auburn competes on the backboards and Smith and Kessler stay out of foul trouble, they can win this game. The Tigers are 8-3-1 ATS in their last 12 neutral site games, and 3.5 points are too much for UConn to be giving Bruce Pearl's team.

Auburn Tigers vs. UConn Huskies Pick

  • Auburn +3.5 (-110)
Mike Spector
MikeSpector01
Mike Spector brings unmatched knowledge and insight into the game of football, and more importantly the process of betting on NFL football. Mike is the #2 ranked expert in FantasyPros' NFL betting contest
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