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Re: Men's Basketball Begins SEC Play vs. Texas A&M Tonight 8 p.m.
Written by Jamos
Comments: 25
Posted under: The Quad
Bama did what they needed to do tonight, beat Texas A&M in a convincing manor. The Aggies came in tonight with a 9-3 record and a good overall team national rating which meant Bama had something to gain with the convincing win.

The game started at a slow pace and stayed that way for most of the first half and as usual, Bama didn't play well with the slow pace of the game. The second half was a whole different story again for Bama as they kicked their energy level in gear and picked up the tempo of the game and it was all over for the Aggies. This team is learning about themselves and what the tempo of the game means to them and now you can add another weapon into the fast tempo factor, Retin Obasohan. Having been crippled all season from an off season ankle surgery, he is now playing at full speed and what a difference he can make for this team. Bama again spread the offense and defense results around as to the stats and this is just what CAG is looking for, a team chemistry that involves all of the players and not just a couple of them.

I am very impressed with the improvement of the team since the start of the season as they seem to improve with each game and tonight they improved on what I had complained about the last two games, shooting free throws. I hope they will keep working on that aspect of their game because it may win them some of those close games down the road.

Now it's time to hit the road for a game and that makes all of us fans a little nervous. They will play Tennessee up there and if Bama can steal a win there, this could do wonders for them as far as winning some games on the road this year. It won't be easy as usual but I like their chances Saturday. Kentucky follows the Tennessee game at Coleman and beating Tennessee could possible be a big game changer for the Tide against the Wildcats. Bama will need anything they can get, momentum wise, if they are to beat Kentucky. We all know about ifs and buts and the win tonight has gotten me all pumped for a big road win and hopefully that will happen

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Where does the problem lie with Bama's horrible finish?
Written by Jamos
Comments: 17
Posted under: The Quad
After the spanking that Bama got in the Sugar Bowl, I couldn't help but point a few fingers as to what I thought was the major reason(s) for the loss. There were many but I'm just going to just use the defense and the offense as the two categories to sum it up.

Bama started the season with a new and untested quarterback and a new OC. In most people's minds, the offense would be a total flop this year because of that. But that wasn't the case at all as Lane Kiffen was able to coach up Blake Sims to be a very respectable QB. This is not saying he was an All-American but he had some very good stats for the year. CLK was doing a very good job as the new OC and the offense had really looked pretty good except for the Ole Miss and Arkansas games. As the second half of the season came, the offense was putting up some big numbers and everybody thought that all is well, another National Championship is just down the road.

Now we move over to the defense. Bama lost some big time players to the Pros last season but there seemed to be a lot of experience coming back. In the first half of the season, the defense seemed to be where everyone thought they would be, good but not great. They were giving up a few big plays which most Bama fans aren't used to seeing. The worst big play that was being seen was the completion rate of the long pass against the defense. I for one thought this was just something that could be corrected easily and it would be business as usual in the games to come. Injuries are something that can cripple a team but Bama seemed to have enough depth though to overcome that problem. Bama seemed to be losing at least two starters a game as the season progressed but still they were hanging in there even though they were still giving up the long pass for big gainers or touchdowns.

Then came November with the Iron Bowl against Auburn. We all remember the number of yards the defense gave up against the Tigers in last year's game, rushing and passing. It was something tha Bama fans aren't used to seeing. After losing that game, I think the Bama Nation thought it was just a fluke and they just surprised Alabama and we would show them a thing or two in this years game. Well, they showed us a thing or two in this year's game, it wasn't a fluke as they put up big numbers again on our proud defense. Then came Missouri which most people thought didn't have a prayer against Bama. Again, Missouri put up some big numbers on our proud defense but Bama managed to beat both Auburn and Missouri but it wasn't easy.

Now we get down to the biggest game of the season, Ohio State and Urban Meyer. There is plenty of hatred for each other on both sides and Bama wanted to put another pasting on a Big Ten team. As we had watched all season of Bama giving up the big plays, passing, everyone thought this problem would be corrected and the Bama defense would look like the Bama of old. Wrong, Ohio State not only made the long passes but the Bama defense gave up over 200 yards of rushing to a running back, that is something that is unheard of in Bama football. I'm sure this caused Bear to roll over in his grave.

Now the question is, is the offense the big problem or is it the defense? Bama had a very nice lead in this game, 21-6 only to give it up and lose very badly. I know the offense didn't look the greatest there at the end but was that the real problem Houston, we have a problem

Game notes: OSU vs Bama
Written by hscoach
Comments: 9
Posted under: The Quad
First:   Congrats to Bama on a good year.  I know this isnít how we all wanted it to end, but it did.  These notes will be short since I canít watch the game again at this point.

