Who: Alabama (3-2) vs. Furman (5-1)
When: 8 pm CT, Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2020.
Where: Coleman Coliseum; Tuscaloosa, AL.
Radio: Crimson Tide Sports Network (play-by-play: Chris Stewart; analyst: Bryan Passink)
On Tuesday night Alabama (3-2) will look to bounce back from an 8 point loss to Clemson, who is now ranked inside the top 25. A poor shooting performance, especially from 3, was never going to be good enough against a team of that caliber. The Furman Paladins come in at 5-1 with their only loss being by 5 against a good Cincinnati team. As Alabama has shown through the first 5 games, if the Tide wants to win this game it all comes down to how well they shoot from 3. On the year, the Tide are shooting 29.1% from 3 which ranks at 241st in the country (according to TeamRankings). That has to significantly improve starting tonight if they are going to pick up quality wins before SEC play begins. The good news is Oats wants his guys to take any open shots that they can get (they average 30 threes per game). There will be plenty of opportunities from 3 throughout each game which presents a chance to improve over time. Furman comes into this game with a solid team on both sides of the ball. On offense, they shoot 48.2% (#41 in the country) overall and 36.9% from 3 (#73). They shoot almost as many 3’s as Alabama does per game and they make more of them. Defensively they only allow 66 PPG and hold opponents to 29.8% from 3. That favors the Paladins in this matchup. An area that favors Alabama is rebounding. The Tide come in ranked no. 112 in Offensive RPG compared to Furman at no. 264. Alabama ranks about 10 spots ahead in defensive RPG as well.
Furman Players to Watch:
G Mike Bothwell (17.7 PPG, 4.2 APG, 5 RPG)
F Noah Gurley (13.8 PPG, 2 APG, 5.3 RPG)
G Alex Hunter (9.8 PPG, 3.8 APG, 3.5 RPG)
F Garrett Hien (5.7 PPG, 1.3 APG, 3.2 RPG)
F Jalen Slawson (10.7 PPG, 3.5 APG, 5.8 RPG)
F Clay Mounce (15.8 PPG, 1.8 APG, 5.7 RPG)
Alabama must improve offensively from last game if they want to beat a solid Furman team in Coleman Coliseum. Most of the time this Alabama team will not shoot that poorly in back to back games, so do not expect a poor shooting performance tonight. John Petty will lead the way with a big game at home followed by Jahvon Quinerly and Herbert Jones who will also score in double digits. The key will be out-rebounding this team and taking smart shots, especially from 3.
For more Alabama hoops coverage, be sure to follow Crimson Crossover on all social media platforms: