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Alabama women’s golf vs. Arizona for the national championship: Preview, TV info

Alabama golf-Crimson Tide golf-Angelica Moresco-NCAA Championships

Wednesday should be an interesting day for University of Alabama athletic director Greg Byrne.

When the Crimson Tide women’s golf team plays for the national championship, it’ll be facing his former school and the coach he hired in 2010.

Laura Ianello, then known as Laura Myerscough, played for the Wildcats from 1998-2003 and was part of the Wildcats’ 2000 national championship. She spent five seasons playing professionally, but went back to Arizona to finish up her degree and became an assistant coach.

Ianello was the first of Byrne’s nine coaching hires at Arizona. Football’s Rich Rodriguez was his third in November 2011, and baseball’s Jay Johnson was his last in 2015. During his first season, Johnson led the Wildcats to the College World Series Finals.

Tournament details

  • What: NCAA Women’s Match Play Championship
  • When: 3:25 ET Wednesday.
  • Where: Karsten Creek, Stillwater, Okla.
  • Par: 72; Yardage: 6328
  • Weather forecast: The Weather Channel forecast is for partly cloudy skies, high of 87 degrees, winds SSE 9 mph. There’s a 25 percent chance of rain.

The pairings

Alabama players are listed first, along with individual pre-tournament rankings.

  1. Lauren Stephenson (3) vs. Yu-Sang Hou (31)
  2. Kristen Gillman (6) vs. Gigi Stoll (75)
  3. Cheyenne Knight (19) vs. Bianca Pagdanganan (67)
  4. Angelica Moresco (91) vs. Sandra Nordaas (NR)
  5. Lakareber Abe (54) vs. Haley Moore (28)
Alabama golf-Crimson Tide golf-Lakareber Abe-NCAA Championships
Senior Lakareber Abe will be playing her final collegiate match when Alabama faces Arizona for the national title. Photo by UA Athletics/courtesy.

What’s the best way to keep up with the match

Fans have numerous options:

TV: The Golf Channel will show the match beginning at 4 p.m. ET.

Live updates: Will be posted on SEC Country

Live stats: Will be available on golfstat.com

Twitter updates: @AlabamaWGolf

What you should know

  • The SEC hasn’t won the national title since the championships went to the same format as the men, with four days of stroke play followed by the match-play playoffs, in 2015. The winners have all been from the Pac-12, with Stanford, Washington and Arizona State. The last SEC team to win the title was Alabama in 2012.
  • The Wildcats shot +17 on the final day of stroke play and needed an eagle on the par-5 18thhole by Bianca Pagdangdanan to force a playoff with Baylor for the last spot in the quarterfinals. She also made a birdie on 18 in the quarterbacks to top UCLA’s Patty Tavatanakit as Arizona won the match 3-2.
  • Alabama came into the tournament as the top-seeded team and finished the stroke-play portion tied for first. Had the tiebreaker gone the other way, with UCLA places first in the match-ply bracket, Alabama and Arizona would have played in the quarterfinals.
  • Arizona is looking for its first national championship in women’s golf since 2000.It also won the title in 1996. Alabama is aiming to win its second national title.
  • The Alabama men’s players and coaches will arrive early to cheer on the women’s team and check out the course. After a practice round on Thursday, their version of the NCAA Championships will begin on Friday.

The post Alabama women’s golf vs. Arizona for the national championship: Preview, TV info appeared first on SEC Country.

Christopher Walsh – SEC Country

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Alabama softball has to go through Washington to reach WCWS: Preview, TV info

Alabama softball-Crimson Tide softball-NCAA Super Regional

Although the University of Alabama softball team would probably never admit it, this was the scenario it was trying to avoid.

When the brackets were announced for the 2018 NCAA Softball Tournament, the Crimson Tide were hoping for two things:

1) To host a regional (which it did);

2) Have a favorable path to the College World Series.

This was anything but that.

Granted, any opponent would be tough at this point, but Alabama knows how tough Washington can be. The Crimson Tide visited Seattle early in the season when the Huskies were atop both major polls at No. 1.

