Saturday, December 30, 2006

Tide struggles early, pull away late from the Bisons

Led by Mykal Riley with 21 points, Alabama pulls away late for a comfortable 80-58 win over the Bisons (shouldn't it be Bison?).
Box Score

The game was much closer than the score indicates... we only led by 5 with 8 minutes to go before pulling away. Hendrix had another double-double (18/11) and Davidson came close (16/9). Steele is still not himself, but he did log 37 minutes (too many if you ask me, but he must be feeling better) and finished with 8 points and 6 assists (and 3 TOs).

Scott Sanderson (son of Wimp) had his kids ready to play. Libscomb put up a fight... like they've done against other SEC competition (Vandy and South Carolina). This was a good win... and a nice tune up to the Oklahoma game on New Years Day.

The good:
- Only 9 turnovers. That might be a season low (haven't checked).
- Shot the ball well (27-53 FG, 10-23 3Pt FG, and 16-21 FT)
- Outrebounded the Bisons (still doesn't sound right) 36 to 23

The bad:
- 4 starters logged 33 minutes or more. This isn't supposed to happen. Minutes should be more evenly distributed in a game like this.
- Addendum to above... not enough time for Hollinger and Torrance at the point. I think this will bite us in the ass later in the year.
- Gee was way off tonight... although he did other things well that don't show up in the box score.

I'm going to gripe for a minute... CMG has got to get the bench more involed in the game. It's not like last year when we only had 2 viable options (some would say 1) off the bench. We have some good talent (Hollinger, Torrance, Jemison, Coleman, Tubbs), but only get 14 minutes for MT, DJ, YC, and JT. If we don't get the bench involved in games like this, how are they to gain experience?

I forgot to add this little nugget about Cloyd possibly transferring. Strange considering all the effort to get him cleared.

Alabama freshman guard Verice Cloyd was not in attendance at the game Friday. Gottfried addressed the media following the game stating Cloyd is considering a transfer.

“Verice Cloyd wasn’t with us tonight. He’s contemplating transfering. Like a lot of young players, he wants to play. Playing time is a real issue there. We are going to do everything we can to help him. He has 18 hours under his belt here at Christmas of his first year of college. He has a 2.7 GPA. He has been very, very good academically. If he chooses to transfer, we will help him in any way we can. He’s been very, very good here with us but kids want to play. I have no problems helping guys with those decisions.”


Cloyd transfering?

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Lipscomb stats pack


They're 0-2 vs the SEC so far... make that 0-3 after Friday.
Bisons stats pack

Three guys log 30 minutes per game (Trey Williams, Brian Fisk, and Eddie Ard). They're 8-4 with 3 losses coming to Vandy, South Carolina (both close) and Missouri (a blowout).

The stats:
- 41% from the field
- 34% from 3 (Fisk and Williams are both over 40% and take most of the 3s)
- 70% from the line
- Outrebounded by roughly 2.5 per game
- Tallest player that sees the court regularly is 6'8" (Thomas Pfarr). I expect another monster game by Hendrix.

Former Crimson Tide walk-on LaKory Daniels is getting 14 MPG with Lipscomb. I don't remember him to be honest. Link to his bio.

Gametime is Friday at 8PM EST (7 CST) on CSS. I have to check if directv is getting the feed or not. Chances are I'm stuck with internet radio.

Prediction- Alabama by 13. I expect it to be somewhat close throughout the 1st half.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

SEC week in review (12/18-12/24)

Tennessee had a big week... first they knock off Oklahoma State and then come back from a 15 point deficit (from memory... I might be off a few points) to beat Texas. Right now they're the 3rd best team in the SEC.

Florida demolished Ohio State... when the Gators are on their game there's no one that can beat them. NO ONE!

Arkansas continues to lose. Texas beats them in a close game. Stan Heath is still sooo fired.

Washington manhandles LSU. I've said from the beginning this is an overrated Bengal Tiger squad.

Auburn plays A&M close... until tipoff. Also, UGA goes down to Tech.

A better non-conference showing for the SEC. Let's see what happens this week.

Dec 28th:
- UGA goes to undefeated Clemson.

Dec 30th:
- Miss St goes to George Mason. GMU isn't very good, but it should still be a tough game.
- Florida gets to paste UAB

Dec 31st:
- UGA has Wisconsin at home. I think the Badgers are overrated (like their football team).

Jan 1st:
- Alabama gets Oklahoma at Coleman. I'll comment on this game as it gets closer.

Weak week... but that's to be expect this time of year.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

The best game we've played start to finish. Coppin State blowout.

I can't complain about anything in this game. I tried to at the end, but a last second shot allowed the team to double Coppin State.
Box score

Gee couldn't miss, Hendrix dominated inside, Steele was perfect from the field, and Davidson played well considering all the off the court things he's had to deal with. This is what I was hoping for today.

The good:
- Rebounding (51-19), shooting from the field (61%), and from 3 (50%)
- Everyone got to play and we got much needed PT for Hollinger and Torrance at the point.
- Gee led the team in minutes played with 25.
- FT shooting... minus Coleman (1-4). The rest of the team was perfect (9-9).

The bad:
- Turnovers... not a big deal today as this game was a laugher early.
- We didn't get Dill and Sellers on the board. Everyone else scored.

All in all, this is what the doctor ordered. Great play and getting the bench some PT.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Coppin State stats pack


I think this is the worst team we'll see this season. They are AUful.
Coppin State stats pack

The Eagles are undefeated at home (1-0... with 224 in attendance) and did play Kansas State somewhat competitive in Manhattan, but overall... yuck. Virginia Tech beat them by 50... OUCH!

Tywain McKee seems to be their only offensive option... he's averaging 19.4 PPG. He's also 2nd in rebounds (4.4) and leads the team in assists (33), steals (17) and turnovers (42).

As a team they shoot 40% from the field, 33% from 3, 65% from the line, and are dominated on the boards by an average of 11 per game. Hendrix, Davidson (if he plays), Gee, Coleman, and Mark's Madness should have a field day down inside.

All signs point to blowout. This game should be over by halftime... that way Steele can sit and we can get some much needed experience for Hollinger and Torrance (where is he) at the point. Heck, we should be able to empty the bench by the 5 minute mark of the 2nd half. Prediction- Alabama by 35.

Gametime is 3PM EST (2 Central) tomorrow afternoon.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

YAY! Hendrix dominates inside to lead us past the Wolfpack


Led by Hendrix's 23 points and 12 board the Crimson Tide hold back a late comeback by NC State (I'll comment on the comeback later).
Box Score

First, I'll comment on individual players:

Davidson- he's on a game, off a game. He's got to be more consistent than that. Oh yeah, STOP SHOOTING FROM BEYOND 15 FEET!
Hendrix- a monster game. He led us in the 1st half and then some.
Gee- flashes of brilliance, but for the most part neutralized.
Steele- better than I expected. Still not the RS we know... someone carry him to classes.
Riley- solid. Check that... very good.
Hollinger- arrgh. Frustrating at the end... ok up to about the 5 minute mark of the 2nd half.

The good:
- Had a 21 point lead on the road
- Dominated the boards
- Shot well from the field (27/59) and beyond the arc (7/15)

The bad:
- Turnovers... this is becoming a broken record
- Losing focus late in the game. A scrappy Wolfpack team made it more than interesting in the final minutes.

The late comeback by NC State... give Lowe's team credit for never quitting. They went hard after every pass and defended every shot (maybe too well if you know what I mean), but we got to be able to handle pressure. Hollinger shooting FTs down the stretch is something we should avoid like the plague. He's a PG and should shoot FTs like one... and handle the ball better.

I'm confused on substitutions now... Jemison was getting some PT, but now Coleman and Tubbs has surpassed him. I don't remember Jemison playing all that bad.

Oh yeah, someone put out an APB on Torrance. Did I miss an injury? I guess so. If he's not hurt, him and BH should split time as the backup PG.

NC State has more talent than I thought... and IMO should finish middle of the pack in the ACC. In the end it's a road win and I'll take it... I just wish we could coasted when we had the chance to.

Alias has issues logging in so here's his take (in blue):

This looked like a Joe Kines' sort of game: bend but don't break. Bama started strong and closed confused, but won a big game on the road.

The previous two seasons Bama tended to start cold and eventually warm its way into a game. This year they seem to start hot and then cold down. Perhaps that is attributable to all the youth on this team. I suspect that they get excited, and perhaps tired, as the game progresses and lose their focus on the things that got them the lead.

They also might have problems adjusting as games progress simply because they are young and inexperienced. These things do happen. Especially when you have only one junior and one senior on your team.

Other than Hollinger, Bama shot much better at the line tonight. Other than the last three minutes, Bama defended the three very well tonight. And several of those late threes were shot from the parking lot and/or off balanced in a hurry up manner. This was not just bad defense tonight.

Another huge plus is that Bama won a hack and claw game on the road. I didn't see a single charge called, even though both teams committed several. Few of the hacks and slashes were called, either under the basket or out on the floor. And for the second game in a row the opponents were allowed to push, slap and grab our guards all over the court. Our kids responded well and showed improvement. They need games like this one to keep improving in those areas.

Sure, Gee picked up his standard three silly reach in fouls. Sure, the officials did not call any of those touch fouls on NC State until they were trying to send us to the line. But Gee gets three per game regardless.

Bama did not wilt under the pressure. Instead, they showed they could begin to learn to play back in an aggressive, hacking manner. Our big guys got away with murder under the bucket, especially after they saw the officials were letting NCS do the same think on the other end.

