OXFORD • When Kermit Davis was getting to know his Ole Miss players, he floated the idea to Breein Tyree that Tyree move to shooting guard.
Tyree had been a point guard and a nine-points-a-game scorer his first two seasons.
Since moving to shooting guard the Somerset, New Jersey, native averaged 17.9 points last year and carries a 20.1-points per game average into his final home game tonight.
It’s an 8 p.m. tip against Missouri, and the game will air on the SEC Network. Tyree is the Rebels’ lone senior.
“Just moving off the ball, that was coach Kermit’s idea based off his evaluation of my game and seeing that I’m a natural scorer. I think it really helped,” Tyree said.
Tyree has had 15 games of 20 or more points, three of 30 or more, this season. He went for a career-high 40 against Mississippi State in the Rebels’ 83-58 win on Feb. 11. Ole Miss closes the regular season in Starkville on Saturday.
“I don’t know that I’ve ever given a guy that much freedom to play,” said Davis, the Rebels’ second-year coach. “It’s just how he’s built. He scores at all the levels.”
Tyree had 28 points in the Rebels’ 71-68 loss at Missouri two weeks ago. That came in a stretch where he scored 23 or more in five out of six games.
He’s been held under 20 his last two games with 16 at Auburn and 11 against Vanderbilt last week.
Tyree occasionally handles the point now when Devontae Shuler is out of the game.
“That was part of our early conversation,” Davis said of the position move. “It just frees him up to play. He’s built to score.”