Offense:  The offense was a Jekyll and Hyde offense.  At times they looked great, but then in crucial times they could not get a 3rd and 2.  They failed to convert on third down most of the night when they had less than 4 yards to go most of the time.  I have Bama for only 9 negative plays, but they were huge.  There were 3 tackles for losses, 3 sacks, and 3 interceptions, one which was returned for a TD and the other to end the game.  The one that was returned for the TD was great film work by OSU.  I donít know if it was an automatic on that formation or called but they knew exactly where Bama was going with the ball on 3rd and 5.  They had four 3 and outs and most were in the first half.   There was a 1 and out when Bama got the turnover and then threw the int in the red zone.  Bama had 5 running plays for over 10 yards and 6 pass plays for over 10 yards.  The main problem was they could not sustain a drive early in the game.  They had 4 trips in the red zone and scored 4 touchdowns and 1 touchdown was scored from outside the red zone.  I will say I thought Bama could have had better clock management in the end.  By clocking the ball a couple of times I thought they could have run at least 2 more plays. 

QB:  Again a tale of two QBís.  He played well at times and didnít at others.  At times I thought he was looking at the pass rush instead of downfield.  With this being said, I want to congratulate Blake on a great season.  Many of us didnít think he would be the starting QB this year and if he was didnít think they would have a chance to get to the NC playoffs.

RB:    They ran hard when given the chance.  The problem was they were hit quickly on the short 3rd down runs.

REC:  The biggest problem with the recís was a drop ball by DW that would have kept the drive alive.  If he makes this catch, then the ball does not go over to OSU allowing them to go down and score and make it a 21-20 game right before half.    They also were not allowed to get deep very often.

OL:   Again, blocked well on some plays missed blocks on crucial plays.  One the first TD run the blocking was outstanding, but then they couldnít come back and get a 3rd and 2.    I know BV whiffed on one block take cause a tackle for loss which led to a punt. 

Defense:  This was a game of big plays given up by the defense.  Here is the oddest part of the game.  Bama had 7 tackles for losses, 4 sacks, a fumble recovery, and an interception for negative plays.  They had 4 three and outs and 1 one and out.  Most of these stops came in the last of the 3rd and 4th quarter which gave Bama an opportunity to come back and put the game away.  They had at least 9 runs for 10+ yards and 9 pass plays for 10+ yards.  OSU was 10 for 18 on 3rd down conversions most of which were 8+ yards.   This inability to get off the field was a killer for Bama.  There were also many missed tackles.  I will say OSU backs ran hard and there were very few times when they didnít fall forward to complete a run.  One positive was Bamaís red zone D kept them in the game early.

DL:  At times good at times it looked like they played too high and didnít get off blocks.  Also, on their pass rush they went too far up the field allowing a wide escape route for the QB to scramble with success. 

LB:  Many times they would have to fight off linemen getting to the second level on them.

DB:  Cyrus Jones played a pretty good game.  Eddie Jackson gave up another big ball; however he did make some plays.  It did look like Washington took a bad angle on one deep ball.  OSU had great success passing the ball deep in the middle of the field when Bama had a 2 safety look. 

Penalties: The worse penalty of the night for Bama was when they had a big hit on a short kickoff return and taunted the player which gave them a lot better field position.  I am not sure on the EJ pass interference because it looked as if the ball was tipped.

Special teams:   All kicks were good. Scott is a stud.   AG looked a lot better with form and the height of his kicks.

Finally:   Bama had a good year and deserve a lot of credit.  The bad part, and some of you are not going to like to hear this, is maybe the SEC was not as good as we thought it was.  The top 4 SEC west teams lost their bowl games.  What was supposed  to be the strength, defense, left a lot to be desired. 

Please feel free to comment.

Good Luck and Roll Tide Roll 
15 and counting

Re: Alabama basketball takes on North Florida tonight 6 p.m.
Written by Jamos
Comments: 29
Posted under: The Quad
It was a fun night in Coleman tonight and the basketball game was a good dose of medicine to help me get over the Sugar Bowl hangover from last night. The name North Florida doesn't ring a bell with most basketball fans around here but any more you can't go by the team's name because some of these no name schools have pretty good basketball teams. North Florida isn't a Kentucky by no means but they do have a decent team with a win over Purdue at Purdue last month. They slowed the game down the first half and gave Bama all they wanted but the second half was a totally different story.

