College Sports

Region Gameday: Saturday’s college basketball games to watch

Duke freshman R.J. Barrett averages 23.6 points and 7.2 rebounds for the Blue Devils, who will play host to Yale on Saturday.
Duke freshman R.J. Barrett averages 23.6 points and 7.2 rebounds for the Blue Devils, who will play host to Yale on Saturday. cliddy@newsobserver.com

CLEMSON (6-2) vs. No. 22 MISSISSIPPI STATE (7-1)

Prudential Center, Newark, N.J., 4 p.m., ESPN2

This is the opening game of the Never Forget Tribute Classic, with Florida State facing UConn in the 6 p.m. finale. Clemson is coming off a forgettable 65-60 victory over Saint Peter’s, with Marcquise Reed getting 21 points and three steals. Mississippi State has five players averaging in double figures and is shooting 47 percent from the floor.

YALE (4-2) at No. 3 DUKE (8-1)

Cameron Indoor Stadium, 5:30 p.m., ESPN

Yale likes to run the floor and shoot 3-pointers, and the Bulldogs have been near or above the 100-point mark three times this season. The Blue Devils are getting 23.6 points and 7.2 rebounds a game from freshman R.J. Barrett.

SOUTH CAROLINA (4-4) at No. 5 MICHIGAN (9-0)

Crisler Center, Ann Arbor, Mich., noon, FS1

The visiting Gamecocks, with three freshman starters, hit only 3-of-20 3-pointers in their midweek loss at Wyoming. That doesn’t bode well against a Michigan team that ranks No. 1 nationally in several defensive categories. The Wolverines have won 23 of their past 24 games, going back to last February.

N.C. CENTRAL (4-5) at APPALACHIAN STATE (3-5)

Holmes Convocation Center, Boone, 2 p.m.

The visiting Eagles have won three in a row and have had four different players lead the team in scoring in their past four games. The Mountaineers have played well of late, with two victories, a two-point road loss and an overtime road loss.

JOHNSON & WALES (4-4) at GARDNER-WEBB (5-5)

Porter Arena, Boiling Springs, 3 p.m.

Robert Hobson of Huntersville averages 14.3 points and 5.0 rebounds for Johnson & Wales, which plays a mostly Division III schedule but is coming off a 127-93 loss to The Citadel. ...Jose Perez has been the leading scorer in three of the past four games for Gardner-Webb, which has won three in a row.

JOHNSON C. SMITH (2-3) at ANDERSON (4-3)

Abney Athletic Center, Anderson, S.C., 4 p.m.

The visiting Golden Bulls are playing for the first time in nine days. Cayse Minor had 20 points and nine rebounds in their 70-68 victory Nov. 29 at Lees-McRae. ...Anderson last played a week ago and gave Queens fits, losing 79-77. Shawn Bernard had 22 points and nine assists in that game.

LINCOLN MEMORIAL (5-2, 2-0 South Atlantic) at No. 21 QUEENS (8-2, 2-0)

Levine Center, Charlotte, 4 p.m.

These teams have dominated the conference and the Division II Southeast Region in recent years, and both are hitting their stride after shaky starts. ...Cornelius Taylor (21.0 points a game) leads Lincoln Memorial, but he is shooting only 39 percent from the floor. ...Daniel Carr (17.7 points a game) and Shaun Willett (17.0 points, 10.0 rebounds) lead the Royals.

Steve Lyttle

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