Alabama played down to its opponent yet again, this time coming home with an embarrassing loss to an utterly terrible Georgia team.
Stop me if you’ve heard this before, but the other team came out hot from three. The Dawgs hit four of their first eight from deep and led 16-14 with a shade over 12 minutes to play. This didn’t look like another case of low energy from the Tide, Georgia just came out hungry for the home upset and played well. James Rojas was rewarded for his hustle with his first start of the season, and he got plenty of blue collar points as usual. Jaden Shackleford’s hot hand was the story of the half, however. Shack poured in 16 first half points on 5/7 three point shooting, almost singlehandedly staking the Tide to a six point halftime lead.
The second half was an ugly affair as Georgia successfully slowed the pace. The Tide couldn’t get into any sort of offensive rhythm. and with just over two minutes to play found themselves trailing 72-68 against a Georgia team looking for its first SEC win. Georgia made its foul shots down the stretch to clinch the win.
The ship has likely sailed on the idea that this team is ever going to play quality defense for any meaningful stretch this season. They are flat out terrible on that end of the floor, which puts immense pressure on an offense that is struggling to make shots. They sent the Dawgs to the line 30 times and Georgia made 24, which was the difference in the game. Alabama is capable of much more on the offensive end, and they are going to have to show it if they plan on navigating the next three games without getting smacked around. They sure aren’t going to lock anyone up.
To make matters worse, Darius Miles left the game with a knee injury and it didn’t sound promising. Juwan Gary is still out with a facial contusion, and Oats sorely misses him as one of very few on this team who can play some defense and score the ball. At this point, we can only hope that the team really does have a bad habit of letting up against weaker opponents. They won’t have to worry about that for a while. Hope for the best.