Bama gets another win and it served some good purposes as Bama prepped for their conference season opener against Texas A&M January 6th. After the sluggish first half, Bama picked up the tempo of the game and that was all that they needed. It's a fact that Bama is a much better team when the tempo is fast paced and the stats and score reflected this. Kessens is getting better with each game as he had another star of the game performance tonight with his second double-double of the season, 18 points and 12 rebounds. Bama had 3 other players to hit double figures in scoring, Randolph had 13, Cooper 11, and Norris had 10. If there is one thing that Kessens needs to work on, it is his getting too many silly unnecessary fouls. This is costing him some valuable minutes of playing time.

I can see Bama doing more and more toward becoming a pretty good team since the season started and it's important that they carry this momentum into the conference season and win some games early. They are not a good team yet but they are working and playing hard to get there and that is all you can ask of them. When the season started, Levi Randolph was was clearly the leader of this team but now there seems to be more of the players trying to step into that leadership role which shows me that the team is maturing and that can only make CAG smile.

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Re: Bama Basketball Vs UCLA today @ 5:30 p.m. ESPNU
Written by Jamos
Comments: 35
Posted under: The Quad
I said before the game that I felt this was a must win game for Bama and I felt it wouldn't come easy for them and it didn't. From the opening tip off, the play was very physical and UCLA looked to be the bigger, stronger team so I was hoping our shooting would be on tonight. Thank goodness UCLA was colder than Bama the first half and Bama was able to build a lead going into halftime. The second half was two different games, it was all UCLA the first ten minutes and then Bama found some life the second ten minutes and was able to hang on for the win. As I have stated numerous times of late, Bama's lack of good free throw shooting made this game closer than it should have been at the end even though it was Randolph's free throws that sealed the win. As far as Bama's field goal shooting, UCLA had a lot to do with their poor shooting. I though UCLA played an excellent defensive game as they made Bama earn every shot from the field and UCLA rebounded well also.

If there is one part of Bama's game that I can see big improvement in, it's the hustle and hard play of the players and this was the part of the game that won it for them tonight. They were flying all over the floor after loose balls and crashing bodies underneath the goal for rebounds and this is something that this team hasn't had all season. When you can't make the outside shots or the free throws you have to find a way to affect the other team and give yourself a chance for a win and that is to play hard and hope for some offense off of it. This is a sign of the team growing up a little and learning how to win the hard way, something Bama hasn't been able to do in two years. There will be games down the road where Bama will have the hot hand shooting and it's easier to win those but there are more games down the road also where playing hard and ugly will be the only way to win. I like the attitude of this team, it's something CAG hasn't seen in three years.

Bama plays North Florida this Friday to end their non-conference play and I have to think that the team is going into conference play in much better shape than we have seen in past years. I would like to think they could win them all but we all know better than that, this team isn't Kentucky. I'm still not sold on the team when they are playing on the road but who knows, with the mental toughness they are and have been playing with of late, they might have a good conference road season and that could mean going to the Big Dance after all.

Re: Men's Basketball Begins Five-Game Homestand Against Stillman tonight at 6pm
Written by Jamos
Comments: 22
Posted under: The Quad
Tonight's game was no more than a good scrimmage for the team and I think it was what the team needed to get the Wichita State game out of their minds. It was fast paced which usually means there is a lot of sloppy play but it was entertaining. Tarrant and Cooper did not play, for whatever reason, but I think everyone else that could play did so. I thought Jimmie Taylor started to exert himself, as he did in the Wichita State game, in the second half of the game. I wish he could start the game being a big part of the offense because when he does that, he seems to rebound on both ends of the court much better which is something the team is struggling with. There were no super stars tonight but just some good tough playing on both ends of the court that can look very sloppy at times.

Bama will play Appalachian State this Sunday and they should provide Bama with a bigger challenge than Stillman College did and I think it is a good tune up for UCLA who comes to town the next Sunday. UCLA will be a must win game for Bama.

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Re: Alabama BB vs Tennessee Tech
Written by Jamos
Comments: 23
Posted under: The Quad
Watching the first half of the game last night was like watching a street fight. Bama came out mentally dead and Tenn Tech came out full of energy and the half time stats indicated that. I was proud of the team in the second half as they chiseled away at Tech and finally wore them down the last ten minutes of the game. This team is so different from last years team in that CAG has a bench to go to this year and that was the difference in the game last night. Bama won the game with sheer determination and not by finess as missed free throws, something that Bama had done well this year, kept Tech in the game until the very end of the game.

