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South Carolina vs. Auburn Prediction: Can Auburn Snap South Carolina’s Seven-Game Win Streak?

Written by: Andrew Norton
Published February 14, 2024
10 min read

The No. 11 South Carolina Gamecocks (21-3) face one of their biggest challenges yet when they travel to the state of Alabama for a (potentially) conference title-deciding matchup with the No. 13 Auburn Tigers (19-5). South Carolina sits in first place in the SEC with a 9-2 record in conference play, while Alabama (9-2) and Auburn (8-3) follow closely behind. This game could separate the Gamecocks further from the Tigers, or could catapult Auburn within one-half of a game of the Crimson Tide.

With the 2023-24 regular season nearing an end, as most SEC teams have only seven games left, each matchup becomes increasingly vital for the Auburn Tigers and South Carolina Gamecocks. An SEC regular season conference championship could be on the line! See our South Carolina Gamecocks vs. Auburn Tigers prediction and game preview below to find out which team we are backing in this top-25 battle!

South Carolina vs Auburn Prediction

South Carolina Gamecocks vs. Auburn Tigers Betting Odds for Wednesday, Feb. 14

Despite holding a higher ranking (11th nationally in the most recent A.P. Poll), the South Carolina Gamecocks enter this road game against Auburn as 11-point underdogs, a hefty spread for a conference game between two ranked squads. The point total for this SEC matchup sits at 138.5 points, with both the Over and Under holding -110 odds.

Teams Spread Moneyline Total
South Carolina Gamecocks +11 (-110) N/A Over 138.5 (-110)
Auburn Tigers -11 (-110) N/A Under 138.5 (-110)

Odds from BetMGM Sportsbook. Use our BetMGM promo code WSNMGM - bet $5, get $150 in bonus bets.

When was the last time an away team ranked higher than their opponent entered a game as an 11-point underdog? It is hard to say, but this is undoubtedly a rare situation, especially without significant injuries to key players. Eleven points is a sizable spread for an apparent mismatch, regardless of conference. However, for the first-place team in the SEC through two-thirds of conference play to be a double-digit dog, there must be a significant discrepancy between their ranking and any pertinent advanced analytics on the matchup.

In this particular case, that could be the reason. While South Carolina ranks 11th in the A.P. Poll, KenPom’s adjusted efficiency margin has the Gamecocks as the 45th-best team nationally, while EvanMiya has them at 41st in BPR. That sort of difference between the analytical rankings and the A.P. Poll does not occur often.

Still, South Carolina has been extraordinarily impressive through mid-February, holding a 9-2 record in the SEC (first place) and a 21-3 record overall. That is borderline unfathomable for a team projected to finish dead last in the SEC in the preseason media poll. The loss of standout freshman G.G. Jackson, who has already logged some minutes in the NBA this season, looked like it would crush the Gamecocks. Additionally, Hayden Brown and Chico Carter Jr., the third and fourth-leading scorers from last year’s squad, also left the program. Brown graduated, and Carter Jr. transferred. 

However, Meechie Johnson has taken on a leading role offensively, posting more than 14 points per game for the Gamecocks. Newcomers B.J. Mack (Wofford), Myles Stute (Vanderbilt), and Ta’Lon Cooper (Minnesota) have also stepped up to fill in the offensive gaps.

This group has put together an unexpected yet strong season, ranking 50th in adjusted offensive efficiency and 51st in adjusted defensive efficiency. 

Meanwhile, Johni Broome and company have helped catapult the Auburn Tigers into contending status. Broome is one of the best two-way forces in the country, averaging 16 points, 8.6 rebounds, and 3.4 “stocks” (steals and blocks combined) on 55.5% shooting from the field. Joining Broome in the frontcourt is Jaylin Williams, a 6-foot-8 senior forward whose efficiency (58/39/81) is bordering on elite. Auburn also has a barrage of guards to deploy, including Chad Baker-Mazara, Aden Holloway, Denver Jones, K.D. Johnson, and Tre Donaldson. 

Auburn ranks favorably amongst the experts and their advanced analytics. In fact, the Tigers are fifth in both KenPom’s adjusted efficiency margin and in BPR, per EvanMiya. Auburn’s exceptional defense, especially on its home floor, has made it virtually impossible to beat there, evidenced by the Tigers’ recent 18-point beatdown on now-No. 15 Alabama.

Find out below if the Tigers can put together a similar performance against this South Carolina squad!

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South Carolina Gamecocks vs. Auburn Tigers Prediction and Betting Pick

At home, Auburn’s dominance on the defensive end of the floor is almost unmatched, save teams like the Houston Tigers and Tennessee Volunteers. The Tigers rank sixth in opponent eFG% at home; they are virtually impossible to score on in the paint due to Broome’s elite rim presence. And if the Gamecocks lack one thing in their starting lineup, it is size. That does not help their cause.

On the perimeter, Auburn allows opponents to shoot merely 29.7% from behind the arc, but it is less dominant there than in the paint. Still, the Tigers are not going to have to worry too much about this besides Myles Stute and Ta’Lon Cooper, who are holding the Gamecocks’ shooting average from three-point land above water. 

If the Tigers funnel those two players inside the arc and allow the rest of the South Carolina players to take threes or try to meet Broome in the paint, the Gamecocks simply won’t have enough offensive output to keep this game close. 

Auburn is tenth in average scoring margin on its floor for a reason. The Tigers have an 11-0-1 record at home against this spread line (-11), and there is no reason they should not continue that streak here. 

How to Watch South Carolina Gamecocks vs. Auburn Tigers

  • When: Wednesday, Feb. 14 @ 5:30/8:30 p.m. PT/ET

  • Where: Neville Arena, Auburn, AL

  • TV: ESPN

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AUTHOR

Andrew Norton

148 Articles

Andrew has always been an avid sports fan and followed his hoop dreams all the way to college. He’s well-versed in everything betting with multiple years of experience and is qualitatively and quantitatively knowledgeable in sports statistics and analytics.

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