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Cinmeon Bowers confident Auburn beats Kentucky; Tigers guards are better than UK's

Tyler Ulis is quietly sitting somewhere sipping some tea waiting for Saturday...

Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

You many not know who Cinmeon Bowers is (I didn't either until today), but he may be the key to Saturday's clash between the Kentucky Wildcats and Auburn Tigers.

Auburn's senior forward is quietly having a good season for the 7-8 Tigers, and he's also not afraid to poke the bear that is the 14th-ranked Wildcats. Though UK mopped the floor with Auburn in their two matchups last year, Bowers made sure to point out this isn't the same group that went 38-1 and went to their fourth Final Four in five seasons.

"We confident about Kentucky now," Bowers said. "This ain’t like last year. This isn’t the same Kentucky. They’re beatable. If we play with energy, play smart and finish on the offensive end, then we can beat this Kentucky. We know that."

Bowers said that after posting a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds in 32 minutes against Vanderbilt during a 75-57 defeat to the Dores. Auburn is still in the midst of a long rebuild under second-year coach Bruce Pearl, but Bowers thinks his Tigers have a great shot vs Kentucky.

"They're not really a good shooting team like that, so just make them drive, attack their bigs," Bowers said. "They're not like how (they were) last year, you know what I'm saying? You couldn't really attack them because they were blocking every shot. We need to attack them, get them in foul trouble, get into their bench."

Fair point. There's no question this year's Kentucky team is not the caliber of last year's squad, but that doesn't mean these Cats still aren't a Final Four contender. While the frontcourt has a lot of issues, the clear strength of this this UK team is their backcourt, which few teams in college basketball have a better version of.

I doubt Auburn is among those teams with better guards, but don't tell Bowers that.

"I believe our guards are better than their guards," Bowers said. "Kareem Canty, Bryce Brown, TJ Lang, New Williams, even Jordon Granger being a senior, tougher, taller. I think we're going to have a good chance. We're going to make it a good game."

Honestly, as bad as UK has looked at times this season against some bad teams, Auburn may have had a shot to make this a close game that came down to the wire, but not if they insist on giving UK some added motivation to make a point Saturday that they're the superior team.