We do need to do a better job of denying the ball in low. We won't be able to block shots by our SEC opponents. But they did what they had to do under the basket tonight.

Another big plus, Bama defended the three well. We had some break downs in the last few minutes. That happened after Davidson had fouled out and Steele was off the floor having his knee tended. Hollinger had a couple of problems handling the ball, but in fairness to him the officials were letting State get away with a good deal of pushing and hacking there at the end.

Bama committed three or four turnovers and missed 4 or 5 free throws during State's run at the end of the game. (Two turnovers and three missed free throws on My Man Hollinger.) They only had a few real break downs on defense during that run that were not attributable to kids like Coleman being in the game. But with their backs to the wall, all of State's shots dropping through the net, legitimate ball handling problems, and unfriendly officials, Bama still found a way to maintain their composure and hold on to win the game. Getting frazzled at the end might end up being as good a teaching tool as the butt-kicking they suffered at Notre Dame. Time will tell.

This was a good win. A solid win against a decent team. It beats the pants off of any "quality" loss. It also gives our kids some more experience that will help the younger players toward the end of the season.

I do think the coaches need to teach our kids how to get open runs at the basket when the defense extends out on the floor the way NCS and USM did. I'd be glad to tell them how if I only knew. And it was good to see everyone (except Davidson) shooting well tonight.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

NC State stats pack

Led by their 7th choice for head coach Sydney Lowe.
Wolfpack stats pack

Their 2 losses were on the road to West Virginia and Virginia... undefeated at home, but generally unimpressive. They played 6 against Mount St. Mary's and shouldn't go deeper than 7. They get Trevor Ferguson (transfer from Pitt) on the court for the first time against us. Watch him have a monster game... ugh.

They shoot 51% from the field, 32% from 3, and are 73% from the charity stripe. They don't rebound especially well (tallest guy playing is Costner at 6'8") so we really should be able to dominate inside (I know I've said this many times already, but we really should).

Prediction- we got to win one on the road and this is our best shot. This is a depleted Wolfpack squad with a first year head coach and not a whole lot of talent. Alabama scares the crap out of me, but wins by 3.

Gametime is 6:30PM EST tomorrow night on Fox Sports South (channel 630 on directv).

Monday, December 18, 2006

This week in the SEC

I'll try to make this a regular thing. It all depends on how much time I have. I'm keeping it to the SEC vs "name teams."

12/17
LSU wins at Oregon State 60-53. The Beavers stink, but it's a road win.

12/16
- UGA upset Gonzaga 96-83... big win for the SEC. The Dawgs are 7-1.
- Arkansas gets manhandled by Texas Tech in Little Rock 71-56. That's 2 bad losses (the other was an asskicking by Missouri). I firmly believe that Stan Heath will be fired at the end of the season. It's one year too late.
- Kentucky continues their recent dominance over Louisville 61-49. Louisville isn't very good... Pitino should've kept the basketball program in C-USA (g). Regardless, Kentucky seems to be improving... although I still think they're the 4th best team in their division.
- Ole Miss beats South Alabama (this is the exception to the "name school" but worth mentioning) in the 1st game of the Coors Classic 82-72. Rebels are 9-2 (losses to UConn and Memphis).

12/11
Mississippi State wins at Miami 70-52. Any road win is a good one.

Upcoming big games in the SEC:
12/18 (tonight)- Tennessee faces undefeated Oklahoma State in Nashville.
12/20- Arkansas plays Texas, LSU goes to Washington, and we go to Raleigh to play NC State.
12/22- Auburn plays Texas A&M, Kentucky has UMass, and UGA goes to GA Tech.
12/23- Texas plays Tennessee (did we invite the Longhorns to the SEC?) and Ohio State comes to Florida.
This week will tell us how good the SEC as a conference is. So far it's been disappointing.


Sunday, December 17, 2006

Second Add On for USM

Here are my good friend DJC's thoughts on the USM game. The kid is at least 25 years younger than I am and he's complaining about the drive. Sheesh! :-)

Add on to the USM review below

Box Score
Alias gave a great report below. That's as detailed as anything I've read. Thanks for that.

The good:
1) JD had a monster game... fell one blocked shot short of a triple-double (25/11/9). I believe the great Roy Rogers is the only player in Alabama history to do that (and I believe he did it twice).
2) Held USM to 31% from the field and outrebounded them 40-31.
3) Justin Tubbs... did we find our outside threat?

The bad:
1) Turnovers- 18 is way too much.
2) Let USM back in the game late. We got to finish off teams.

Overall a sloppy game played by both, but a good win for the team. Someone tell me why Hollinger played 37 minutes to Torrance's 10. Maybe I missed an injury or something.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Plucking Golden Eagles!

Okay, so it's not much of a banner line, but I am tired and have a bad cold. Maybe I'll do better next time.

These were the best seats I've ever had at a basketball game. We were just left of mid-court sitting five rows behind Chris Stewart and Tom Roberts. I haven't had seats like this since my friends and I used to sit right behind the basket as students.

Unfortunately, I don't think Mrs. Alias will ever attend another game with me. That crowd was duller than a wet firecracker. Somebody had to let the officials know we had our eyes on them. There were not very many real Bama Basketball fans in that crowd and there certainly was no Marks Madness presence. I did my duty as a fan. Now I will have to pay my penance as a husband. Oh well!

Perhaps the most obvious thing I can say is that this team simply is not the same without Ronald Steele. Hollinger is more than capable, but he is not Ron Steele.
Perhaps the best thing I can say about this game is that this team can win without Ron Steele.

If Bama played defense like Southern Miss and with the same intensity, they would be unstoppable. Hollinger had hands in his face and on his belly all night. He and the other guards were pushed, shoved and grabbed up and down the court all night. The team committed way too many turnovers, but I don't think the guards were responsible for many of them. Hollinger will not often be defended more tightly or physically than he was tonight, and he still found a way to get the ball underneath the basket where CMG repeatedly told the team he wanted to go.

Gee and Hendrix both have a bad habit of putting the ball on the floor too close to the basket. That leads to way too many turnovers. Hopefully with more playing time they will develop the sort of presence and feel Davidson now has. They don't have it yet. They still were very productive offensively and should continue to improve. Given all the hacking and slapping the officials allowed both teams to commit tonight, the big men got a good deal of experience against physical defense.

Tubbs still had his shot. I think he was 2 of 3 outside. That was excellent news. I think Gee was 2 for 4 or 5 outside the arc, but I easily could be mistaken. I keep waiting for the officials statistics to be posted and will defer to them when they are available.

Torrence looked a bit out of sync tonight. He has looked much sharper in other games. Both Torrence and Hollinger forgot to play defense with their feet from time to time. Tubbs did not. The more I see of all these kids the more I want to see more Tubbs.

The key to this game was Davidson. USM simply did not have an answer for him. He was quicker, moved better with the ball, and shot the short jumper better than any of the USM inside players. He fouled out one defender and hung 3 or 4 fouls on each of the other two guys who tried to guard him. He was more effective down low than Hendrix or Gee because he has an 8-12 foot shot that was dropping tonight and defending that forced his opponents to give up moves toward the basket by JD. When JD took the ball to the hoop tonight, Bama won.

Bama defended credibly against a good shooting team. I really liked Riley's defense, especially in the second half. Some of the younger players have trouble getting back out to guard the three after offering double team help near the basket, but they are doing better all the time. Davidson and Hendrix generally were allowed some body bumps while they swatted away almost everything under the basket.

All things considered, it was a good win in a beautiful arena before a large, neutral crowd. The young kids keep getting better. We need to see more Tubbs. If Steele ever gets well, we will be very good. We are pretty good without him, but Steele is the difference between a good Bama team and one that goes to the Final Four.

I continue to believe this team will be fun to watch all year.

Roll Tide!

Friday, December 15, 2006

Southern Miss stats pack


All you ever wanted to know statistically about the undefeated Golden Eagles from Hattiesburg.
USM stats pack

A couple of things about them you might not know:
1) They've played a cupcake schedule. They haven't been tested. Even Dukie V commented on this.
2) Larry Eustachy is their HC. You know him from Iowa State as the guy that lost as a 2 seed in the 1st round to Hampton. You also know him from his post game parties at rival school's fraternities and student apartments. I think he's turned his life around so good luck to him after this game.

Not a whole lot you can pull from their stats being the weak schedule they've played.

Almost 50% FG, 35% 3pt FG, 61% FT (AUful), and their rebound margin is +15.4 per game.

I have not seen them play (and unless you're an avid USM fan you probably haven't either)... all I could guess is Wise is their best player and biggest threat beyond the arc (which we still have problems defending under CMG). Hendrix should have his way inside as I don't think Dotson can cover him. FEED THE BALL INSIDE TO JD AND RH!!!

Prediction... Alabama in a close one by 7. TV coverage on CSS at 8:30PM EST (7:30PM CST)

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Looking Toward Southern Miss


I had a few extra minutes in my day so I thought I might try to learn something from Bama's performance statistics so far this year from the rolltide.com site
Stats.

First, our three point shooting numbers are not where they need to be. We attempt about 22% fewer threes than our opponents (164-212), but we have made almost the same number (61-59). We've shot threes at 32% and held opponents to 28%, but much of that was against inferior competition. Iowa and Xavier both shot at 23% while Bama it at 21% and 26% against them, respectively. Notre Dame was the killer. They went 12 for 28 (or 43%) outside the arc, while Bama shot a respectable 9 for 24. I'd say it's too early to draw any conclusions from those numbers.

