5. Arkansas State Red Wolves (December 21, Huntsville):
The Crimson Tide will play their second, and final, pseudo-home game of the season a few days before Christmas in Huntsville against Arkansas State. The Red Wolves were not a great team last season and in a vacuum, this would appear to be a relatively easy game for Alabama. However, it makes this list for two reasons, as it has the potential to be closer than one might assume.
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First of all, this game will not be in Tuscaloosa, and without the comfort of their usual arena, it’s possible that the Tide could feel uncomfortable and tight at the start of the game. It isn’t clear how many fans should be expected at a game four days before Christmas in a different city, but if enough fans show up this could be a much more palatable experience for the Tide.
Secondly, Alabama had an unfortunate habit of losing important games in which they were favored last season, dropping important contests to Mississippi State and Arkansas in late February and March. It will be encouraging if the Crimson Tide can play to their full potential and easily beat Arkansas State away from home, and doing so would be another step in the right direction for this program.
Alabama basketball season is quickly approaching. Buckle up. It’s going to be a fun ride.