Saturday, January 24, 2015

Fresh Meat- Auburn Tigers 8:30PM EST (7:30PM CST)

Auburn (10-8/2-3) visits Tuscaloosa to take on OUR Crimson tide (12-6/2-3)

This is a big game for both teams. Both are coming off disappointing losses... us to Arkansas in OT and the Barn to M$U at home. Auburn has yet to win a road game so we have that going for us.

Write-up 1
Write-up 2

I think DJC and I have harped on this before, but I'm going to go on a small rant about HAVING A FOOTBALL TROPHY PRESENTATION at halftime of the basketball game. I hate this... no I DESPISE THIS "tradition" as I see it as a slight on basketball. I don't remember attending a game @ BDS where the basketball team was showcased at halftime. It's a bad rub and reinforces that hoops is just passing the time between football season and the ogling of HS kids (recruiting). I wonder if there are other SEC rivalries that do this... I can't think of one.

KT Harrell and Antoine Mason (son of one of my favorite ex-NY Knicks Anthony) lead the way with 17.2 and 14.0 PPG. Cinmeon Bowers is one to watch on the boards as he's averaging a double-double (13.4/11.6) for the year. Jordon Granger is one to watch beyond the arc as he's hitting 44% beyond the arc.

Note- Bruce Pearl is 5-3 all-time vs Alabama.

Some #s:
- 67.9 PPG and 68.0 PPG allowed
- -3.5 rebound margin
- 16.1 turnovers/game forced

Game is on the SEC Network.


CTider said...

Add me to the list of those who can't stand the trophy presentation. It's an insult to both of these basketball programs.

RichTide said...

I hated it as a student and I hate it more when 50% of the crowd leaves after the halftime presentation.

Really didn't get everyone's ambivalence about the USCe loss a couple weeks ago. A team that is now 1-5 in conference. "As long as we win 3 of the next 5." Well 3 losses in a row, tough game tonight, likely losses in the next 2 and we're looking at 3-5. We will be lucky to go 9-9 in conference play. Auburn is hot and cold but Pearl can flat out coach during a game. If this one is close, who do you think will make the crucial decisions? We'll win tonight if the team can keep the crowd in the game and stay until the end. If it's close at halftime and we're playing the "jack it up with 3 sec left offense" they could easily lose. Auburn will pound away in the paint and on the boards. If we lose tonight, Jenny bar the door. It's about to get cra cra in T-town.

Everyone saying tonight is Grant's biggest game but it should be very winnable against what will be Pearl's worst Auburn team. His biggest game is next against Eddie Munster. The weakest Gator team in 15 yrs and Grant hasn't shown any ability to coach a competitive game against him. If we can't beat them at home this year, and Battle posts another Grant love memo, time to label Bama basketball irrelevant.

RichTide said...

Oh and by the way, that Arkansas team that we had a great "moral victory" against barely beat a terrible Mizzou team who couldn't make free throws.

RichTide said...

Turned on the game real quick. Turned it off when I saw three 30-ft heaves with on straight possessions with seconds left on the shot clock. Wow. You can say one thing about Grant teams, they are consistent regardless of the talent. Back to family time. How can anyone travel to Coleman to watch this in person?

RichTide said...

The lack of fundamentals on our team is downright frightening. Looking at the first half how is there any way this team gets to double digit SEC victories? We have an SEC defense and a HS offense.

Going into conference play many of the Grant apologists were crowing about avoiding the bad loss we routinely have before Jan, but the only reason it didn't happen with this team is this one has talent. Same crap with the best players he's ever had. And Lacey all but confirmed Grant coaches his players down, not up, on the offensive end. Breaks them down and makes them scared to shoot. It is part of his game plan to limit offensive possessions and that involves passing it around the perimeter until late in the shot clock.

Pick about any other coach in the SEC and imagine what they could do with this team...

RichTide said...

Congrats to the players but the last second bucket and terrible officiating just gave massive ammunition to the apologists to extol the virtuosity of Grant's coaching. I hope everyone realizes we are in a lose/lose situation. Simply, if he can't get his act together, we're stuck with him. He's starts doing well and he's gone somewhere else. Absolutely no way his long term plan is to stay at Bama. Mark my words, Gators beat us by 15+, Kentucky wins by 30+. Tonight just prolonged the inevitable, one way or the other. I'm so beyond supporting CAG but will never be mad over a win against the Barn.

CTider said...

