MBB Game Preview: Georgia vs. Tennessee

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MBB Game Preview: Georgia vs. Tennessee

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Georgia (10-5, 0-2 SEC) vs. Tennessee (10-5, 2-1 SEC)

Wednesday, January 15 at 7:00 p.m. ET

Stegeman Coliseum (10,523) in Athens, Ga.

Watch: ESPNU (Kevin Fitzgerald, play-by-play; Fran Fraschilla, analyst)

Listen: Georgia Bulldog Sports Network Flagship: WSB AM 750 Atlanta. XM: 385; Internet: 975. (Scott Howard, play-by-play; Chuck Dowdle, analyst; Adam Gillespie, producer)

The Starting Five

• Anthony Edwards is the nation’s top-scoring freshman at 18.7 ppg and one of only four first-year players ranked among the top-100 scorers in D-I.

• UGA started three freshmen at Auburn – Toumani Camara, Anthony Edwards and Sahvir Wheeler. That was a first since Dec. 31, 2008 vs. Kennesaw St.

• UGA’s win at No. 9 Memphis was just the second victory in a road non-conference game in program history…and the first since Dec. 28, 1977, at Louisville.

• Six of nine SEC games at Stegeman Coliseum are now sellouts – Kentucky, Ole Miss, Texas A&M, Alabama, Arkansas and Florida.

• Georgia’s celebrated freshman class – ranked among the top-10 groups nationally by every recruiting service – features five of the nation’s top-100 prospects.

Tye Fagan
Tye Fagan

The Opening Tip

Georgia returns to Stegeman Coliseum this Wednesday to host Tennessee. The Bulldogs are 8-1 at Stegeman this season and averaging 9,331 fans through the first nines games.

The contest is part of the Bulldogs’ grueling stretch to open SEC play against six straight 2019 NCAA Tournament teams.

Georgia is 10-5 overall and 0-2 in SEC play. The Bulldogs began league action with setbacks to No. 14 Kentucky and No. 5 Auburn.

Anthony Edwards, a preseason All-American and leading National Freshman of the Year candidate, paces Georgia and is ranked No. 3 in the SEC in scoring at 18.7 ppg. Rayshaun Hammonds is the league’s third-leading rebounder (9.1 rpg) and also ranks No. 16 in scoring (13.6 ppg). 

Fans have been flocking to Stegeman this season. The current 9,331 average is on pace to be the second-best effort in school history (trailing only 9,857 in 2002-03). Considering five of the Bulldogs’ eight remaining SEC home dates already are sellouts, Georgia could approach a school-record mark by season’s end.

Rally Towels For Students

UGA students in Stegeman’s lower-level seats Wednesday will receive a Dawg Pound rally towel.

Keeping An Eye On . . . Entering Today’s Game Among UGA’s career Leaders

Tyree Crump is…

• 17 3FGs from No. 10 Jody Patton

• 24 3FGs from No. 9 Bernard Davis

• 32 3FGAs from No. 8 G.G. Smith

Series History

Despite a 39-33 advantage for Georgia in games in Athens, Tennessee owns a 95-61 lead in the all-time series between UGA and UT. 

Tennessee has won each of the last two matchups after Georgia captured the previous five outings, the Bulldogs’ longest string of success since winning six straight matchups between 1993-95.

In the last meeting in Athens on Feb. 17, 2018, Yante Maten’s game-high 19 points led five Bulldogs in double digits in a 73-62 upset No. 18 Tennessee at a sold-out Stegeman Coliseum.

Maten started hot, scoring 11 points in the opening 10:59. That staked Georgia to a 13-8 lead it never relinquished the rest of the way. The margin grew to 21-12 before Tennessee closed the gap to two points at halftime. 

The Bulldogs quickly regained control quickly after the intermission, pushing their lead back 38-28 in less than three minutes. The Vols made is a one-possession game twice thereafter. Tennessee pulled within 54-51 at the 5:14 mark, but Tyree Crump nailed a 3-pointer to open a 9-3 run that made it 63-54 with 94 seconds remaining.

Last season on Jan. 5 in Knoxville, No. 3 Tennessee used an early 11-0 run to gain distance en route to a 96-50 victory over Georgia in both team’s SEC opener.

The Volunteers led 14-12 before going on an 11-0 surge that gave them a 25-12 lead with 9:17 remaining in the opening half.

Derek Ogbeide was a bright spot for Georgia, scoring 17 points by connecting on 6-of-9 shots from the floor and 5-of-7 free throws. 

Scouting The Volunteers

After opening the season with five victories and climbing as high as No. 16 in the coaches poll, Tennessee 10-5 overall. The Vols are riding a two-game SEC winning streak.

The Vols‘ suffered a significant blow when they lost guard Lamonte Turner for the season due to a lingering shoulder injury. Turner, a preseason All-SEC pick, announced his decision to undergo season-ending surgery following Tennessee‘s Dec. 21 win over Jacksonville State.

Still, the Vols‘ balanced offense features a quartet of double-digit scorers. After dropping the SEC opener against LSU, Tennessee has rallied to win its last two league outings.

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Greg is closing in on 11 years writing about and photographing UGA sports. While often wrong and/or out of focus, it has been a long, strange trip full of fun and new friends.