Alabama Basketball: Will the inconsistent Tide rise in March?

Nas Sec Lsu Ala 051
Nas Sec Lsu Ala 051 /

The Alabama basketball team has had a rollercoaster of a season. At its peak, it’s one of the best teams in the nation. It has shown this with numerous impressive wins, including victories over projected No. 1 seeds Gonzaga and Baylor. Also on its resume are a gritty win over Houston (before the Cougars were gutted by injuries), a 32-point win over an NCAA tournament team in Miami, and tough wins against high-level SEC teams in Arkansas and Tennessee.

The other side of the Crimson Tide’s resume, however, tells a different story. The team has suffered losses to Davidson and Iona, two teams that are very good but play in mid-major conferences, and should not be able to match up with Alabama physically. The Tide has also dropped a game to a struggling Memphis squad, and two more to SEC bottom feeders Missouri and Mississippi State. It has a baffling loss to Georgia, one of the worst high-major teams in the nation. In fact, the contest is Georgia’s only SEC win to date. Alabama basketball was also swept by conference foes Kentucky and Auburn. Most recently, it lost a lopsided game to an average-at-best Texas A&M team.

Playing in a conference as tough as the SEC, it was to be expected for Alabama to drop some games occasionally. Even Bama’s non-league schedule was particularly tough; in fact, the Tide haven’t played a quadrant four opponent all season. Any way you slice it, Alabama basketball has played arguably the nation’s toughest schedule, and has beaten several of the country’s elite.

However, the volatility of this team is almost unfathomable. It has continuously played poorly against inferior competition, which is a recipe for disaster for a team that currently projects as a 5-seed.

On the optimistic side, if it can escape the first weekend of the Dance unscathed, Alabama is built to make a run. It is led by one of the best backcourts in the nation, namely, the duo of Jaden Shackelford and Jahvon Quinerly. Senior Keon Ellis and freshman JD Davison bring an electric element to the backcourt. With these guards leading the way, the Crimson Tide are capable of catching fire from the three point line and becoming very difficult to beat.

Next. SEC Standings heading into March. dark

As the regular season winds down, Alabama basketball sits at 19-11 (9-8 SEC) and boasts a laughably contradictory NCAA tournament resume. The Crimson Tide will play one more tough game, on the road against LSU, before gearing up to defend their SEC tournament title. A team that has struggled to find consistency all year will have to find a way to string together multiple wins in the postseason, or its season will be over sooner rather than later.