What does look like good news is that Riley seems to have found his shot. He shot pretty well in the first two games but was an abysmal 1 for 11 against Xavier and Iowa. (Maybe he enjoyed the beach too much?) Against Notre Dame he went 2-6 outside the arc and shot 54% over all.

Torrance and Hollinger have not been much help here. Torrance is shooting at 18% outside the arc. Hollinger is hitting one-third of his threes, but he's only shot 20 of them. Geeks three point numbers are similar to Hollinger's (9 of 23).

Some people thing Tubbs is the answer, but he's only had the one good game. Tubbs did play solid defense, so perhaps he can be a good first replacement for Riley while Hollinger and Torrance trade time at the point. (I think Torrance is Steele's heir apparent, but he's not in condition yet and he is not yet playing at the level that will be required to edge out Hollinger.)

The numbers that jump off the page are turnovers and free throws. We have committed an appalling 117 turnovers for a margin of -1.3. I know we are playing a lot of youth, but with all the true ball handling guards and big men with gifted hands, those numbers are way too high.

Our team free throw shooting is bad at 65%. Inside those numbers, Gee is at 60% (33 of 55) and Hendrix is at 67% (25 of 37). Given the numbers of minutes they play and the number of times they both will be fouled, if they do not improve those numbers we will lose several games we should win at the line alone.

A good friend of mine likes to say, "Whatever you measure improves." I hope he's right because those FT numbers really need to improve.

I guess that's enough whining for one afternoon. Hopefully we will pad all those numbers a bit against USM and Steele will be ready to play before Oklahoma.

P.S. Sorry for any misspelled words. I cannot seem to make the spell checker on this site work.

Davidson cleared by NCAA to rejoin team

"We have received official word that Jermareo has been cleared to play and is eligible," Alabama coach Mark Gottfried said in a statement. "I think our compliance staff here at Alabama did a great job working with the Southeastern Conference in getting it done in such a timely manner.

"We're excited that's behind us. I know Jermareo is eager to get on with it."


Davidson cleared

Good news indeed.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Around the world of college hoops... things you might not know

Since we've got a week between games I figured I'd throw in some things you did not know

Syracuse will not leave the state of New York for a game until January 7th when they go on the road to Marquette.

SEC Out of Conference record vs the AP top 25 (AP top 25 as of 12-12): 2-13
Alabama: 0-1 (Xavier will be back in the top 25 soon)
Arkansas: 0-0 (biggest win vs WVU)
LSU: 1-1 (biggest win vs Texas A&M, L to Wichita St)
Auburn: 0-3 (played Pitt and Oklahoma State tough)
Ole Miss: 0-2 (couldn't hang with UConn or Memphis)
Mississippi State: 0-0 (super cupcake schedule)
Florida: 0-1 (Kansas OT loss)
Kentucky: 0-3 (UCLA, Memphis, UNC)
Tennessee: 1-2 (Ls to UNC and Butler, W over Memphis)
Vanderbilt: 0-0 (L to G'town and W over Ga Tech... both should be back in the top 25)
South Carolina: 0-0 (big win over the real USC in So Cal)
Georgia: 0-0 (big win at Wake Forest)

Gonzaga has the nation's longest home court winning streak at 45 games. Granted most of their home games are against a bunch of cupcakes. BTW- they don't seem to be missing a step from Adam "Pornstache" Morrison's departure to the NBA.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Simple Thoughts about State

Alabama State thoughts, that is. Or the Alabama State game, anyway.

As noted by Jet, neither Steele nor Davidson played. Steele's absence puzzles me, because every person I know who is somewhat close to the program says that the earlier layoff made his condition worse. I am not a doctor, I've never played one on tv, and I did not stay in a Holiday Inn Express last night, but I suspect Steele will not be back to 100% at any time during the present season. If that happens, I sure hope it does not impact his professional prospects. A healthy Steele is a young man who probably should skip his senior season for the NBA goldmine. Let's hope everything works out best for him.

The game was such a joy to watch, I'd better hit the few negatives I think I noticed before moving on.

Everyone knows I am the founding member of the Brandon Hollinger fan club, but I believe Torrence is the point guard of the future. The mechanics on Torrence's set shot worry me, but he is tall, strong, and can both pass and shoot layups equally well with either hand. Unfortunately, he is not in good enough condition to play 30 minutes per game and he has not yet developed the feel he needs for when to pass and when to drive. Once he overcomes those two problems, I believe he will be an excellent point guard for us. But as of last night, he was not quite ready to assume Steele's role.

Not to pick on Torrence, but like half the team he continues to try to play defense with his hands. I think the problem these kids have is that they were so much better physically than the kids they played against in high school that they never really had to practice the fundamentals in order to excel. Please don't think I am negative on Torrence. He has more than overcome my former reservations about him and I continue to believe he is our long-term solution at the point once Steele lives. He just is not quite where Hollinger was fundamentally or condition-wise at this time last year. (Then again, Otis Hughely might be the most demanding high school coach in Alabama so that is not surprising. I wish we could sign more kids from his program.)

The other negative was not a surprise. Many of us had hoped Cloyd would pressure Riley for playing time as our outside threat. He does have wonderful tools, but Cloyd simply is not ready to be counted on yet. It's not that Cloyd is not good. It's just that some of us had been lead to believe that he might make an immediate impact. He still might do that before the season is over, but I just do not think he is ready yet.

Now to the good. First, Riley. Riley's defense is good and improving. That's good because we need him to be better than he is right now. He's also found his shot and he has some nice moves toward the basket. Riley is permanently entrenched in that wing spot. Assuming a healthy Steele, Riley fills the one gap that existed on last year's team. He appears to be everything we were expecting.

My Man Hollinger played pretty well at the point. Neither he nor Torrence committed a turnover, but they needed some help from their teammates who saved a couple of miscues by each of them. Hollinger shot a little better last night, but the bread and butter of the offense for about a ten minute stretch was a nifty move where Hollinger moved toward the basket then passed the ball around his defender to Hendrix who was in position to move straight to the hoop for a lay in. Hollinger was more than passable at the point last night.

Hendrix had a monster game and did not commit the silly fouls that have gotten him into trouble in other games. Jemison is more than just a physical specimen. He plays sound defense and rebounded well. Coleman did not have as much competition last night as he has in other games, but he played well. He scored some needed points and grabbed 9 rebounds. Coleman is progressing well. If he improves like Davis and Davidson did between his first and second years of playing, we will not miss Davidson too much next year.

Gee continues to be a joy to watch, but I cringe every time I see him dribble in traffic. (Okay, pretty much the same can be said for half the team. But given the magnitude of Gee's strengths his weakness seems pretty spectacular.) That's not much of a down side, and there's not another player anywhere I'd swap Gee for. Kudos to CMG and the staff for landing that prodigy.

Everybody but TI's DJCEsq was surprised by Justin Tubbs' coming out party last night. DJC told me before the game he was hoping we'd see more of Tubbs because "he's looked really good every time he's playd." Not only did Tubbs light it up from outside, but he played defense with his feet the entire time he was on the court and had quicker hands than Hollinger. At one point on defense he reminded me of a thin, althetic Anthony Murray with a good haircut. Let's hope last night's performance will prove to be the rule, not the exception.

Last night was much more than an easy win against a less than good opponent. We played much better last night than we did against this same team in Montgomery two years ago. Not only did the puppies on the bench get to play, but most of them played well and played well together. I think it is important that CMG become comfortable playing these younger kids, especially if Steele's problems linger. It also would be very nice to have lots of bodies to throw at people in a press, which they played pretty well last night for several possessions.

See you all Saturday in Mobile!

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Crimson Tide coast to easy win...


... about freakin' time I say. Note- we played without Ronald Steele and Jermareo Davidson.

Steele missed the game with tendinitis in his right knee and a sprained left ankle after trying to go in warmups. Coach Mark Gottfried announced before the game that Davidson, a senior center, had withdrawn from the fall semester after missing some classes following the death of his girlfriend in a November car accident. His brother is in the hospital with an unrelated injury.

Davidson is expected to be eligible for next Saturday's game against Southern Mississippi once final exams are over.

"With the SEC and the NCAA, there's a process where you can withdraw and have your semester wiped out and not get penalized when there's a death or tragedy," Gottfried said. "We're just trying our best to make sure we look out for him."


Yahoo game summary

Box score

The good:
Everyone got to play. I think some members of Mark's Madness got some PT in the last few minutes. (g)
Gee was the only one to log more than 30 minutes. Oh yeah, Steele got rest.
68% from the field is ok... won't lose many doing that.
Hendrix- he picked up the slack big time (34 points/10 boards).
Hollinger and Torrence... zero TOs toggling at the point.

The bad:
Too many turnovers (I have to bitch about something).

Overall, this is what the doctor ordered after a tough loss in South Bend.

Alabama comes home to battle state rival Alabama State (stats pack)



Ok, they're not really a rival but it sounded good. The Hornets are coming off winning 2 of their last 4 with big wins over Tuskegee and the ever impressive Troy University. This should be a barnburner.
Alabama State stats pack

I'm not going to sugarcoat this... they stink. Here's a glimpse of how bad they are.
Scoring margin: -17.3
PPG: 56.5
FG: 32%
3pt FG: 33% (this isn't bad, but it's sad they shoot better beyond the arc)
Rebound margin: -13.5

If we don't beat them like we stole something I'll be disappointed. This game might in some small way take some of the pain from the Bama nation with the 2nd half tailkicking to Notre Dame and Rich Rodriguez telling our AD that life is better in West Virginia.

Prediction... Crimson Tide by 30 and Steele gets much needed rest.
Internet broadcast on yahoo at 7:30PM EST (6:30PM CST).

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Disappointment At The Dame

An uninspired Alabama team refused to play defense for most of the game and fell to a hot three-point shooting Notre Dame. I kept screaming at my television to try to out quick that team, but that was not what CMG had in mind. Gottfried finally put in the press with about three minutes to go, but our kids make way too many mental errors to win this game.

Bama seems to have fallen into a pattern. They play lights out offense for about 10 or 15 minutes, but then the fail to adjust when the defense adjusts to stop what they are doing. CMG needs to get this young team's attention. Davidson needs to assert his leadership (and stop shooting those long shots with time left on the clock) until Ron Steele can rehabilitate his knee.

The most consistent thing about Bama's defense this year has been its inconsistency. I never thought I would miss Jean Felix, but there were at least two guys we could have put him on tonight. Riley is expected to become a lock-down defender. He'd better adjust quickly because we are going to need him soon. Gee needs to learn not to make silly fouls and (silly dribbling turnovers). If he can, he can defend too.

One other person who has not been mentioned much is Torrence. He has the speed and tools to play defense. If he can be taught to play with his feet all the time, perhaps he can fill that void. Unfortunately, no one answered the defensive call tonight. I hope Torrence decides to be that player.

The zebras did not do us any favors in this game. I will be interested to hear what the Marks Madness kids who made the trip have to say about their on-site experience. The officiating was not the difference in the game, but they didn't help. With the game on the line and Bama down by only three points, Riley was mauled underneath the basket with no call. Much the same thing happened on our next possession.

On area where CMG and Coach Asbury need to continue to improve is to help our big men stay focused in physical games. They made great strides in that area last year, but our big men still don't exhibit the "feel" for the ebb and flow as the game officiating changes. I certainly don't know how to teach that. Heck, I usually am not even aware of it until the flow has moved back in the other direction. But the best teams seem to have this.

While I'm complaining, there is no way a good team gives up 99 points to Notre Dame. The kids in Crimson did not play defense and they paid a huge price. After being humiliated before a national television audience, we will see whether CMG can do what all good coaches do and turn this apparent negative into a positive.

There was no shame in losing to Notre Dame on their home court tonight. But losing by a dozen points or more and giving up 99 points should tell our kids that they need to dig really deep and to stay focused on defense if they are going to reach their goals for the year. I hope their goals are at least as high as my expectations for them. I am betting on CMG and our experienced leadership to help turn this around so we don't play so poorly on defense again this year. Hopefully by February we will be saying this was a "good" game to lose in December because our kids needed a wakeup call.

Time will tell.

Roll Tide!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Notre Dame stats pack and more


Obviously, this our first true road test. Should be a back and forth game.
Notre Dame stats pack

Their lone loss to Butler doesn't look so bad right now. The good news is they struggled to be Lehigh at home, but that could've been an off-game for them.

Our D will have to be stronger than it has been during our tuneup week... Notre Dame shoots 51% from the field, 37% from beyond the arc, they get to the free throw line a bunch (163 times in 7 games), and hit 73% of their FTs.

Mike Brey has done a solid job in South Bend... and he did a great job at Delaware before this gig. They are well coached and play solid fundamental ball. We need to bring at least our B+ game to escape with a win.

As for individual talent... we'll need to contain Rob Kurz (I assume Hendrix gets the task of covering him) inside and cover Colin Falls and Russell Carter from the perimeter. They don't have a player taller than 6'9" on the roster so we should be able to punish them inside, but they do play 9 so they'll have fouls to give (read- we must hit FTs).

The game is on ESPN at 9PM EST tomorrow night (12/7). I assume it'll be in HD.

Prediction- Alabama wins by 4 in South Bend behind a monster game by Davidson (something like 20 points, 12 boards and 5 blocks).

Monday, December 04, 2006

New polls out... Alabama #4 in AP and #5 in Coaches

I'm too lazy to link, but you can find the rankings on espn.com or whatever sports website you like to use.

It looks like Notre Dame might be better than most thought. They won at Maryland yesterday (12/4) impressively. Their only loss was to Butler in the preseason NIT which is not looking so bad after all (Butler won the preseason NIT). We better be on our game to win.

With the Big East lookng to be somewhat down this year, it might be Notre Dame's chance to shine. I'll write up more about the Irish and their coach later this week.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Tennessee State Observations

Box Score

The first thing that surprised me was that Ron Steele not only played but started the game. I thought the coaches might want to rest his knee one more game, but with 5 days before Notre Dame perhaps he needed to play with the team. The second surprise was that Coleman was the first big man off the bench today instead of Jemison, who seemed to have passed him in the rotation. Those are just two more reasons why CMG coaches our team and I do not. :-)

Hendrix and Gee both got into early foul trouble. Each of them bought one early foul that should not have been called, but Hendrix should know better than to keep lowering his shoulder when the officials already have called a charge on him. Gee committed an unnecessary foul trying to get back a ball he had lost in traffic. With continued coaching they can learn not to make those types of mistakes. At least they were hustle type mistakes and were made at full speed.

Another unpleasant thing about this game was the way the team let TSU back into the game after having earned a 24 point lead. Much of that lead was lost with Gee and Hendrix on the bench (put there by their own foul troubles) and with Hollinger at the point, but even with the starters back in they took several possessions to reassert themselves.

One other negative was how our ball handlers lost the ball from behind on several possessions. Both the forwards and point guards showed problems here, but these too are correctable mistakes. We also were beat out on the boards. As JD said in his post-game interview, "Coach is going to be pretty mad."

To begin the plus side, TSU was a pretty good team and had two kids who could play for almost any team in the country. They were well coached and played hard and together as a team the entire game. This was a solid win against decent competition.

Another huge plus is that Riley found his shot (four of six outside the arc) and was the team's second leading scorer. An equally impressive plus was the flow of the offense in the first half. The High post was working almost to perfection, Davidson had two assists and Hendrix five. The coaches used the time outs effectively in the first half and set up back door cut plays to Gee, Hollinger, Riley and Torrence. Riley had another set up, but bobbled the ball allowing the defense to force him to alter his shot.

TSU played a tough man-to-man defense in the second half that slowed down the offense, but they played a lot of zone in the first half. The ball movement against that zone was excellent. I noticed Riley running the baseline against that zone the way Kentucky used to do in the late seventies with Chuck perturbed.

Not many of JD's outside shots fell, but enough of them did to help make the high post work. JD also faked his shot from outside several times (something I've wondered why our team does not do more often) to set up his drive or dish. He even made one clever outside play when his jumper would have been blocked so he dribbled the ball on his way down to avoid a walking call.

The defense was more than credible. We did give up some threes to their player with the hot hand, but several of those shots were open because our guards and forwards were giving trapping help. We moved quickly to guard the shooter but got there a half step late several times. Again, this is something that can improve with time.

Coleman's play was improved. He does not move as quickly as Davidson, but he is larger, provides a big body inside, and seems to body up well to afford him rebounding opportunities. It was good to see Coleman play well enough to spell Hendrix, but that also kept me from seeing much of Jemison.

Torrence's father told me last week that the coaches intend to play him at the point, the two guard and the small forward. He has the body and the talent to play all three positions, but they played Hollinger at the point today. They also replaced Riley with Hollinger the last few minutes, presumably to help control the ball and to provide a reliable free throw shooter. I am beginning to believe that Torrence will start at the point after Steele leaves, because of his size, his passing ability, and his ability to slash toward the basket and lay the ball in with either hand. It will be fun to watch Riley and Hollinger battle for playing time at the point.

For the most part I think the teams mistakes and break downs today are attributable primarily to their youth. Remember we play only one senior and two juniors, one of whom is a juco transfer. All but two of our "veterans" are true sophomores. Any team that young will be prone to make mistakes. Steele's and Davidson's leadership will be crucial to keeping the youngest kids under control. Hendrix and Gee need to contribute by not getting into silly foul trouble.

I don't want his fouls to be the only thing I type about Hendrix. For the most part he played a solid game. He is a force on the boards, has a nice move to the basket with the ball in his hands, and maintains an incredible eye for the open man when he gets cut off or doubled near the basket.

I'd say this was a very positive outing. The team won a hard-fought game that will give the coaches a number of things they can correct. If CMG does not freeze out his bench once SEC play starts, we should have the talent and depth we need to go a long way.

After having seen two games live and two on television, I am even more excited about this team than I was before the season started. We are going to lose some games, but this team will be a whole lot of fun to watch, especially within the friendly confines of Coleman Coliseum.

Roll Tide, brothers, Roll Tide!

Friday, December 01, 2006

Tennessee State stats pack


The last of 3 tune ups to Notre Dame.
TSU Tigers stats pack

This really should be a scrimmage game. TSU is 2-2, but they're bad from the field (35%), from beyond the arc (24%), turn the ball over like it's going out of style (19 per game), and can't hit free throws worth a damn (56%).

Matthews and Weaver seem to be their scorers as they are the only ones averaging double digits. This game should be decided by halftime... I hope.

I say Alabama by 28.

