Ole Miss remains perfect on the season after an 85-75 win Monday night over Eastern Kentucky, and the good guys return to action tonight to take on Georgia State. Andy Kennedy and the Rebs will undoubtedly use this contest to iron out some defensive issues before taking on Utah on Monday in the MGM Resorts Main Event in Las Vegas.
Terence Davis came off the bench against Eastern Kentucky earlier this week, but still finished with 16 points and six rebounds, and Deandre Burnett was 4-of-5 from three-point range to put away the Colonels early, jumping out to a double-digit lead for most of the game before closing them out for good by 10.
Ole Miss still needs to clean things up defensively — they allowed Eastern Kentucky to shoot over 50 percent from the field, but Kennedy’s boys took over on the offensive glass, gobbling up boards left and right and getting second chance opportunities. Marcanvis Hymon looks like a created player at the moment, playing like his hair was on fire (nine offensive rebounds in two games). Look for him to take over again as Georgia State only has two players that are taller than 6’5.
Ole Miss also needs Dominik Olejniczak to take over as well, especially in non-conference games against inferior competition AND size. The 7-footer is still getting his bearings after having to sit out due to transfer rules, but one would imagine that AK would love for him to be clicking on all proverbial cylinders by the time SEC play starts. The Rebs don’t necessarily need him to be the scorer that Sebastian Saiz was, but more of the shot-blocker and intimidating force that Reginald Buckner was back in 2013.
One of the pleasant suprises of the young season has been the true freshman Devontae Shuler. The only thing quicker than a Jordan Ta’amu touchdown drive may be his pull-up jumper. And it will be tested Friday night. Georgia State loves their guard play — the Panthers lead the country in defensive turnover rate — and that means Shuler, Terence Davis and Markel Crawford must show off their speed and handles in order to keep the offense in rhythm.
Where: The Pavilion, Oxford, Miss. When: 6 p.m. CT TV: Nah Online streaming: WatchESPN