Friday, July 12, 2019

More Schedule News: Battle 4 Atlantis Bracket Released; Richmond Added To Schedule

DJC has already mentioned this in the comments section of the previous post but, if you'll indulge me, I'd like to write a bit more about this news. After all, schedule news is almost as fun to me as the games themselves.

The bracket for the Battle 4 Atlantis was released on Thursday. Along with the Maui Invitational, this has become the premier early-season event in college basketball. That Alabama will participate in both events in the next two seasons is great for the program.

Alabama's first opponent in The Bahamas will be a little basketball school by the name of North Carolina. Perhaps you've heard of them. Alabama will play the Tar Heels on Wednesday, November 27 at 1:30 PM CT. Win or lose, this is a great opportunity for our guys. If you're good enough to play D1 basketball, these are the kind of games you want to play. The trip to The Bahamas is a cherry on top. The entire event will be played November 27-29 so free up your Thanksgiving calendar now. The other matchup on this side of the bracket is Michigan/Iowa State. The matchups in the bottom half of the bracket are Gonzaga/Southern Miss and Seton Hall/Oregon.

CBS Sports Jon Rothstein also tweeted on Thursday that Alabama will host the Richmond Spiders from the Atlantic-10 conference this season. The previous meeting between the schools was in 2017 in Tuscaloosa in the first round of the NIT. If you remember, the Spiders thoroughly outplayed Alabama in that game, winning 71-64. One of three first round NIT losses during Avery Johnson's tenure, but I digress. Unfortunately for Richmond, the two seasons since have been rough as the program has only won a total of 25 games in that span.

The date for the Stephen F. Austin game appears to be December 6th, based on a public record obtained by The D1 Docket (@TheD1Docket on Twitter). This is the return game in a home-and-home series after Alabama traveled to Nacogdoches, TX last season.

It's not official, but it appears that Alabama will be taking part in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge again this season. Earlier this week, the SEC and America Athletic Conference (AAC) announced a four-game mini-challenge between the two conferences. The four games are Houston/South Carolina, Georgia/Memphis, SMU/Vanderbilt and Ole Miss/Wichita State. Why this is important to Alabama fans is because Cecil Hurt mentioned on Twitter that Alabama wasn't taking part because they will be in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge. That leads me to believe that the four SEC schools mentioned above are the ones not included in the SEC/Big 12 event. So start making your predictions for which Big 12 school will visit Tuscaloosa this season (Alabama traveled to Baylor last season so I assume they will be a home team in the event this season). The Big 12 teams that played at home in the event last season were Texas Tech, Baylor, Oklahoma, TCU and Oklahoma State. My early prediction is that Oklahoma State or TCU will be the Big 12 opponent traveling to Tuscaloosa.

This post is running longer than I intended, but I wanted to include a few more things. First and foremost, Kira Lewis Jr. and Team USA won the gold medal at the FIBA U19 World Cup. It's a tremendous accomplishment for Kira and his teammates. Assistant Coach Bryan Hodgson traveled to Greece to lend support.

And finally, I wanted to post a video. It's a discussion from earlier this week between Coach Oats and Wimp and Barry Sanderson on their radio show. It's about twenty minutes, and it covers a lot of ground so check it out if you haven't heard it yet.

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