Gametime is 3:30PM EST (2:30PM CST) on ACN and the usual Yahoo audio webcast.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Uninspired win over the Warhawks


Uninspired is being kind as the Crimson Tide pull away at the 10 minute mark to beat Louisiana Monroe 75-61. Mykal Riley and Alonzo Gee put up 22 points for the closer than expected win over a pretty bad Warhawks squad. Davidson had an AUful shooting night going 3-15 from the field.
Box Score

I tuned in late in the 1st half and figured Louisiana Monroe must've been shooting lights out to keep it close. I was wrong... they looked like crap as well.

The good:
Held the Warhawks to 34% from the field and 29% from beyond the arc.
Rebounded (47-28) and shot free throws well (19-24).
Hendrix was solid again with 18/12... another double double. Davidson and Gee also had double-doubles

The bad:
JD, Riley, and Gee played 35 minutes.
The Warhawks played like crap and we still struggled with them.
Guard play was anemic.

Overall, a crappy outing. Oh well, at least we won and our star players don't have mono.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Louisiana Monroe stats pack


They should be another sacrifical lamb. I'd like to see us play 14 again.
Warhawks stats pack

This is their 2nd SEC foe... LSU demolished them. Actually they've been steamrolled by no less than 28 on the road so far. From the stats they're bad from the field (39%), but good from the line (78%). The Warhawks like the 3 ball so we'll have to cover beyond the arc.

I'm not sure if this is right, but it looks like they start 3 guards so pound it inside with JD and RH. We should win going away. I say Alabama by 34..

Gametime is 8PM EST (7PM CST) on ACN. Usual yahoo link for audio webcast.

Who knew?

Side note- I'm watching Michigan-NC State... the Wolfpack might be better than I thought... or Michigan could be pretty bad.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Crimson Tide demolish Texas Southern 74-44

Box Score
Davidson had a monster game with 16 points, 10 boards, 8 rejections and 3 pick pockets. Hendrix added 15 points and 12 boards as Alabama played fans in the final 4 minutes (not really). Really, I believe everyone that suited up to play got some PT.

The good:
Dominated the boards (22-11 margin)
Free throw shooting (73%)
Riley was the only one to play 30+ minutes
Opponent FG and 3point shooting (29% each)

The bad:
FG and 3 point shooting (39% and 21%)
Turnovers (14)

It was a dominant performance in spite of our shooting woes. I figure with Steele in the lineup our turnovers are cut by 5.

Forgot to add this:
With LSU, North Carolina, Florida, Duke, and Wisconsin losing this week look for us to be in the top 5 (or 6th at worst).
Pitt should be 1 followed by UCLA, Ohio State, Florida, and then us. For giggles the rest of the top 10 IMO will be North Carolina, Butler, A&M, Kansas, and LSU.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Texas Southern stats pack

Everything points to this being a scrimmage where the fans gets to suit up in the last 5 minutes.
Stats pack

They've lost by double digits on the road to everyone... 2-4 overall. TSU is not good from the field (40%), from the line (67%), from beyond the arc (22%), and are turnover prone (119 in 6 games... roughly 20 per game).

I hope there's a nice crowd to welcome the team home after winning the Paradise Jam. This should be the 1st of 3 consecutive scrimmage games before the Tide goes to South Bend for their first road test.

The game is Saturday at 7PM EST on ACN (Crimson Tide Network). The yahoo audio link is here. Note this is a premium site... roughly $5/month to listen.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

High School News

Just a touch on Alabama high school current events....

LeFlore (Mobile) is debuting in USAToday's Super 25 at #15 returning 5 starters with Jr F Nick Williams and G Joshua Wesley. Alias may want to go check these guys out to see if there is another Brandon Hollinger in-the-rough...

Also, the SportsMed Shoootout will be here in Huntsville featuring Bama signee Rico Pickett playing for Decatur. Also participating in this tourney is Erwin High School, featuring Sophomore phenom DeMarcus Cousins, rated as one of the top sophomores in the country. Defending 3A champ Madison Academy will be there along with defending Mississippi 5A champ Murrah, which is the school of ex-Bama great Mo Williams.

The bracket can be viewed here SportsMED Shootout

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Tide beat Musketeers to win Paradise Jam

Led by double-doubles by Davidson and Riley the Tide pull away late to win 73-65.
Box Score

The turning point in the game IMO was CMG going to a 2-3 zone when Xavier got hot from the field. That shut down their outside shooting and helped the Tide come back from 6 down to take control of the game.

Riley provided a spark off the bench... his 3 point shooting was off, but overall he put up 13 points and 10 boards. Steele was off, but that's ok. Gee turned it on in the 2nd half, Hendrix owned the inside, and Davidson had another solid game (although I think he's too enamored with shooting the 15ft jumper).

The good:
Holding Xavier to 32% from the field and 23% from beyond the arc.
Shutting down Burrell.
Only 11 turnovers.

The bad:
Free throw shooting: 7-15.
Rebounding: we out rebounded them, but not by much. Xavier had 11 offensive boards.

Overall a good effort against a very good team. It's nice to have a tournament win under our belts.

Side note- the guy that did the postgame interview was AUful. It's been 11 years since I graduated with a film degree, yet I could've done better than that trainwreck. Oh well, I guess the guy was having fun.

BTW- thanks to Hville and steve dave for posting the channels for those "other" cable and satellite providers.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Xavier stats pack

The one thing that stuck out for me was they're a bad free throw shooting squad.
Xavier stats pack

The Musketeers (BTW- a cool team name) have had scares against VCU and of course Villanova. I expect this to be a back and forth game, but in the end we'll out "inside game" them and win by 5. When's the last time we won a tournament? I can't think of one off the top of my head under CMG.

The matchup of Steele and Burrell should be a good one tonight.

According to my directv guide the game is scheduled for 8:30PM EST on channel 631 (Fox Sports South).

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Crimson Tide advance to finals of Paradise Jam

Led by Alonzo Gee we take care of Iowa in the 2nd half, pulling away and winning 72-60.
Box Score

It was nice to see many contribute... Davidson had a real nice overall game rebounding, scoring, and altering shots, Steele answered every Iowa mini-run with clutch 3s, Gee with his amazing dunks and overall energy, and Hendrix scoring at will in the paint and picking up some 'garbage' buckets.

It looks like we'll play 9 this year... which is awesome. We won't have tired players down the stretch (hopefully).

My only minor gripe... rebounding. Iowa got a lot of 2nd chance shots off long misses. The good news is we held Iowa to 38% from the field.

Iowa looks to be a team that might surprise in the Big 11. Smith doesn't play like a freshman and Haluska can't be as bad as he's been shooting in the tourney. They might finish 4th in the Big 11.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Iowa stats pack

Iowa is 2-0 with wins over The Citadel and Toledo (Paradise Jam).
Iowa stats so far

To be honest I haven't seen Iowa play yet so I can't break this one down. They seem turnover prone. I know they lost a lot from last year and this is supposed to be a rebuilding year for them.

Prediction- Alabama by 12 with JD, Alabama by 5 without.

Gametime is 6PM EST Sunday evening. According to my directv programming it's on Channel 631.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Paradise Jam Webcast/MTSU stats pack

Paradise Jam Webcast
Unfortunately I won't be able to watch as I'll be on the road working.

AS for MTSU... here's their "stats pack"
MTSU so far

They got demolished by the Vols, but evened their record against the great Cumberland U. All signs point to 'mudhole' tomorrow afternoon. Tide should win by 20. Some of the Mark's Madness students might get some PT tomorrow :)

Monday, November 13, 2006

Preseason bracketology

Joe Lunardi has us in New Orleans as a 2 seed. That's the only way I'd ever go back to that city.
Bracketology

North Carolina is the projected 1 in the South. Kansas, Florida, and UCLA round out the other projected 1s. Arizona, LSU, and Pitt are the other projected 2s.

3 SEC teams projected in the top 8... who knew?

Jermareo Davidson in car crash

From what I read it happenned in Greensboro, GA. Brandy Murphy died in the 1 car crash. Davidson escaped without injury. Sad news.

tragic crash in GA

Davidson probably won't play in the Paradise Jam... which is more than understandable. Best wishes to the family of Brandy Murphy and JD.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Jackson State Thoughts

Sorry to be so late getting back, but I had to wait until I thought the football game was out of reach. Kudos to Coach Shula and the kids for a well planned and played game. Now to Jax State.

All the returning starters played up to my expectations and then some. Davidson has continued to improve ever since his arrival. Hendrix has lost his baby fat and will continue to improve under Coach Asbury's tutelage. One real high point of the game, with a 30 point lead in the first half both Hendrix and Davidson were on the floor chasing an errant rebound. The effort was evident from the beginning.

Steele was Steele. I believe he sat on the bench for about 3 consecutive minutes in the first half. I don't think that's happened since Jonus left. Great moves on both counts! (vbg)

Gee picked up where he left off last year except that he was on fire from outside the arc in the first few minutes of the game. He did continue his bad habit of picking up silly fouls, even in a loosely called game. Davidson, on the other hand did not. He was all focus all the time.

Finally Hollinger! What can I say about My Man Hollinger? Next to Steele I think Hollinger might be the most important component on this team. His effort, desire, heart, determination and consistency might well be what is pushing all the other perimeter players to perform consistently at a high level. If you are't playing all out on both ends of the court, we can put Hollinger in your place and not worry about a thing. I think the official stats confirm my counts that he had THREE REBOUNDS, a BLOCK and a steal. He also had several "saves" where he averted his teammates' sure turnovers by making heads up plays. Oh yeah, he was 1 for 1 from the field for three points, even though the Marks Madness kids begged him to shoot several times. His eagle eye pulled in defenders and that helped lead to his seven assists.