Bama had one injury last night that they didn't need. Ricky Tarrant left the game hobbling on his left leg and at first I thought it was a knee but CAG said it was some leg cramps and hopefully he is right. When Bama come out for their pregame warm ups, I saw Tarrant running awkwardly onto the court with a limp and immediately thought he must have suffered an injury in the last game or in practice this week. He seemed to loosen up in the warm ups and I never thought anymore about it until he started grabbing his left leg on the offensive end of the court in the second half and then was replaced at the first whistle. He immediately went to the team doc and never returned.

Bama will need to get their A game ready for their game against Wichita State, at Wichita State, this Tuesday night. They can't come out against them as they did Tenn Tech last night or it will be a very ugly game for them. I blame most of their problems last night as mental mistakes as they never really seemed to get in any type of a rhythm. Levi Randolph had his worst game of the season on both ends of the court last night but that doesn't mean he wasn't trying because he was and the same for the other players. It was just one of those nights that they had to reach back and find a different way to win and that I think will help the team in other games down the road. As they say in sports, it's not always about how you win but that you do win.

Game notes: Bama vs Missouri
Written by hscoach
Comments: 23
Posted under: The Quad
First:   Congrats to Bama player and coaches on winning the SEC Championship.  This is their next step to winning a National Championship.

Offense:  The offense was consistent all day.  There were a couple of drives, the 2nd and 3rd, that had some problems, but they overcame and finished off the game.  Bama had 7 negative plays in the game.  Three of these were tackles for losses, 1 was a sack, and they had 3 fumbles which they didnít lose.  The offense only had 1 three and out all game.  I had Bama for 7 runs of 10+ yards and 8 passes for 10+ yards.   This is not the only balance they had.  They had 504 yards of total offense, 262 passing and 242 rushing.   If I heard the announcers correct, I thought they said Missouri had not given up over 400 total yards in a game all year.  In the red zone Bama was 3 for 3 scoring touchdowns.  They also scored 3 from outside the red zone.  They did leave 3 points on the field with the missed field goal.  This was also, in my opinion, the best game utilizing all weapons.  Bama had 5 different rec making catches in the game and they used AC as a decoy to score on the deep ball.

QB:  Sims had a great game.   He ended up 23/27 for 262 yards and he was pretty accurate on most of his throws.  But what was best was his decision making the whole game.  The first example was when he came off Cooper to hit Jones on a route where the LB jumped in the throwing lane.  He was a drop and an overthrow away from being 25/27.  There were a couple of plays where there was some miscommunication and it caused a fumble and a tackle for loss.  He did a good job keeping his eyes downfield knowing the strength of Missouriís defense was their pass rush.  Also, his leadership came out when, and I donít know what was happening, he was getting on Leon Brown just after Bama scored their 3rd TD.  I guess his biggest mistake was running with the ball out on the 17 yard scramble.

RB:  They ran hard.  They had more success running to the edge than they did up the middle.  Henry ended up with 141 yards rushing.  At one point he had 13 rushed for 52 yards which means he had 89 yards on his next 7 carries.  TJY had some good runs.  There was one where I thought his leg gave away on a cut, but he hit the heel of the blocker which put him off balance.  On another play it did look like his ankle gave away when he went to make a cut.  JF had another good game blocking, but did miss a couple on DB on the wide rec screen. 

REC:  This is what I expected all year.  There were big catches made by White, Howard, and Jones which went along with the numerous catches Cooper had.  At times they blocked outstanding, but there were a couple that if they were made would have turned into huge gains. 

OL:   I thought they played pretty well against a tough front.  They did have a couple of mistakes.  There were a couple of times when CR didnít move his feet well enough to get the block on the quick defensive end.  Also, AK didnít take a good enough step to stop the defensive lineman when the center was pulling which resulted in a tackle for loss.  I donít know how many sacks this team was averaging per game, but they got 1.

Defense:  The defense played a pretty good game.  They had 6 tackles for loss and what I called 1 sack.  They also forced a fumble and recovered it.  They forced Missouri into 4 three and outs two of which started off the game.  They only gave up 1 run for 10+ yards.  The defense did give up 9 pass plays for 10+ yards, but most of them were in the 10-12 yard range.  Missouri had 313 total yards of offense.  They had 41 yards rushing and 272 passing.  Most of their yards came on scramble plays where they got 168 yards.  Bama allowed the QB to break contain and get the pass of several time and 4 of them hurt.  This was the only thing that kept their scoring drives alive.  Again the red zone d was outstanding.  They did give up a touchdown on a pick play, however Missouri ran it properly.