They lost the first meeting 8-0 in five innings and the second 4-1.

No. 12 Alabama isn’t quite the same team and might be the healthiest it has been all season, but beating the Huskies twice in their own stadium is a daunting task. No. 5 Washington is 15-3 at home this season, and all three losses were to Oregon, the tournament’s top-seeded team.

Super Regional details

  • Format: Best-of-three.
  • When: The games are scheduled for 9 p.m. ET Friday, 7 p.m. Saturday and 7 p.m. Sunday.
  • Where: Husky Softball Stadium.
  • Weather forecast: Although it could get a little chilly, The Weather Channel forecast is otherwise ideal with no rain expected.

What’s the best way to keep up with the game

Fans have numerous options:

TV: Game 1 is scheduled for ESPNU, Game 2 is scheduled for ESPN2, and Game 3, if necessary, will be back on ESPNU.

Radio: 93.3 FM in Tuscaloosa.

Live video will be available (Game 1, Game 2 and Game 3)

Live stats will be available.

Twitter updates: @AlabamaSB

What you should know

  • Alabama (36-18) is coming off an impressive showing at the Tuscaloosa Regional, during which it gave up one run against Middle Tennessee, Wisconsin and Oregon State. The Crimson Tide is the only team to play in a Super Regional every year since the format was introduced in 2005.
  • Sophomore center fielder Elissa Brown has moved into the team lead with a .357 batting average. She went 4-for-7 (.571) last weekend. She has stolen 30 bases. Coming off a foot injury, sophomore first baseman Bailey Hemphill hit her 13thhome run and is batting .350 (41 for 117). She leads the Tide in RBI (48) and walks (39).
  • Alabama will see a lot of freshman Gabbie Plain (19-4, 1.03 ERA) and junior Taran Alvelo (21-4, 1.16), as the Washington staff has an ERA of 1.13. The Crimson Tide will counter with senior Alexis Osorio (15-9, 2.10) and junior Courtney Gettins (14-4, 2.37).
  • Washington (47-8) swept Boise State, Texas and Minnesota in its regional and allowed three runs.
  • This will be the fourth postseason meeting between the programs. Washington lost to Alabama in the 2015 Regionals and 2016 Super Regionals, but defeated the Crimson Tide in Super Regionals in 2007 in Seattle.
  • The winner of the Seattle Super Regional will advance to play in the double-elimination Women’s College World Series, beginning May 31 in Oklahoma City. With the brackets fixed, the next opponent will be either No. 4 Oklahoma or No. 13 Arkansas. Overall, nine of the 16 remaining teams are from the SEC.

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Christopher Walsh – SEC Country

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Alabama men’s golf vs. Oklahoma State for the national championship: Preview, TV info

Alabama golf-Crimson Tide golf-Wilson Furr-NCAA Championships

University of Alabama coach Jay Seawell knows what to expect because he’s been here before.

In this case, here is the national championship match, which the Crimson Tide have reached for the fourth time since 2012. It lost the first time against Jordan Spieth and Texas, but came back to win back-to-back titles in 2013-14  — the second of which was against the team Alabama will be facing Wednesday afternoon, Oklahoma State.

The Crimson Tide won 4-1, in Hutchinson, Kansas.

This time Oklahoma State has the advantage of playing on its home course.

The top-seeded Cowboys have been considered the team to beat in college golf all season. Every player has a sub-par scoring average, with three who were ranked in the top 15 individually prior to the tournament with No. 4 Matthew Wolff, No. 5 Viktor Hovland and No. 14 Zach Bauchou.

The Cowboys notched seven straight wins and nine overall, one short of trying the program record set in 1985-86. Overall, OSU has won 10 national titles and been the runner-up 17 times.

It also has a strong fan base, with approximately 5,000 expected to show up and root for the home team.