The most immeiately noticed new arrival was Riley, whom I suspect will be the first off the bench all year. (Yes, Hollinger stays in the starting lineup because he will not surrender it to anyone!) If Riley hits his first shot, he likely will hit 80-90% from the field. He also had some nice moves near the basket for a thin man and had a couple of very nice dishes, but I don't think either of those shots went in. His defense was sound and likely will improve with time.

I think Torrence was the next man off the bench. He only tried one three, using his low-launching shot. It was a dud, but almost everything else he did was pretty. I noticed in high school that Torrence lowers his shoulder, Michael Ansley style, when he wants to drive to the basket. Unlike Ansely, Torrence can drive, shoot and dish with either hand. He is relunctant to give up the ball on his drive (probably because he has confidence he can float it in with either hand - which he did last night), but he made several crisp passes using either hand last night. He is a keeper. He got lost a few times on defense. I expected that, but I'm not sure it was for lack of effort. I suspect he is being groomed to take Ron's place next year.

I think Jemison is the next most important new arrival because his body will allow him to help with banging near the basket and his shot looked sound. This was a very pleasant surprise for me.

Coleman looked more than passable in his backup role. I think he needs a lot of playing time so he can grow into JD's replacement last year. He has filled out and looked strong, but he does not look smooth like Davis and Davidson did their second years. Then again, Coleman is in his first playing year. I believe he will improve under coach Asbury's watchful eye as our other big men have. He will be good.

Tubbs looked good when he was in. The students were right about Cloyd. He has the tools but is not up to the same level of play as the other true freshmen. He is not our immediate answer, but he looks like he could be a real contributor.

This is a team that needs some work and they were not playing against a good team last night, but I was very pleased. Last night's team looked much better than the one I saw play against Spring Hill College last year or against ASU the year before that.

In short, nothing I saw last night has done anything to diminish my unbridled optimism about this year's team. I am even more excited now than I was before I saw them. What a wonderful difference that is!

RTMF!!!!!!!!

Thoughts on Jackson State "scrimmage"

If someone would've told me CMG would play 14 in a game I'd make a call to Bryce and have them committed. 9 Players logged more than 10 minutes and our Ironman Steele only played 23 minutes. Awesome! BTW- we totally smacked around Jackson State 96-65

Box score of game

The only minor gripes I have are free throw shooting and rebounding. We were outrebounded, but that's partially due to them taking long shots and getting the long rebound and them shooting roughly 30% from the field. Free throws... well Coleman missed 5 of the 12 so that's not that big of a deal.

It's early, but we might've found another outside threat in Riley. That'll open up things for JD, RH, and AG if he keeps it up.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Recruiting news

Neat Story on Knox

I found a link to this story on another blog:

Knox

I guess our recruiting is over for the year now.

I will try to post a report Saturday after returning from tonight's game. I'm sure there will be plenty of other reports here before mine, but I am so excited about basketball finally starting that I won't be able to contain myself.

RTMF!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Jackson State "stats pack"

Not really as it'll be their first regular season game. The best I can do is post last year's schedule and results.

Trey Johnson and some other guys
They bring back 6 from their 15-17 campaign a year ago, including the preseason SWAC player of the year Trey Johnson. Johnson is also named preseason mid-major player of the year according to collegeinsider.com.

Looking at last year's stats, he's the guy to cover as he lead Jackson State in scoring in 28 of 32 games. I'm guessing Gee gets the nod guarding him this Friday.

Jackson State is the preseason favorite to win the SWAC.

Gametime is 8:30PM EST (7:30CST) on Friday Nov 10th.
Yahoo audio broadcast link is here.
Note- this is the Jackson State broadcast. I believe you can purchase the yahoo broadcast for Alabama on a monthly basis. In state fans (I'm not one of them) can probably find it on the radio.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Crimson Tide predictions for the season

It's not often I'm considered an optimist, but I believe this year is going to be special for Crimson Tide basketball fans. Wins and losses predicted below:

11/10 Jackson State 8:30 PM W
11/17 Middle Tennessee State W
11/18 Iowa W
11/19 Villanova/Xavier W
11/25 Texas Southern 7:00 PM W
11/28 Louisiana-Monroe 8:00 PM W
12/2 Tennessee State 3:30 PM W
12/7 at Notre Dame 9:00 PM W
12/9 Alabama State 7:00 PM W
12/16 at Southern Miss 8:30 PM W
12/20 at North Carolina State L
12/23 Coppin State 3:00 PM W
12/29 Lipscomb 8:00 PM W
01/1 Oklahoma 2:30 PM W
01/6 at Arkansas 2:05 PM L
01/9 No. 7 LSU 9:00 PM W
01/17 at Vanderbilt W
01/20 Georgia 1:30 PM W
01/23 at Auburn 9:00 PM W
01/27 Arkansas 3:00 PM W
01/31 at No. 7 LSU 9:00 PM W
02/3 South Carolina 3:00 PM W
02/7 Mississippi State 8:00 PM W
02/10 at Mississippi 5:00 PM W
02/14 at No. 1 Florida 8:00 PM L
02/17 No. 22 Kentucky 3:00 PM W
02/21 at No. 24 Tennessee 8:00 PM L
02/24 Auburn 5:00 PM W
02/28 Mississippi 8:00 PM W
03/4 at Mississippi State 2:00 PM W

That's 26-4... good enough for a top 2 seed. While I'd like to believe we'll go 30-0 I figure we'll slip up a few times on the road.

The Paradise Jam will test us early, but IMO we're much better than the rest of the field. Iowa will probably give us our toughest test there.

I picked a NCST upset... I figure we'll drop one on the road. I probably could've chosen Notre Dame as the upset. We'll win one of those.

As for SEC play... I penciled in 13-3 in conference. Flip-flop Tennesse and LSU on the road if you like... I say we win one of those and we finally get the Vandy curse off our backs.

I'll predict SEC and NCAA tournaments when they get closer. Tentatively, I say we make it to the SECT finals and the Final Four in Atlanta. I'll be there for both.

AP preseason poll released- Alabama #11

The Gators and Tar Heels are 1 and 2... LSU is 5. I think LSU is preseason overrated... ditto for UCLA (#6) and Arizona (#10).

The Gators were the runaway choice Monday in The Associated Press' preseason college basketball poll -- no surprise, since they have everyone back for a run at being the first repeat national champion since Duke in 1992.

Florida received 63 first-place votes and 1,788 points from the 72-member national media panel to easily outdistance North Carolina, which got the other nine No. 1 votes and 1,704 points.

"We appreciate and respect that people think this highly of our basketball team," Gators coach Billy Donovan said Monday. "That being said, this ranking has everything to do with what we were able to accomplish last year and nothing to do with this year. We're very honored to be the preseason No. 1, but at the same time, we fully realize we have a lot of work ahead of us."


Preseason AP poll

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Exhibition hoops- Bama 71-62 over Montevallo

I would've posted this yesterday if it wasn't for me watching the car wreck that is Alabama football. Thank goodness basketball season is right around the corner.

“Let me just open up and say that although Montevallo is a Division II basketball team, they are a very good basketball team. They are well-coached; extremely well-coached. And they’ve got two Division II All-Americans on their team. So when we scheduled Montevallo, we knew that we’d have our hands full,” said Alabama coach Mark Gottfried who played the game without his All-American, point guard Ronald Steele who sat out the game with tendonitis in his right knee. “Playing without Ron, in a way, was good for our team. It’s what we needed. So we learned we have a lot of areas where we’ve got to get better. I think was good for some of these young guys. People forget how young of a basketball team we are. It’s good for some of these young guys to get in those situations early, with the time and the score and how important a possession is at a certain point in the game. I feel like overall, there were some good things in the game tonight.”

Montevallo was able to keep the game fairly close during the first half, catching up and tying Alabama at 14-14 before the Tide went on a 13-0 run at the 11:33 mark to lead 27-14 before Montevallo broke the scoring streak. The Falcons ended their scoring drought after Montevallo’s Grant Urbanski hit a three point field goal at the 6:38 mark.


From Rolltide.com

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Another Alabama preview...

Final Projection: If any of the wings can step up, Alabama can make a deep run in March…or April. Steele, Davidson and Hendrix are solid, but experienced depth will become an issue. Ten of the 14 players on the roster are underclassmen and two of those four upperclassmen haven’t played a game for Alabama. The talent is there for a surprise, but so is the inexperience and questions for a huge disappointment. The truth, as usual, lies somewhere in between and that leaves us right around the top of the SEC West and a trip to the second weekend of the dance.

Click here to read the rest.

Nothing you haven't already read... I find this one to be tempering expectations.

If you want to read Tennessee's and Kentucky's preview from this site click here and look at #s 31 and 32.

Finally, if I get time I'll put up some "stats packs" of our opponent either the day before or the day of the game.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Why college hoops is the best of the major "amateur" sports

Why college hoops trumps college football

1) There is no mythical national champion. There's no debate about who the champ is. No one with 'credentials' gets left out in college basketball.

2) Rankings make more sense. Recent example- Auburn is ranked ahead of Arkansas in the polls despite getting blasted by the Hogs at home and both having one loss.