Nice comeback, that only reaffirms how talented they are and how much better they should be than what they have been this year. I have no idea why it took 35 minutes for us to play with intensity against our biggest rival. The Levi that showed up tonight needs to be that kind of leader and take that kind of mentality the rest of the year. I hope he doesn't revert back to passive Levi, and go back to pump-faking wide open three pointers, but I have my doubts based on his career. Despite all of this, a win over the Barn is a win over the Barn. RTR (BTW, did anyone see Grant's cold shoulder towards Pearl at the end of the game?)

Tripp Goude said...

I defiantly noticed it. I actually went back and watched it and he may have said 2 words and quickly walked past him.

CTider said...

Have to agree. We have four and five star recruits all over the floor and can't comfortably beat what will be Pearl's worst team at Auburn. This team is very talented, but like you said doesn't have the fundamentals of basketball instilled in them because they don't have coaching. Put Grant on the Barn and give Alabama Pearl, and Alabama wins by 20 tonight. Given that this we almost lost to Pearl's first team at home, and the talent he has coming in next year, I fear that this is our last win over those guys for a while. God, I hope I'm wrong.

256Bradley said...

ive notice that to Levi passing up wide open shots I dont get it. Grant has 2 find away 2 get recruits to these games. we only sell out 3 times a year at best

Cam said...

Really want to see Devin Mitchell play we could use the outside shooting.

Msmilie said...

Well, I see this comment thread is of the piss-and-moan variety. Nice to see you guys celebrate wins by treating them like losses. But I digress.

Yes, Alabama played really poorly last night. And yet, they won the game. That's a positive in my opinion. I was concerned about the quick turnaround from a physical game that went into overtime on Thursday on the road at a place that is one of the tougher places to travel to in the league. I was hoping the urgency of this game would offset that, but this team clearly didn't have their legs under them for much of the game. And I thought that extended to the coaching staff as well. It was not their best performance, not by a long shot. In addition to what appeared to be mental and physical fatigue for Bama, Auburn's small line-up caused some match-up problems. And, frankly, I thought Auburn wanted the game a little more. Fortunately, Levi and Coop stepped up and made some huge plays. From an objective point of view, it was nice to see the basketball version of the rivalry (both the men's and women's games) finally have some of the same intensity as we've seen on the football field. Kudos to the fans who showed up last night. Not sure Bama wins this game without the crowd support down the stretch.

Disappointed in Ricky Tarrant. For a redshirt junior, I thought he played with zero composure throughout the game. I can appreciate passion and the desire to win, but Ricky didn't manifest it in a positive manner. He seemed to be looking for a fight all night instead of putting his energy into playing basketball. I hate to say it, but his ejection may have been the most important point in the game. Not only did it give the Bama team and crowd a surge emotionally, it took a player off the court for Alabama who simply wasn't playing winning basketball. This team needs Ricky to show more maturity and leadership than he did last night. Hopefully he can grow from this.

Shannon Hale quietly had his best game in weeks. Finished with 9 points (3-5 FG, 2-4 3-pt), 2 rebounds and a steal. He did have three turnovers, but I thought he played a nice game overall. The rest of the bench was just okay, with the exception of Justin who I thought played solid minutes at the point before and after Ricky left the game. He only finished with 3 points, but had 3 assists and 0 turnovers. And I really loved the huddle late in the game with Levi and Coop at the center of it. Sometimes, it's better for coaches to just step aside and let players figure it out. I don't know if this game can serve as a spark for Alabama moving forward, but the team may feel as if they have a second life after a gritty win of this type.

Another important game on Tuesday. Alabama has not beaten Florida during the Grant tenure. Florida is as vulnerable as they've been maybe ever under Donovan. With the game in Tuscaloosa, this is a game Alabama needs to win on Tuesday night.

bobbyjack said...

A win is a win and I'll take it, but that 1st half set basketball back 30 years. Nice comeback from down 9 late and as MS pointed out it started when Tarrant was ejected. Levi and Rodney took over and that was the difference. I know Tarrant is 2nd in the team in scoring, but I feel he take A LOT of ill-advised shots. Considering he's shooting just a tad over 40% maybe he wants to get better looks.
I also noticed the slight in the post game handshake... my guess is Grant knows Pearl lobbied for his job and didn't like it. Well... that would've never been an issue if the previous 5 years brought any real success.

CTider said...

Considering that both of the flagrants called on Tarrant were from reviews that Pearl argued for, Grant may have seen Pearl as the reason that his point guard got thrown out of the game, which could have been the reason for the post game slight, IMO. I probably would have done the same thing after a game like this. Like him or hate him, Pearl has given this rivalry a pulse again, which is great.

Drifter said...

"Sometimes, it's better for coaches to just step aside and let players figure it out."
Especially with this coach.