June 13, 2024

This past weekend, the Tennessee Vols hammered the Alabama Crimson Tide basketball team 91-71 in Knoxville, handing the team its first conference defeat. With the loss, Alabama’s six-game winning streak came to an end, and they were tied for first position in the league standings after dropping to second. The Crimson Tide has lost on the road in Knoxville before, and head coach Nate Oats has not only seen the Tide get destroyed on the road before.

Tennessee Vols vs Alabama Crimson Tide Preview/Prediction | Hendon Hooker,  Bryce Young, Josh Heupel - YouTube

The Crimson Tide lost 24 points on the road to the Oklahoma Sooners in 2022–2023, a team that was not selected to the NCAA Tournament. Alabama lost by nine points in Knoxville less than a month later, but the Crimson Tide significantly improved following both defeats.

The Oklahoma loss was followed by a 57-point home triumph over Vanderbilt, while the Tennessee loss was followed by a 49-point home victory over Georgia. The Alabama basketball team of 2022–2023 went on to win both the regular season and tournament titles in the Southeastern Conference and was awarded a top seed in the NCAA Tournament. Since ESPN’s Joe Lunardi presently has the Tide as a No. 5 seed in the NCAA Tournament, this year’s squad’s spot is all but guaranteed. However, how far apart from the program’s main objectives is the Alabama team of 2023–24?

Has the nine new scholarship players on this year’s roster possessed the same mental toughness to withstand Tennessee’s gut punch and compete successfully against the best team in the SEC?

“On Monday and Tuesday, we practiced twice with some of the players. On Monday, I felt like several of them answered correctly. I felt that today, a greater number of them gave appropriate responses. That was our point. We were defeated by – which game, Georgia, came first, Tennessee or Georgia? The Vanderbilt game came right after the Oklahoma game. Yes, we handled those defeats last year fairly well,” Oats remarked on Tuesday. “Auburn is not the Vanderbilt or Georgia of the previous season.

They currently have the greatest team in our league. So, I told our men that in order to achieve a win, we’re going to need to put in the same kind of effort that we did against Vanderbilt and Georgia following our defeats that season. We won’t destroy these guys the way we did. You’re right—we did react effectively the previous year. Some of these individuals seem to know what it takes to be competitive in this league, while others still seem to be figuring things out. Oats was eager to highlight the distinctions between the Auburn club that will play Georgia and Vanderbilt on Wednesday and the teams that served as rebound opponents in the previous season.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *