Alabama’s men’s basketball season is set to officially tip-off on Tuesday, as the Crimson Tide will take on Louisiana Tech at 8 p.m. CT. But before that, we need to review some things about last year and set reasonable expectations for the upcoming season of Crimson Tide basketball.
Last year was a magical year if you’re an Alabama basketball fan. A 26-7 win-loss record at the end is good enough on its own, if we’re being honest. The initial expectations of Nate Oats in his first contract term were far exceeded by the performance on and off the court by the staff and players.
The Crimson Tide won its first SEC regular-season title since 2002, but championships were earned in the regular season and the tournament, earning their first win in that competition since 1992.
Adding to that success, Alabama would go on to advance to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament, marking its best finish in the tourney since 2002.
Now, after last season’s colossal success, what are the reasonable expectations of a Crimson Tide hoops fan this time out?
What are my expectations?
This team has all the makings to be better than the 2020-21 team. While replacing guys like Herb Jones, Josh Primo and John Petty isn’t an easy job, I believe it’s been done as good as it could’ve been.
Charles Bediako is a big dude, standing at 7-0 and offering a 7-foot-2 wingspan. He will be a big piece of the Tide puzzle throughout the year.
If I could ask for the perfect replacement for Joshua Primo, I’d ask for J.D. Davison. And my call would’ve been answered upon his signing.
Davison is a 6-3, 195-pound guard from Letohatchee, Ala. He was the twelfth-ranked player in 247Sports’ composite ranking and the third-best point guard. He will be a big influence as a scorer and a passer when running the court with the Crimson Tide.
Noah Gurley and Nimari Burnett were brought in as transfers from Furman and Texas Tech, respectively. Both were added to play a significant role, but unfortunately, Burnett will not be available this year after suffering a season-ending injury. Gurley will be a solid option on the court and should look to play several minutes per game.
So, with the new guys brought in to go along with Jaden Shackelford and Jahvon Quinerly, this team has a ton of talent that’s poised to have a better showing than 2020-21. My expectations would be met with another 23-plus win season, paired with either the SEC regular-season title or the SEC Tournament title.
A similar run through the NCAA Tournament would be fantastic, but I’d hope to go even further this time around. All of the pieces are there for this to be a great team, even better than last season’s. Reasonably expect at least two wins during March Madness.
I’ll be watching with just as much hope and love as the rest of you will be.
Alabama will take on Lousiana Tech on Tuesday at 8 p.m. CT. The game can be viewed on SEC Network. You can also keep up with us at RTW for live game updates.
Stay tuned to Roll Tide Wire for extensive coverage of Alabama Men’s Basketball.