“We realize that [Wednesday] we’re going to hit a lot of good shots and won’t hear a single thing except for maybe a mom and a dad, so I know that’s coming, and there’s nothing wrong with it,” Seawell said. “That’s what makes it great. So we’ll share a little bit what happened in Kansas a little bit because they probably had a couple thousand people in Kansas and we had like 100. So it’ll be a lot more than that [Wednesday]. But there’s still five guys playing golf, and that’s what we’ve tried to talk about the whole time.”

Tournament details

  • What: NCAA Men’s Match Play Championship
  • When: 3:25 ET Wednesday.
  • Where: Karsten Creek, Stillwater, Okla.
  • Par: 72; Yardage: 7,460 yards
  • Weather forecast: It rained Tuesday night, but sunny conditions are expected despite a few afternoon clouds. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible. A high of 94 degrees with winds at 5 to 10 mph. The chance of rain is 20 percent.

The pairings

Alabama players are listed first.

  1. Lee Hodges  vs. Viktor Hovland
  2. Davis Riley vs. Matthew Wolff
  3. Wilson Furr vs. Kristoffer Ventura
  4. Davis Shore vs. Austin Eckroat
  5. Jonathan Hardee  vs. Zach Bauchou

What’s the best way to keep up with the match

Fans have numerous options:

What you should know

  • No. 6 Alabama advanced by defeating Texas Tech 3-2 in the quarterfinals, and swept Duke 5-0 in the semifinals. No. 1 Oklahoma State squeezed out a 3-1-1 win over Texas A&M, and won 3-2 over Auburn on Tuesday.
  • Alabama’s two freshmen, Davis Shore and Wilson Furr, combined to go 4-0 on their matches. “I’ve never been on a team with freshmen who can play this way,” Crimson Tide senior Lee Hodges said. “I knew they’d be great players, but they’re even better than I thought.”
  • Former Alabama player Justin Thomas, now ranked No. 1 in the world, spent some time with the team last week when in Tuscaloosa for a charity event. He also practiced at the team facility and has been sending the players texts this week. “When he talks, he’s someone you listen to,” junior Davis Riley said.
  • Seawell on his team playing for the national championship. “I will never take this for granted, so I feel as excited as I did in 2012 when the first time we did this. I feel exactly the same. I’m just really proud for the guys. It’s a player’s game. I get to drive the van. I love coming to work every day and doing all the things that we do because these are special kids. And I think we forget sometimes how hard people work just to be  —  to have this opportunity, and I’m thankful that I get a front row seat to that.”

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Christopher Walsh – SEC Country

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When will Alabama guard Collin Sexton be selected: 2018 NBA Draft preview, TV info

Alabama basketball-Crimson Tide basketball-Collin Sexton-NBA Draft-2018 NBA Draft

It’s been a long wait, but former University of Alabama guard Collin Sexton will finally know his NBA destination Thursday night.

The one-and-done player is expected to be a lottery selection, which means a top-14 pick, although there’s a lot of contrasting speculation about when and where he’ll end up.

“[Thursday] is going to be exciting, especially after the draft,” Sexton said in a release Wednesday. “Everybody is looking forward to it. There is so much excitement in the air because it’s the day that everybody is waiting for, just to see where you land and see your dreams come true.”

Sexton averaged 19.2 points, 3.8 rebounds and 3.6 assists in 29.9 minutes per game while leading Alabama to the NCAA Tournament.

The speedy and aggressive guard is one of 20 players to attend the draft. For the first time in their history, the Phoenix Suns have the top selection.

Sexton is poised to be the first Crimson Tide player selected in the two-round draft since Richard Hendrix in 2008, and first first-round pick since Gerald Wallace in 2001.   

2018 NBA Draft details

  • When: 7 p.m. ET, Thursday
  • Where: Barclays Center, Brooklyn, N.Y.
  • TV: ESPN
  • Watch Online: WatchESPN.com
  • Live updates: NBA.com

When and where do the mock drafts have Collin Sexton selected?

