Ole Miss heads to Knoxville to learn art of rebounding

There's been a couple moments this season when I have thrown items across the room while watching Ole Miss basketball.

One of which was during a few free throw attempts by West Virginia. The shot left the WVU player's hand, the ball missed the hoop and West Virginia rebounded it. This is something that should almost never, ever happen.

Rebounding has become a liability for the Rebels this season. Our defensive rebounding percentage is ranked 305th in the nation. There's 304 teams with better defensive rebounding rates than our squad. 

This includes the mighty Tennessee Volunteers, ranked #78 in defensive rebounding percentage. 

The key to sticking it to the Vols tomorrow will be making shots. The proof is from Auburn's first half just yesterday.

Let me get this out of the way before I get more reasonable and logical. BRUCE PEARL IS A SACK OF SLIMY SHIT.

WAYNE CHISM, FIX YOUR DAMN HEADBAND. 

SKYLAR MCBEE, YOU ARE THE NEXT DANE BRADSHAW AND THAT'S NOT A GOOD THING. GO WATCH MORE EPISODES OF REBA.

SCOTTY HOPSON, okay, you're just really fuckin' good. I'm not going to hate.

Tennessee has a ton of weapons on offense(pun intended). Ole Miss doesn't really play more than 15-20 minutes of defense per game.

Knoxville is full of idiots who will pack "The Summit" to give full-throated support to the Vols through thick and thin. It's going to be a raucous atmosphere not yet experienced by the Rebels. West Virginia is probably the closest example of what to expect will happen on Saturday. 

If any of you watched the Tennessee-Auburn game, you might have noticed three pointers flying often from the Tigers. It's something they live and die by, and for the first half, had the Vols on their heels. 

Ole Miss needs to shoot well from the perimeter and in the mid-range. Terrico White has to step up in these situations like he did early in the second half against Georgia. The Rebels seem to love the pull-up jumpers, and enough open looks could sink the Vols. 

Tennessee seems to have good enough athleticism on the boards to win the rebounding margin. They've got all the confidence in the world after knocking off Kansas. Depth is a concern down the road, but I don't think the loss of a few players has hit them yet in that regard.

I can't quite decide if Bruce Pearl is a great coach yet or not. The clipboard match-up seems to be in his favor however. Andy Kennedy has made some questionable decisions with his rotation this year, and he doesn't let our big men get into very much of a rhythm. Terrance Henry and Reginald Buckner need more minutes especially when Deaundre Cranston is throwing up threes and Murphy Holloway becomes the invisible 6'6'' man.

The transition game for both teams is explosive, dunks are expected, lots of running and gunning. I'd love to see a lot of back and forth scoring in this one, because for some reason, it seems like the Rebels have another gear defensively they can shift up to when they are instructed to. 

A close win in Athens is not something to hang your season on, however, I think it psychologically boosted the team to be ready for the Vols. 

Crash the boards, take the open shots and shut up all the folks in putrid orange. Go Rebs.

Final prediction

Ole Miss 86

Tennessee 85

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