DL:  I probably donít spend enough time on these guys.  They have played, and played, extremely well all year.  The good thing is it is not just one of them it is different people on each play.  These guys are making tackles on the sidelines and downfield if anyone gets that far.  They are why Missouri ran the ball 23 times for only 41 yards, a 1.8 yard per gain average. The biggest problem was allowing the Missouri QB to use that spin move and break contain leading to the big plays. 

LB:  They played extremely well.  Again, too me, this was DePriest game to shine.  He was all over the place.  If he wasnít making the play he was doing the job to force the ball to someone else where they could make the play.
DB:  Honestly, I thought they played pretty well.  They did give up the 4 big passes, but you canít expect them to cover for that extended amount of time.  I also, thought on a couple of those plays the Missouri rec got away with a push off. 

Penalties: Bama had two penalties that only 1 hurt.  Bama had good field position and ran the play where they flip the ball to Cooper and DW was not set long enough for the play.  This help lead to one of Bamaís 3 and outs.  They also wasted good field position here.  The second was a false start and Bama went on to score the TD.

Special teams:   There were 2 special team problems.  One was a missed field goal which took 3 points off the board.  The second was a bad snap which JK Scott made a play and go the punt off.  I was wondering did anyone else think that the Missouri punter had his knee down when he got a bad snap?  It was hard to tell from the angle they showed.

Finally:   It is down to win and keep on playing and it looks like Bama gets Urban.  Hopefully, Saban will send him into retirement again.

Please feel free to comment.

Good Luck and Roll Tide Roll 
15 and counting

Re: Alabama Basketball BEATS South Florida 82-71
Written by Jamos
Comments: 32
Posted under: The Quad
Good analysis pmull.

This team is their best team since Green and Mitchell were on the team. What I like most about the team is the unselfishness between the players. I don't see any player wanting to be the hero of sort or do I see any of the players relinquishing open shots to get the ball to another player being afraid of their own shot. This to me has made it a lot tougher on their opponents defense. Last year they would just double team Releford and no one else wanted to take the shot.

I also like the determination and the desire to win that I have seen in the games so far. They don't seem to be intimidated by the play of their opponents and want to actually instill some intimidation of their own on their opponents with their reckless offense and defense. We don't see the team passing the ball around the perimeter hoping for an open shot as we saw in the past years, these young men are taking the open shot and now seem to understand more about rebounding their own shots as well as rebounding much better on the defensive end of the court.

The other big improvement that I have seen is the their free throw shooting. They deserve a big kudos for this improvement. Up to this point in the season I now wish for the opponent to put us at the free throw line for Bama has been making them pay.

The big question is how can this team show such an improvement over the past three years because there were some highly rated players on those teams as well. It could be the changes that CAG made on the coaching staff in the off season or it could be he has recruited some players that understand what team play is, I want to think most of it is the players that he has recruited, for they they seem to love to play basketball, very unselfish, and aren't too worried about reading their names in the paper.

Saturday night is a big game and again they will be tested away from home which seems to be their biggest problem over the last three years. If they can win Saturday night, I think some people might start giving the team more notice and I think a win on the road at their opponents gym is what this team needs most, nothing like a character builder. RTR!!  

Re: Alabama Basketball BEATS South Florida 82-71
Written by pmull
Comments: 32
Posted under: The Quad
Alabama took care of business last night and beat a team we should beat when playing at home. USF is a quality team. They beat us in Tampa last year. Their RPI is currently 108.

We are a fun team to watch. We are playing well, scoring a lot of points and the players appear to be having fun. This years team seems to have a chemistry that has been missing in our program. We also are getting better each game. CAG has this team playing as a team. 

We had another good offensive game scoring 82 points. Four players were in double figures and eight different players scored. Cooper had 20 to lead the team. Kessens is getting better each game. He had 89 points and 8 rebounds. He gets his points where we need them the most... right under the basket. We are passing the ball, driving the lane, hitting outside shots and making the defense cover every player all over the court. That opens things up for easy baskets. Teams can not play a tight collapsing zone like they have done in the past.

My concern coming into the year was rebounding. So far we are exceeding my expectations. We had 38 rebs (15 off) to their 34 (9 off). That does not tell the entire story. We shot 88 shots to their 68 which gives them 20 more rebounding opportunities.

We were 20-25 (80%) from the free throw line. We are shooting over 80% from the line on the year. That is the best % in the NCAA.

We are not as good on the defensive end as we have been in the past. I hope that improves but I am willing to give up some defense to gain some offense.

We play Xavier Saturday on the road. That will be our first road game playing on the opponent's home floor. They are 5-2 on the year but 4-0 at home. Their current RPI is 112. This is a game we need to win.

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