On his Mock Draft Show that aired Tuesday night, David Aldridge of TNT had Sexton selected sixth by the Orlando Magic. He also made it clear that he’s not very good at mock drafts.

Jeremy Woo of Sports Illustrated projected Sexton to be picked ninth by the New York Knicks, saying “There’s a growing sense that the Knicks have zeroed in on drafting a point guard at this spot.”

NBADraft.net has Sexton lasting until the Charlotte Hornets at No. 11.

The consensus mock draft compiled by NBA.com listed Sexton among the most common picks at No. 12 to the Los Angeles Clippers, stating: “His toughness and competitive streak are viewed highly by pro evaluators, even drawing comparisons to Russell Westbrook.” However, it then projected him to go 11th to the Hornets.

A team of writers from USA Today interviewed numerous NBA officials before putting together their mock draft. The had him at No. 9 to the Knicks, but added, “The guard-depleted Cavs are known to be interested in Sexton as well.” That’s exactly where Sean Deveney of The Sporting News has Sexton heading with the eighth selection.

ESPN Insider Jonathan Givony has Sexton heading to the Clippers. … Both Carl Berman at netscouts.com and Gary Parrish of CBSsports.com have Sexton joining the Knicks. … The lowest projection we could find was by Jordan Schultz of Yahoo Sports, No. 14 by Denver Nuggets.

2018 NBA Draft order, first round

  1. Phoenix Suns
  2. Sacramento Kings
  3. Atlanta Hawks
  4. Memphis Grizzlies
  5. Dallas Mavericks
  6. Orlando Magic
  7. Chicago Bulls
  8. Cleveland Cavaliers
  9. New York Knicks
  10. Philadelphia 76ers
  11. Charlotte Hornets
  12. Los Angeles Clippers
  13. Los Angeles Clippers
  14. Denver Nuggets
  15. Washington Wizards
  16. Phoenix Suns
  17. Milwaukee Bucks
  18. San Antonio Spurs
  19. Atlanta Hawks
  20. Minnesota Timberwolves
  21. Utah Jazz
  22. Chicago Bulls
  23. Indiana Pacers
  24. Portland Trail Blazers
  25. Los Angeles Lakers
  26. Philadelphia 76ers
  27. Boston Celtics
  28. Golden State Warriors
  29. Brooklyn Nets
  30. Atlanta Hawks

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Christopher Walsh – SEC Country

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Alabama softball may be without staff ace against Ole Miss: Series info, preview

Alabama softball-Crimson Tide softball-Patrick Murphy

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — The University of Alabama softball team might still be without its ace pitcher, Alexis Osorio, when it hosts Ole Miss for a three-game series this weekend.

The senior has yet to be cleared from concussion protocol after being struck in the face by a batted ball at Auburn last Sunday.

She’s thrown 61.0 of the team’s 173.1 innings, amassing 101 strikeouts for an average of 1.67 per inning. The two-time All-American has a 1.61 ERA.

If she’s still sidelined, the Crimson Tide will have to rely on their other two pitchers, who are both new additions this season. Courtney Gettins, a junior-college transfer, is 8-2 with a 1.62 ERA, with 34 strikeouts and 28 walks. Freshman left-hander Madison Preston is 6-2 with a 1.83 ERA, 36 strikeouts and 21 walks.

Alabama is No. 15 in the USA Today/NFCA poll and No. 16 in the ESPN.com/USA Softball poll. In early RPI ranking, Alabama is No. 20 and Ole Miss 35th.

Series details

  • What: Ole Miss (15-10, 1-5 SEC) at Alabama (20-7, 1-2)
  • When: 7:30 p.m. ET Friday, 3 p.m. Saturday, 2:30 p.m. Sunday
  • Where: Rhoads Stadium
  • Weather forecast: According to the Weather Channel, rain isn’t in the forecast until Sunday afternoon when scattered thunderstorms will go through the Tuscaloosa area. The chance of rain is 50 percent, so keep an eye out for a possible preemptive schedule change.