3) More teams have a realistic chance to win it all. Every year in college football there's about 10 teams that realistically have a chance to win the MNC. In college hoops you can expand that to 25 teams. Heck, Florida was preseason unranked last year and we know how that turned out. Try being preseason unranked in college football and have thoughts of a MNC.

4) Seats... all seats are chairbacks indoors. College football... not so much.

Why college hoops trumps college baseball

1) DING! The fingernails on the chalkboard sound of an aluminum bat. It's like playing wiffleball with newspaper stuffed in the wifflebat.

2) The best players 18-22 are already in the minor leagues. There are exceptions, but for the most part I'm right. That makes college baseball the equivalent of watching Class A baseball. Someone counter with the NBDL... I'll counter that with no one watches that anyways. (g)

Some of this is tongue in cheek, some of this is not... I'll let you decide.

Monday, October 30, 2006

USA Today/ESPN preseason ranking out

We're #12... about where I expected us to be. Of those ahead of us I believe Duke, UCLA, and Arizona are waaaay overrated.

We're #12

Damn me for saying this, but I think Tennessee is ranked a little low to start the year. I suspect they'll be top 15 to end the year. As long as we're better than the puke Orange I'll be happy. :)

Monday, October 23, 2006

SEC Men's Basketball Preseason Awards Announced

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- The Southeastern Conference unveiled its third annual men's basketball coaches preseason All-SEC first and second teams, Monday, to tip off another great season of SEC men's basketball.

Florida led all schools with four selections. Alabama's Ronald Steele, Florida's Joakim Noah, LSU's Glen Davis and Tennessee's Chris Lofton were unanimous selections. The coaches preseason All-SEC first and second teams consist of a minimum of eight players on each squad, voted on by the SEC Head Men's Basketball Coaches. No ties were broken and no predicted order of finish was made.


Steele and Davidson preseason 1st team

How can there be 8 first team players? Shouldn't it be 5?
There's one ommission IMO... Steven "Mango Salsa" Hill C Arkansas. I figure on D alone he's a 2nd teamer. I suspect he'll be in the running for defensive player of the year.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

For your reading pleasure...national links about Alabama

SI's 20 burning questions- Can anyone turn this Tide into a three-point machine?

I think Alabama is going into the season mildly underrated. The Tide have arguably the best guard in America in Ronald Steele, and the inside tandem of 6-foot-10 senior Jemareo Davidson and 6-8 sophomore Richard Hendrix is formidable. Still, last year 'Bama ranked ninth in the SEC in made threes per game (5.61) and was seventh in three-point percentage (34.5 percentage), and that inability to bomb from long range proved to be its undoing. Jean Felix, who made only 31.6 percent from behind the arc but went for a season-high 31 points in the NCAA first-round win over Marquette, is gone. There is no obvious replacement, and Alabama needs to find one soon
Click here for the rest.

Free preview of Alabama on espn
To step up, says the Mirriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary, is "to succeed in meeting a challenge [as by increased effort or improved performance]."
What better way to describe Alabama basketball in 2005-06?

Even coach Mark Gottfried might have feared the Crimson Tide's season was spiraling southward on the morning of Jan. 8, when he got word that his leading scorer and best low-post player, Chuck Davis, was lost for the rest of the year after blowing out his knee in a loss to Ole Miss the night before.

And if he didn't think Alabama was doomed just then, Gottfried might have come around to that line of thinking two weeks later, when guard Justin Jonus, one of the team's few remaining perimeter scoring threats, abruptly quit the team, leaving Gottfried with just seven scholarship players.

Not that Jonus was any world beater. But his departure, coupled with transfers and academic problems that cost the program four other players before the season began, left the Tide two foul outs and a twisted ankle away from finishing games with walk-ons. That's a scary proposition in any league, let alone the Southeastern Conference.

But at the height of Gottfried's despair, the Tide's luck began to change. Those foul outs and ankle injuries never happened. And several players, their roles drastically altered by the loss of Davis, began to succeed in meeting a challenge (as by increased effort or improved performance).


In other words, they stepped up.
More here.

From CBS Sportsline- A Gary Parrish writeup. You've been warned.
When the Crimson Tide do start playing games (Jackson State visits Nov. 10), what you'll find is that this is a team capable of being featured prominently on that One Shining Moment video next April. Who knows if they can win it all? But if you're compiling a list of teams with a legitimate shot to advance to the Final Four, this is one that must be on it.

Alabama has the best point guard in the nation in Ronald Steele, plus a dominant big man (Davidson) and bruising power forward (Hendrix). Granted, the Crimson Tide could use a proven shooter and some experienced depth, but when a team starts practice trying to establish its fourth-best player while identifying reserves, that's a team in good shape relative to most of the competition.

"I don't know if we're top 10 right now," Steele said, downplaying the expectations. "But we have a chance to be pretty good."

How good?

Consider the chant at the end of practice.

1-2-3 ... A-T-L!

Click here to read the rest.

Quick comments on the articles linked

SI- Gee and Steele will take the bulk of the 3s for us early on. Hopefully someone steps up as a 3rd beyond the arc threat.

ESPN- probably the best national preview of the team I've seen. It's a long read, but well worth it.

CBS- We really should've hyped up opening practice. I don't think the casual Alabama fan realizes how special this year could be. A little help from our SID (ha) and some marketing could've gone a long way to promoting the team. Otherwise a fair article from Parrish.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Gottfried reigns in hoop title hopes

I'm not sure why he wants to downplay it, but he is.... seems silly to me.

"The writers and editors who are picking our team high need to go on vacation for a while," he said.

Immediately, Gottfried starts jutting out fingers and listing the major obstacles for his club.

"The first thing, in this league you have Florida, who returns everyone from the national championship team. And in the SEC West, LSU returns three starters and the SEC player of the year (Glen Davis) from a conference championship team. I don't think there's any question the rest of the league is chasing those two."


Click here to read the rest of this.

More al.com links
2 starting spots open according to this piece. I disagree... Gee has secured a spot IMO. Let the battle begin for the final slot.

Another Steele article talking about him being an Iron Man and the expectations of this team.

Finally, practice begins Friday at 7:30PM CST (I have to put CST as I'm an EST dweller).

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Even more love for Steele- ESPN article

Why he'll make news: Steele is considered one of the top point guards in the country -- and also may be its most important. Talk to any coach in the SEC and they'll single out Steele as the point guard they'd love to have on their team. Steele did a little bit of everything for the Tide last season and his role will only expand with the departure of Chuck Davis. Steele's name should be known nationally by midseason. It's already a common name within basketball circles, but he'll be written about, talked about on air and surely shown in highlights as he leads the Tide toward an SEC West top-two finish.

The rest can be read here

Let's enjoy Steele this year as it'll be his last season in Crimson. He'll be a top 10 draft pick barring unforseen circumstances.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Scoring options

Posts on another board got me to thinking... who are our scoring options. My list from 4 to 1:

#4- Richard Hendrix
He's a cog in the middle, a rebounder, picks up the "garbage" points off misses, and plays decent D. However his offensive skills are limited as he hasn't shown a midrange jumper (yet).

#3- Alonzo Gee
The only reason he's #3 is the guys ahead of him have senority. He's a slasher, rebounds well, an outside threat. He'll be our go to guy next season.

#2 Ronald Steele
As of right now he's our best shooter, he penetrates, dishes, and even rebounds if the D is asleep at the wheel. He's the best at creating his own shot on the team, but he's #2 as his main job is still to distribute the ball. If he doesn't play 40MPG (and if he does it's borderline criminal) he'll be the go to guy down the stretch. He's going to make some NBA franchise really, really happy.

#1 Jamereo Davidson
2 years ago he was a shot blocker, last year he was a force in all aspects fo the game. This is going to sound bad, but Chuck Davis going down for the year gave him an opening to shine and he did in fact shine. JD has a nice low post game, medium range jumper, great defender, and is obviously a tremendous rebounder. Steele and Hollinger will feed hm early and often. My only concern is now that JD has the spotlight on him can he handle double teams and find the open man on the perimeter or slashing to the basket. I think the answer is yes. His stats might not look any better than last year, but I believe he'll be a more complete player.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

CBS Sportsline top PGs of 2006-07

Steele tops the list in this article.

1. Ronald Steele (Alabama): The best point guards are the ones who can get a basket when their team needs a basket but do not necessarily need to get baskets to feed their egos. You follow me? In other words, a great point guard is a guy good enough to be selfish, yet unselfish in every way. That's why Steele (14.3 points and 4.3 assists per game last season) tops this list. He's a 6-foot-3 playmaker who just might lead the Crimson Tide to the Final Four.

The rest of the article can be found here: Steele best PG according to article

Bobby Brown is #9... who knew he had eligibility left?

Monday, October 02, 2006

Who's the best NBA player to play at Alabama?

Just to clarify what I'm asking... I'm looking for a former player that's excelled in the NBA.

I was going through a bunch of names... Buck Johnson, McKey, Benoit, Sprewell, Horry, McDyess, Wallace, Mo Williams, Darby Rich (just checking to see if you're paying attention) and none of them jump out at me. If we go by who has the most rings then it's Horry by a mile. That won't work as Horry has been a role player his entire career (and a damn good one at that).

McDyess was on fire with Denver and Phoenix, but injuries slowed him down... otherwise I'd go with him. Buck Johnson was a workhorse, but a role player. McKey... very similar to Horry minus the rings. It's too early to give Mo or Gerald Wallace the nod... and truth be told I doubt either can be regarded the best to play at Alabama. Benoit probably overachieved the most... making it undrafted, but he was another role player.

