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This Week in Ole Miss Basketball: REVENGE IN NORMAL

Road test marks only scheduled game this week.

Josh McCoy-Ole Miss Athletics

It’s finals week.

So you may be a student reading this, and I would usually absolutely recommend spending your time on RCR as often as possible. However, please not this week - study, don’t drink too much and make good grades.

There’s a massive Christmas break coming up where you can debauch, gain 15 lbs., and maybe meet up with people you went to high school with who never left town.

But basketball has a light week because of finals with only one game against Illinois St. in Normal, Ill. on Saturday. The Redbirds defeated Ole Miss last season in Oxford in an overtime thriller that marked the beginning of a disappointing season.

Ole Miss will go into this tilt with a 5-2 record after a 2-0 finish last week.

The win over San Diego is apparently a BIG deal!

Five Rebels scored in the double digits led by Breein Tyree with 22 points to topple San Diego 93-86.

Most exciting out of this game is freshmen KJ Buffen and Blake Hinson combining for 30 points, 15 each in the win. Buffen and Hinson have come along quicker than the Cup expected and have already proven pretty competent, regular contributors.

The Toreros look to be a pretty solid squad led by three seniors who scored more than 60 of the team’s points. Ole Miss was in control most of this game, but USD really wouldn’t go quietly as they generated 21 points off 14 Rebel turnovers.

USD plays in the competitive mid-major West Coast Conference where only one sub-.500 team resides along with #1 Gonzaga. If they can stay competitive, this win could pay off for the Rebels.

A dunk contest broke out against ULM.

Tyree went off again for 20 points in a 83-60 win over the hapless Warhawks in the debut of our very good powder blue uni’s. Two of the 20 came in the form of a fast break reverse dunk that got the crowd of 6,100 to its feet - ok, maybe like half of them to their feet.

Terence Davis added 15 points including one breakaway dunk that he cocked to the side before thundering down. Davis also had a 360 dunk go awry in the second half, but he collected the rebound, missed a lay-up, fought off two Warhawks for another rebound and got the second lay-up to go in.

Truly, ULM might be the worst team we’ve played thus far.

Rebs out for Redbird Revenge on Saturday.

Ole Miss will hit the road for Saturday’s game against Illinois State (6-3) in the second part of a home and home that was schedule via Twitter.

The Rebels lost to ISU last season 101-97 in overtime in a game that the Redbirds really controlled for the most part. Bruce Stevens was the leading scorer last year with 27 points, and he is still on Ole Miss’ roster, which is actually good!

The Redbirds finished 18-15 last season, but they seem to have rebounded this year starting out 6-3 so far on the season. Losses to Georgia on a neutral site, at Belmont and San Diego St. at home most recently paints this team as absolutely beatable if the Rebels play well.

After Saturday’s game, the Rebels play three of its next four games in the state of Mississippi before entering Southeastern Conference play.