What’s the best way to keep up with the games

Fans have numerous options:

Radio: 93.3 FM in Tuscaloosa.

Live video can be found on SEC Network+: Game 1, Game 2 and Game 3

Live stats will be available.

Twitter updates: @AlabamaSB

What you should know

  • The last meeting between the teams was in the SEC Tournament, a 4-1 victory for Ole Miss. Overall, Alabama leads the series 58-5, and had a 30-game win streak snapped in 2017.
  • Former Alabama softball player Chandler Dare will be the analyst on the SEC Network broadcasts. Crimson Tide football play-by-play announcer Eli Gold is slated to call Sunday’s game.
  • The Rebels’ three primary pitchers are freshman left-hander Anna Borgen (2-4, 2.58 ERA), senior Kaitlin Lee (9-4, 2.66) and sophomore Morgan Bruce (2-0, 3.46).
  • Ole Miss batters have been struggling this season, batting .255 as a team, which is last in the SEC. Sophomore Kaylee Horton leading the Rebels with a .360 batting average. The 5-6 utility player hails from Jasper, Ala.
  • The Rebels are 13-2 when scoring first and 2-7 when playing from behind. They’re 10-0 when scoring in the first inning.
  • Alabama defense ranks second in the SEC with a .978 fielding percentage. The .273 batting average is 12th and the 1.70 ERA ninth.
  • Alabama doesn’t have any midweek games scheduled until mid-April. It’ll travel to Kentucky next weekend, and host Florida on April 7-9.

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Christopher Walsh – SEC Country

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Alabama softball hosts UAB to complete home-and-home: Game info, preview

Alabama softball-Crimson Tide softball

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Barring any added games, the University of Alabama softball team will play its final in-state opponent during the regular season when it hosts UAB on Tuesday evening.

It’s the second meeting between the teams, with the Crimson Tide pulling out a 4-0 victory at Mary Bowers Field on Feb. 27. This will complete the home-and-home series and Alabama’s in-state schedule having already faced Auburn and South Alabama.

Alabama’s only remaining non-conference game on the schedule is Southern Miss on April 18, although Coach Patrick Murphy might add some games to make up for rainouts.

Alabama is ranked No. 10 in the latest ESPN/USA Softball poll, and No. 12 in the USA Today/NFCA coaches poll.

Game details

  • What: UAB (10-19-1) at Alabama (19-7)
  • When: 7 p.m. ET, Tuesday
  • Where: Rhoads Stadium
  • Weather forecast: After the temperature was up near 80 degrees prior to Monday night’s storms, the forecast is for windy and cooler conditions. According to the Weather Channel there’s a slight chance of rain and the temperature should be near 50 degrees around game time.

What’s the best way to keep up with the games

Fans have numerous options:

Radio: 93.3 FM in Tuscaloosa.

Live video can be found on WatchESPN.

Live stats will be available.

Twitter updates: @AlabamaSB

What you should know

  • Alabama leads the all-time series 22-0, with 12 wins in Tuscaloosa.
  • Freshman Kaylee Tow has been a pleasant surprise so far, topping the Crimson Tide with a .362 batting average (25-for-69). She has 12 extra-base hits and her five home runs are tied with sophomore Bailey Hemphill for the team lead. Hemphill has reached base safely in 17 of her last 18 games, in part due to drawing team-leading 16 walks while hitting .333 (22-for-660 and knocking in 22 runs.
  • Sophomore center fielder Elissa Brown is batting .321 with 15 runs scored and is 17-for-17 in stolen bases.
  • Alabama’s team batting average of .268 is 12th out of 13 SEC teams. The 1.64 staff ERA is eighth.
  • In the first RPI of the season, releasedMonday, Alabama was No. 26. All 13 SEC teams are in the top 35.
  • Last week senior Peyton Grantham became the second Crimson Tide player to tally nine assists in a game this season, and third all-time. She had nine assists at third base in the March 14 win at Georgia Tech, less than a month after freshman Maddie Morgan had the same number while playing second base vs. Georgia State on Feb. 23.

