Coach Tony Barbee's Tigers will come into the contest with a 5-3 record following a 66-64 victory over Clemson. Barbee said his team made progress in its last outing while snapping a two-game losing streak. The coach noted that his players are excited.
"We have to still keep taking steps because we are not all the way where we need to be, but I think there was a lesson learned," he said after his team lost an 11-point first half and fell behind by nine points in the second half before rallying. "No matter the situation in any game, whether you are up 10 or you are down 10, there is always enough time. If we lose a game it is only because we ran out of time, not because we stopped fighting.
"I think that was a lesson that we have been harping on for a long time and we harped on it even more all last week before the game and I am glad to see it paid off for the guys," Barbee added.
The Tigers go into Sunday's game with an all-time record of 110-103 vs. teams from the ACC. Boston College, a team that defeated the Tigers last season, comes into the contest with a 4-7 record following a 67-50 victory over Philadelphia University.
Last season's ACC Freshman of the Year, Oliver Hanlan, was the key player for the Eagles in their 50-49 victory over the Tigers last year at Boston. This season the 6-4 Canadian is averaging 19.4 points per game with the help of 85.7 free throw shooting.
"They are a skilled team," Barbee said. "Their offense has five guys on the floor that can beat you in a variety of ways. They have some pros on that team, some guys that are going to be playing at the next level, so it's going to be a difficult match-up because of how they are able to score the ball."
Ryan Anderson, a 6-9 junior forward, is averaging 16.9 points and 7.2 rebounds for the Eagles, who are shooting 46 percent from the field while being out-rebounded by just under three per game. Opponents are hitting 47 percent from the field vs. BC.
A key for the Tigers will be keeping Boston College away from the foul line. The Eagles are making 80 percent of their free throws, which is third nationally.
Auburn freshman point guard Tajh Shamsid-Deen said the victory over Clemson was a "great win" for the Tigers. "We were on a two-game skid so to get a win against an ACC team that was 8-2 was very big. I know it's early in the season, but that seemed like it was a must-win for us and I'm glad we got the win."
The freshman said the win vs. Clemson was exciting to the team. "There's a lot of energy. Guys want to come out and get this win. Guys are coming out to practice with a lot of energy getting ready for Sunday."
Commenting on Boston College, Shamsid-Deen said, "They are a very good shooting team so we definitely have to guard and get down and play defense. We are looking forward to the game and can't wait for Sunday."
Senior guard Chris Denson leads Auburn and all SEC players with his average of 19.8 points per game. Junior guard K.T. Harrell is averaging 17.9 points per contest.
Sunday's game will be televised by CSS.