UK Hoops Vs. Auburn Tigers Game Preview and Thread: Backing Pat, But Not Backing Down

Kentucky coach Matthew Mitchell has a lot to smile about lately. - US PRESSWIRE

When Matthew Mitchell's team takes the floor against the Auburn Tigers at Memorial Coliseum, they are going to have to live up to some things. There is going to be pressure every game from here on out. Winning streaks on the line, rankings to hold up, and effort to not let down. and Matthew Mitchell wouldn't have it any other way:

Kentucky vs. Auburn
Sun., Jan. 20 - 2:00 p.m. ET
Lexington, Ky.

Memorial Coliseum

TV: SEC Network
Radio: UK IMG

They are playing so hard right now and the best word I have to describe them is just a bunch of talented kids, but they are really hustling right now. They are really hustling. They are coming in each and every day and I am not having to yell and scream and fight them to try and get them to bring that kind of intensity and that kind of effort level, so right now you can't rest for your laurels. You can't rest, but they are playing well right now because I think they are playing so well.

Kentucky Hoops looks to continue its winning ways when it takes on Auburn in the Wildcats' "We Back Pat" game. The "We Back Pat" initiative is focused on bringing awareness and recognition to The Pat Summitt Foundation and its fight against Alzheimer's disease. In every SEC women's basketball game – 17 games in 14 cities – promotional public address announcements and video endorsements will help to increase awareness of the foundation and its mission. Players will also be showing their support by wearing "We Back Pat" t-shirts during warm-ups.

Kentucky will be looking for a battle against Auburn due to the similar styles of play. Auburn loves to press off made baskets, and they will not shrink from the UK press either. Auburn is now 13-5, 2-3 in SEC play. They have shooters, and they have tough defenders. Hasina Muhammad ranks fourth in the conference and leads three Auburn players in double-digit scoring with 16.9 points per game. Guard Tyrese Tanner and Blanche Alverson follow with 13.1 and 12.4 ppg, respectively. Muhammad also leads Auburn on the boards with 5.9 rpg.

UK is still leading the nation in turnover margin at 10.28, and they are holding opponents to 37.1 FG%. The Forty Minutes Of Dread defense just keeps getting tighter and tighter. UK is now at 17-1, 5-0 in SEC play and looking to push deeper into the SEC Schedule without a loss. Look for UK to continue to do what they do. They are going to step on the gas at the tip and they won't let off until the final buzzer sounds. Coming off that 100-47 lambasting of Mississippi State, they will need to guard against a letdown while playing the Tigers. A'Dia Mathies and DeNesha Stallworth should keep UK where they need to be. UK by 13.

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