In the end I have to go with Sprewell. His pro career outshines his collegiate one. He averaged at least 15 PPG up until his final year in Minnesota in 2004, was a multiple time All-Star, and was part of that surprising '99 NY Knick team that somehow made it to the finals (as an 8 seed).

Note- I'm dating this back 20 years to 1986.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Early SEC Team Previews

From collegehoops.net

Arkansas
South Carolina
Vandy
Georgia
Mississippi State
Auburn

I agree with everything except the Arkansas and Miss St predictions.

Edit- I totally missed the Ole Miss preview (thanks to Hville for finding it). I didn't think to look at #138 to find a SEC team. YIKES!
Ole Miss

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

SI Q&A with Ronald Steele

Q&A with Steele
Nice interview... nothing new (or anything we haven't heard) but good press for the Alabama basketball program.

There's a mistake on the site... on the front page of the site- SI
Ronald Steele returns for his junior season after averaging 14.3 points for Alabama during last year's Sweet 16 run.

If we were a Sweet 16 team last year, they'd be even more hype to this upcoming season.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Winston to play in Greek league

Kennedy Winston agreed to play for Panionios Forthnet Athens of Greek's A1 League this season.

Mobile Press Register Article

Additionally, here is the up-to-the-minute status of former Alabama players, now playing overseas, in no particular order...

Erwin Dudley has re-signed with Turk Telekom Ankara (Turkish D-1 League).
Chuck Davis will go head to head aginst Dudley playing for Casa TED Kolejliler Ankara (Turkish D-1 League).
Kenny Walker has signed with Reales de La Vega (DOM-LIDOBA North) in the Dominican Republic.
Michael Ansley is probable to return to Stal Ostrow Wielkopolski for the Dominet Basket Liga in Poland.
David Benoit is probable to return Saitama Broncos of the Japanese BJ League.
M.C. Mazique has signed with Ovarense Aerosoles Ovar in the Portuguese TMN League.
Ernest Shelton has signed with Pizza Express Apollon Limassol in the Cypress A1 League.
Emmett Thomas has signed with the Druid City Dragons of the WBA, not to be confused with the WNBA.
Eric Washington is probable to return to the Idaho Stampede of the CBA.
Jim Farmer and Buck Johnson are currently on the roster for the Birmingham Magicians of the ABA.
Brian Williams has signed with Qatar Club in the Qatar D-1 League.
Demetrius Alaxander has signed with Caja San Fernando Sevilla of the Spanish ACB League.

That is all that is available for now. There will obviously be additional news after the NBA Camps begin to cut players.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

HOORAY! Schedule finally released...

... no Seton Hall so I guess that fell through.
2006-2007 schedule

The OOC schedule isn't as murderous as Kentucky or LSU, but it is tough enough to prepare the team for the tournament. We probably should be favored to win all of our OOC games as Notre Dame and NC State (the name road games) will likely struggle.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

And then there was 1... Vandy schedule released

Decent OOC schedule

Maybe our schedule will be released before the season begins. While I'm aware of the late Seton Hall add, does it really take this long to get the schedule released? I have to shake my head sometimes at things IMO the AD is late to the party with.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Arkansas and Auburn schedules (updated)

Interesting matchup at Missouri

Outside of going to Texas, the Hogs have a relatively easy OOC schedule. The interesting game is them going to Missouri to play against their former HC (Mike Anderson).
What could've been at Arkansas...

Auburn and their 72 fans celebrate the 2006-2007 schedule:
The curtain to be 25% drawn

Seriously, I think this is the year Lebo makes strides... something like 6 wins in conference. Maybe they can challenge Dave Odom's 'Cocks for the NIT.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Gottfried courts Big East teams for home game (update)

Looks like the Seton Hall Pirates are signed for a 2 game series. On the bright side the team gets a trip to NYC... or close enough.
Tide-Pirates agree?

TUSCALOOSA -- Alabama basketball coach Mark Gottfried is one game away from completing his schedule for 2006-07, and that late November date might be against a Big East opponent.

Gottfried has had discussions with Seton Hall and Georgetown University, among a small handful of schools, about starting a home-and-home series that would begin this season, most likely in Tuscaloosa the last week in November.

"I'm hoping I can get it done, in principle, today, and by next week it'll be through," Gottfried said Monday.

The ninth-year Alabama coach said he could not release his schedule until the final contract has been signed, and that he'd overnight a contract the day he receives verbal confirmation.


Rest of the article can be read here:
Adding a Big East school to the schedule?

Seton Hall isn't what they used to be...since PJ left the program is barely above water. Georgetown on the other hand is on it's way back to the glory days of the 80s. I'd love to matchup with the Hoyas.

This quote from CMG bothers me:
"We're the football school that's getting a lot of respect nationally as a basketball team," Gottfried said. "There are a lot of times we're not a real attractive opponent. People don't want to get beat by a team that their fans think is a football school."

He's right on the money, but I'm not sure I would publicly say that. Florida is a football school, but their program is not viewed as a stepchild anymore. Ditto for Ohio State, but they don't hear the "we're a football school" mantra anymore.

Alabama basketball shouldn't be a stepchild either. You know how we take the next step... win SEC Championships and advance to the 2nd and 3rd week of the NCAA tournament with some regularity. That would put a stop to us being a football school with a nice niche basketball program... at least nationally.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Some SEC schedules released

LSU- Loaded
Mississippi State- Mostly Cupcakes
Ole Miss- Not bad considering

Florida- Stout
Kentucky- Brutally tough as usual
South Carolina- Kansas and cupcake city
Tennessee- Not bad

I couldn't find one for Auburn, Arkansas, Vandy, or Georgia... I'm guessing like Alabama they wait a while to release the schedule. Then again, the ones I listed beside us probably would rather talk about another sport. :)

It looks like the SEC isn't afraid to play the big boys in other conferences. UConn is on LSU's and Ole Miss' schedule, Kansas plays Florida and South Carolina, Texas plays LSU and Tennessee, not to mention the tournaments like the Maui Invitational (UK), Paradise Jam (Alabama), Preseason NIT (Tennessee), and the Las Vegas Invitational (Florida... and a tournament I wish we can schedule soon).

The SEC this season is almost as tough as the Big East top to bottom IMO. We shall see.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Hendrix gets to play with M.J.

Sunday, August 20, 2006
By PAUL GATTIS, Huntsville Times

Too bad one of Richard Hendrix's professors at Alabama won't ask him to write a paper about his summer vacation.
Too bad, because this could be the title: Played Hoops with Michael Jordan.

Earlier this month, and before returning for his sophomore season with the Crimson Tide, Hendrix traveled to Santa Barbara, Calif., with teammates Ron Steele and Jermareo Davidson to attend to the Michael Jordan Flight School.

"It was a great experience to go out with a couple of teammates and do a little skill development with the best coaches in the country," Hendrix said last week while spending some time at his parents' home in Athens.

Along with working as a youth counselor, Hendrix spent time developing a "go-to move" around the basket to make his game even better than in his freshman season. He averaged 9.4 points and 8 rebounds per game last season as the Tide made the NCAA Tournament second round.

The Alabama trio received invitations to the camp in part, Hendrix said, because Alabama is a Nike school and Jordan, of course, has long been a pitchman for the sneaker company.
Link to the rest of the article:
Hendrix gets to play with Air Jordan

Saturday, August 19, 2006

NCAA Gives Cloyd His Final Approval

According to this article on the CBS page, Cloyd now has been cleard to play:

Cloyd cleared by NCAA... again
And from al.com:
Whoo hoo!

I honestly think we now have all the tools we need for our first Final Four run. Anything can happen, especially in the tournament, but this is the most talented team Bama has fielded in quite a while and it really should be a special year.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Coach Mark Gottfried will speak at the Bama Club of NW FL in Pcola Thurs Aug 24,

Time is 6-8pm

Place St Anne's Catholic Church Family Life Center 5200 Saufley Field Rd

Dress is Crimson Casual

Cost $20. for members & $25. for non-members (dinner is included catered by former Bama football player Doug Allen of Beulah Land BBQ

There will also be a football report by former football player Dr Randy Hall

Contact numbers: (850)384-1526 or (850)456-5007

Info courtesy of '2 4 Bama'

Unfortunately, I have promised to be in Tuscaloosa that night so I will not be able to support the event, but all Bama Basketball fans in the area should help support this effort and try to meet the coach.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Cloyd not out of woods yet with NCAA

TUSCALOOSA | Donald Jackson, the attorney for recently admitted University of Alabama basketball player Verice Cloyd, told CBS SportsLine.com this weekend that he is concerned that the NCAA may launch a “lengthy review" into Cloyd and dozens of other former prep school players, possibly delaying their eligibility past the start of the upcoming college basketball season.

“I had hoped … all this was over," Jackson said in the interview. “But this is far from over."

Jackson represents Cloyd, a freshman guard played at Genesis One Prep in Mendenhall, Miss. Cloyd had to wait through a long, highly publicized process before gaining NCAA clearance and, ultimately, admission into UA


NCAA clears but then wants to punish?

My $.02... crap or get off the pot NCAA. Either say you will or won't accept players from schools like this. Don't be wishy washy. All this does is put a kid's college career on hold as the NCAA figures out what they want to do... and we all know they take their sweet ass time doing so!

This irks me to no end!