Alabama Single-Game Assists

  1. Peyton Grantham at Georgia Tech (3/14/18): 9
  2. (tie)    Maddie Morgan vs. Georgia State (2/23/18): 9
  3. (tie)    Staci Ramsey at South Carolina (4/19/03): 9
  4. Kelley Montalvo vs. Memphis (2/7/09): 8
  5. (tie)  Kelly Kretschman at Ole Miss (4/9/99): 8
  6. (tie)    Kelly Kretschman vs. LSU (5/9/98): 8
  7. (tie)   Christy Kyle at Arkansas (3/15/97): 8
  • UAB sophomore outfielder Destini England was named Conference USA Player of the Week on Monday after she went 9-for-13 with eight RBI, four runs scored and hit three doubles in the series against UTEP. She hit .800 (4-for-5) with runners in scoring position and went 2-for-3 with the bases loaded.
  • Alabama will host Ole Miss for a three-game series beginning Friday. The Rebels (13-17) are ranked No. 15 and 23 in the polls.

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Alabama basketball needs to grow up fast vs. Tennessee: Game info and preview

Alabama basketball-Crimson Tide basketball-Daniel Giddens

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — After 24 games, it’s time for the University of Alabama basketball team  to grow up. That’s the message from Avery Johnson, who says that the Crimson Tide have enough talent to compete with any team in the nation.

They just need to play that way more often.

“The things that are not excusable are how we don’t take care of the ball, our spacing was poor,” Johnson said. “We didn’t make the extra pass enough. We weren’t ready to shoot.”

The coach was primarily taking about Alabama’s 67-63 loss at Mississippi State earlier this week. From the scoring droughts to the lack of offensive consistency there was a lot to talk about during the subsequent film session with players.

“It was definitely intense,” junior forward Daniel Giddens said.

Things won’t get an easier, either, as three of Alabama’s next four opponents are ranked in the AP Top 25, beginning with Saturday’s game against No. 15 Tennessee. The Crimson Tide are 4-1 against ranked opponents, but for every big win they seem to notch there’s been a corresponding disappointing loss to an unranked opponent like MSU.

Not only are the Volunteers coming of a big win at No. 24 Kentucky, 61-59, to sweep that series, but they’ve won six straight games and nine of the last 10.

“We’re playing against a very hot team,” Johnson said. “In my opinion one of the hottest teams in the country.”

Game details

  • Records: Alabama (15-9, 6-5); No. 15 Tennessee (18-5, 8-3 SEC)
  • Where: Coleman Coliseum
  • When: 6 p.m. ET

What’s the best way to keep up with the game

Fans have numerous options:

TV: SEC Network

Radio: In Tuscaloosa, WFFN 95.3 FM. Otherwise, games can be found on affiliates of the Crimson Tide Sports Network, or on TideTV.

Live stats: rolltide.com

Twitter updates: @AlabamaMBB

Dave Neal (play-by-play) and Jon Sundvold (analyst) will have the television broadcast, with Chris Stewart (play-by-play) and Bryan Passink (analyst) on radio.

What you should know

  • Freshman guard Collin Sexton is third in league scoring, averaging 18.6 points, to go with 3.8 rebounds and 3.3 assists. Junior forward Donta Hall has 10.8 points and 7.0 rebounds and 2.3 blocks. Also averaging double digits are freshman guard John Petty (10.7) and sophomore guard Dazon Ingram (10.3).
  • Alabama leads the overall series 78-68, and is 44-18 against the Vols in Tuscaloosa.
  • Tennessee is rated 10th in the NCAA RPI.
  • Volunteers reserve guard Lamonte Turner hails from Florence, Ala., but attended IMG Academy in Florida. He’s averaging 11.0 points and 3.2 rebounds off the bench, and leads the SEC in free-throw shooting (37-39, .949). UT coach Rick Barnes spent the 1985-86 season as an Alabama assistant coach under Wimp Sanderson.
  • Tennessee outscored Alabama 37-18 in the second half to win the last meeting between the teams, 59-54 in the 2017 regular season finale at Thompson-Boling Arena. Sophomore forward Grant Williams notched a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds, but the comeback was led by six 3-pointers.
  • Williams leads Tennessee in scoring, averaging 15.9 points, while junior forward Admiral Schofield is second at 12.5 to go with 6.3 rebounds.
  • Alabama will host LSU on Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET (SEC Network).

