Deandre Burnett, came into last night’s Ole Miss basketball game questionable after dealing with knee injuries. The same knee injuries forced Burnett to miss the regular season finale against South Carolina. The last time we saw Burnett, he struggled his way through an 0-7 performance against Alabama. But last night, Burnett came through in a big way.
Deandre Burnett And Upperclassmen Have Big Night
Ole Miss Rebels Basketball
Ole Miss came out shooting the lights out in Nashville last night as a team. Deandre Burnett, in particular, was lights out. He had 16 in the first half behind a perfect 6-6 from the field and 4-4 from the 3-pt line. Burnett finished the night with 23 points and, more importantly, looked healthy doing it.
Fresh off his winning the C Spire Howell Trophy this past week, Sebastian Saiz added his 20th double-double of the season. He dominated the Missouri front-line on the glass, snagging 16 rebounds behind 14 points.
Also, the Rebels got an efficient night from Terence Davis, who had struggled lately. Coming into last night’s game, Davis had gone 12-40 from the field over the past two weeks. Against Missouri, Davis was able to get wherever he wanted against the physically over-matched Missouri team. He also avoided fouling, something that has plagued him recently.
Ole Miss Gets To The Free Throw Line
If Ole Miss basketball is going to win the SEC Tournament, they will need to get to the line a lot. Coming into last night’s game, the Rebels were 10th in the NCAA in free throw attempts and 2nd in free throws made. Against Mizzou, the Rebels got to the line early and often.
Ole Miss attempted a whopping 47 free throws (!!!) last night. Both Saiz and Burnett attempted more than 10 free throw attempts. While the Rebels would like to make a higher percentage of their free throws – they went 31-47 last night – Andy Kennedy has to be pleased with his team’s mentality.
Even as an Ole Miss fan, last night’s game was never in doubt. And if this Ole Miss team wants to dance in a few weeks, that’s how things should’ve been. Mizzou, playing behind a lame-duck coach, got frustrated in the second half where things got chippy.
Thankfully, the Rebels kept their cool and escaped the game without incident.
Ole Miss Gets Another Shot Against Arkansas
Ole Miss baskeball came into the SEC Tournament needing to win three games to realistically get on the NCAA Tournament bubble. After taking down Mizzou, the Rebels will now take on a streaking Arkansas club.
The last time we faced the Razorbacks, we were run out of the Wal-Mart Coliseum (aka Bud Walton Arena) 98-80. Daryl Macon scored a career-best 30 for Arkansas and the Rebels suffered through a dismal defensive night. In fact, it was one our worst defensive performance of the season as we allowed Arkansas to shoot nearly 50%.
The Rebels are also getting hot, having won 8 of 11. To keep it going and to keep the NCAA Tournament hopes alive, the Rebels will need a big night from Deandre Burnett who had 27 against Arkansas in February. Also, the Rebels will need to get to the free throw line.
Do just that and the Ole Miss basketball team will have a shot to possibly punch their ticket to the NCAA Tournament with a win in the SEC Tournament semifinals against the winner of Florida-Vandy.