Alabama Basketball: Nate Oats loads Tide roster with Noah Gurley

John Reed-USA TODAY Sports
John Reed-USA TODAY Sports /

Alabama Basketball has a 2021-22 roster loaded in two ways. The combined returning and new players provide a roster loaded with talent. It is also loaded in roster slots, as in currently too many. Furman transfer forward, Noah Gurley’s decision Sunday evening increased the Crimson Tide roster to 15 scholarship players.

Something’s got to give for the Tide, but it will not be a loss of talent. The Transfer Portal has so changed college basketball, that the traditional signing period is just another part of the roster-building process. Some teams are rebuilding with three or more transfers.

The latest for the Crimson Tide is Noah Gurley. Gurley is a 6-feet-8 forward, best described as a stretch ‘4’ in a five-out scheme. Gurley has been at Furman for four seasons, one being a redshirt year in 2017-18. This past season he averaged 15.4 points and 5.8 rebounds per game. He shot 49.8 percent, including 34.4 percent from outside the arc. He is good at getting to the rim and a better finisher than some of the Tide’s regulars last season.

At 6-feet-8 and 210 pounds, Gurley is not a traditional post player. But he can play at the ‘5’ position if needed and adds to a post presence, a good ability to distribute the ball to teammates. Attacking the rim in transition is one of his strengths. He did not take many threes for Furman, but he has a good stroke.

Gurley’s game has a lot of polish, including strong defense and rim protection. Based on his Furman career, Gurley appears to be an excellent fit for Nate Oats’ system of play.

Gurley had some first-hand knowledge of the Alabama Basketball system having played against the Crimson Tide in the last two seasons. Whether Noah Gurley starts or comes off the bench for the Crimson Tide, he will be a key player in Nate Oats’ rotation next season.

Gurley had eight finalists for his transfer decision. Among them were Auburn (the Tigers lost out to the Tide on another transfer), Miami, Marquette, Tennessee, Florida and San Diego State.

Check out the video below when Gurley had 21 points and eight rebounds against Auburn.

Alabama Basketball Roster Options

Where does the roster room for Gurley come from? Nate Oats has a tough task tweaking the Alabama Basketball roster. Two spots are now needed. Alex Reese, John Petty Jr. and Herbert Jones have finished their Crimson Tide careers. Alabama Basketball fans are concerned Jahvon Quinerly might choose a move to professional basketball. Three guys; James Rojas, Darius Miles and Keon Ambrose-Hylton might opt for a better opportunity in playing time elsewhere.

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Nate Oats has a problem but it is a good problem. However it plays out, the Crimson Tide roster will be loaded next season.