The post Alabama basketball needs to grow up fast vs. Tennessee: Game info and preview appeared first on SEC Country.

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Alabama basketball at Mississippi State: Game info and preview

Alabama basketball-Avery Johnson

University of Alabama men’s basketball coach Avery Johnson is playing the respect card with his team this week, but in a slightly different way.

Whereas most coaches talk about how they’re being disrespected to try and fire up their players emotionally, Johnson is playing up the other team, Mississippi State.

“Hopefully we’re going to play them like they’re a ranked team,” he said Monday afternoon.

On Tuesday, the Crimson Tide will look to avoid a setback just three days after pulling off a big victory at No. 23 Florida, 68-50. Alabama is 4-1 against ranked opponents this season, but 1-3 against the last four unranked teams it faced on the road.

This is the first time this season that Alabama will play an opponent for the second time. On January 20, sophomore guard Lamar Peters came off the bench to score 17 points. The Crimson Tide squandered a 41-22 halftime lead before finally pulling out a 66-62 home victory.

“I have a lot of respect for Mississippi State,” Johnson said. “Lamar Peters put on a show against us in the second half and we couldn’t guard him. We tired a lot of different things. We’re going to try and have a much better effort against him defensively.”

Peters now starts and is coming off a 20-point performance against Georgia.

Against SEC opponents, Alabama leads the league in blocks per game (5.7), and is second in scoring defense (65.6), field goal percentage defense (.392) and steals (7.5). The Crimson Tide is also fourth in 3-point field goal percentage defense (.307).

However, one thing Johnson couldn’t try against Peters was to put Collin Sexton on him defensively. The freshman guard didn’t play due to an abdominal injury that he’ll likely be dealing with the rest of the season.

“We have to take them seriously,” Johnson emphasized.

Game details

  • Records: Alabama (15-8, 6-4); Mississippi State (17-6, 5-5)
  • Where: Humphrey Coliseum, Starkville, Miss.
  • When: 7 p.m. ET

What’s the best way to keep up with the game

Fans have numerous options:

TV: SEC Network

Radio: In Tuscaloosa, WFFN 95.3 FM. Otherwise, games can be found on affiliates of the Crimson Tide Sports Network, or on TideTV.

Live stats: rolltide.com

Twitter updates: @AlabamaMBB

Roy Philpott (play-by-play) and Brooke Weisbrod (analyst) will have the television broadcast, with Chris Stewart (play-by-play) and Bryan Passink (analyst) on radio.

What you should know

• Alabama has won four straight in the series, and the last four meetings at Mississippi State. The Bulldogs have never lost five straight at home to the Crimson Tide.

• Since the teams last played, Mississippi State is 3-1 having lost at Kentucky 78-65, but has since won three straight against Missouri, South Carolina and Georgia. The win at the Gamecocks snapped a 12-game losing streak on the road, while the MSU ended a six-game losing streak to Georgia on Saturday.

• MSU guard Nick Weatherspoon was named the SEC Freshman of the Week after averaging 15.5 points, three rebounds and two assists over South Carolina and over Georgia. He shot 63.6 percent (14-of-22) from the field.

• Weatherspoon and Alabama freshman Herb Jones are tied for the SEC lead in charging fouls drawn with 18. His brother Quinndary, a junior guard, leads the Bulldogs in both scoring (15.0) and assists (4.0).

• Sexton was named to the  John Wooden Award late-season list Monday night.

• Alabama will host No. 15 Tennessee on Saturday at 6 p.m. ET (SEC Network).

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Christopher Walsh – SEC Country

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Alabama basketball vs. Oklahoma in Big 12/SEC Challenge: Game info and preview

Starting-five-top-players-Trae Young-NCAA-college basketball-Mohamed Bamba-Carsen Edwards-Jock Landale-Miles Bridges

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Although it may be the most high-profile matchup that University of Alabama basketball fans see this season at Coleman Coliseum, the Crimson Tide are trying to downplay Collin Sexton vs. Trae Young showdown.

Alabama had credentialed 57 NBA scouts and officials from 25 teams to watch the freshmen point guards square off Saturday afternoon, but he’s not the only player from No. 12 Oklahoma that Avery Johnson is concerned about.

“Hands down the best offensive team that we’ve faced this year —  probably in my two and a half years since I’ve been here,” the Crimson Tide coach said. “Trae Young is an outstanding young player, very dynamic. He passes it, he shoots it. He gets the high assists. Just really knows how to play the position.

“But you can’t get lost in watching him because they have some other guys.”

Young leads the country in both scoring (30.3) and assists (9.6) per game. To put that into perspective, no player in recorded NCAA history has finished a season leading the nation in both categories. He’s topped 40 points three times while shooting .451 from the field and .400 (80-of-200) from 3-point range.

Young also has no trouble launching NBA-long 3s while executing an efficient offense that’s tough to defend.

“We definitely don’t to have a game in the 90s,” Johnson said about the point total.

Oklahoma junior guard Christian Jones averages 12.1 points and 4.6 rebounds, while shooting 40.0 percent (38-of-95) from 3-point range. Freshman forward Brady Manek averages 11.3 points, 5.2 rebounds and is shooting 43.4 percent (43-of-99) from beyond the arc.

“They’re pretty much, like, catch-and-shoot guys,” freshman forward Herbert Jones said about the Sooners in general.

Senior forward Khadeem McGusty tops Oklahoma (15-4, 5-3 Big 12) in rebounds with 6.4 and 2.2 blocks per game, while averaging 7.5 points.

Alabama (13-7, 5-3 SEC) has four players averaging double-digits in scoring with Sexton (18.5), freshman guard John Petty (11.9), sophomore Dazon Ingram (11.1) and junior forward Donta Hall (10.9). However, both Sexton and Hall are coming off injuries (see below).

Game details

  • Where: Coleman Coliseum
  • When: 2:15 p.m. Saturday.

What’s the best way to keep up with the game

Fans have numerous options:

TV: ESPN

Radio: In Tuscaloosa, WFFN 95.3 FM. Otherwise, games can be found on affiliates of the Crimson Tide Sports Network, or on TideTV

Live stats: rolltide.com

Twitter updates: @AlabamaMBB

Rick Hollenberg (play-by-play), Fran Fraschilla (analyst) and Laura Rutledge (sideline) will have the television broadcast, with Chris Stewart (play-by-play) and Bryan Passink (analyst) on radio.

What you should know

• After missing two games Sexton came back from an abdominal injury to play 20 minutes at Ole Miss, but was obviously rusty while shooting 2-for-13 from the field. Hall has also been limited by a wrist injury that makes it hard for him to grip the ball and dribble.

• Oklahoma is coming off an impressive 85-80 home victory against No. 5 Kansas on Tuesday night. Young finished with 26 points and nine assists.

• The Sooners are 10-0 at home but is 2-3 in true road contests, including three straight (at West Virginia, Kansas State and Oklahoma State). However, it also won at Wichita State on Dec. 16, when the Shockers were No. 3.

• Oklahoma leads the all-time series 5-2.

• Alabama is Oklahoma’s second SEC opponent this season, losing to Arkansas in a neutral-site game on Nov. 23, 92-83.

• Alabama will return to SEC play on Wednesday when it hosts Missouri (9 p.m. ET, ESPN2).

The post Alabama basketball vs. Oklahoma in Big 12/SEC Challenge: Game info and preview appeared first on SEC Country.

Christopher Walsh – SEC Country