Alabama’s Mark Sears deserves to be in March Madness MVP conversation thus far

Alabama basketball has made it to the Sweet 16, where they will face the top-seeded North Carolina Tar Heels. One player has led the team through two impressive tournament games and is being praised as a possible March Madness MVP candidate to this point.

Crimson Tide guard Mark Sears has been a team leader all season long and is now viewed as the team’s biggest impact player (subscription required), according to ESPN college basketball analyst John Gasaway.

“If you were picking a most valuable player of the tournament so far, Sears would definitely be in the conversation,” writes Gasaway. “Averaging 28 points over two games is partly a function of Alabama’s fast pace, but Sears has been valuable beyond scoring. When the Crimson Tide were in trouble against Grand Canyon, the senior responded with 12 rebounds, six assists and three steals.”

As a veteran, Sears’s performance on the court has been extremely valuable, but his leadership has also played a large role in the team’s success.

Heading into the 2023-2024 college basketball season, many fans were worried about Alabama’s ability to maintain the competitiveness that it held in recent seasons under Nate Oats. With high roster turnover and a completely new coaching staff, the odds were stacked against the Crimson Tide.

Led by Sears, the team was in contention to win the SEC up until the last few games and they have since been able to adapt to their opponents and be victorious through two rounds of the March Madness Tournament.

As the team prepares to take on North Carolina, it’s expected that the offense will, once again, run through Sears.

“Collectively, Alabama has attacked the paint often enough to post the healthiest tournament free throw rate of any Sweet 16 squad,” writes Gasaway. “The always formidable Crimson Tide offense is in full stride with Sears as the featured scorer.”

Roll Tide Wire will continue to follow Alabama basketball as the NCAA Tournament rolls on.

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Story originally appeared on Roll Tide Wire