Well, of all the possible outcomes for Alabama’s opening game of the 2023-24 hoops season, I’m not sure many of us predicted the Crimson Tide - who had only three returning scholarship players and lost all three assistant coaches from last season - to pick-up right where the guys left off last year with an absolutely dominant 105-73 win over a quality Morehead State program on Monday night. The offense looked to be in midseason form, breaking triple-digits once again (Nate Oats has almost made that semi-routine - God bless this man) with some lights-out shooting, which included 10/23 from deep and 31/38 from the free throw line. Even more encouraging than the offense though was the overall level of effort and intensity on the defensive end. This team certainly isn’t to the level of the 2023 squad in execution defensively, but the hustle is absolutely already there. This won’t be a rerun of the 2022 team.
What more can we say about Grant Nelson? White man can jump. And hoop.
Nelson and the Tide will try to put on an encore performance tonight against the Indiana State Sycamores, yet another strong mid-major program. The Sycamores won 23 games last season in head coach Josh Schertz’s second year on the job, and they opened up this year with a 30-point blowout win against
a school that definitely exists Saint Mary of the Woods College. Much like the opener for Alabama though, this game is about the Tide. How will this newly-minted group handle the immediate success of this season? Will they be able to bring that same level of effort and execution tonight going up against another overmatched team?
The game tips-off at 7:00 PM CST and can be found again on the SECN+. Alabama is favored by 18 points tonight.