Alabama Basketball: Crimson Tide Frontcourt Preview

Gary Cosby Jr.-USA TODAY Sports
Gary Cosby Jr.-USA TODAY Sports /

Alabama basketball should be a long and athletic group in the frontcourt this season. Perhaps the biggest question is whether or not the Crimson Tide can find some low post scoring to complement its perimeter players.

Sophomore Charles Bediako returns at center after starting 30 games for Alabama as a freshman last season. Bediako is a rim protector and lob threat for the Tide, and should make a big leap as a scorer this year. He will likely be backed by freshman Noah Clowney. A 4-star recruit, the 6’10” Clowney brings length and skill to the frontcourt. He will need to add size and strength before he can be a difference maker down low against SEC competition.

At the four, graduate student Noah Gurley has a leg up on the starting job. The former Furman transfer brings a lot of experience, having started 97 career games, including 14 for Alabama last season. Gurley is a gritty player, and serves as a quality complementary piece in this talented lineup. He will be pushed by junior college transfer Nick Pringle. Pringle played one season at Wofford before testing the JUCO ranks, where he was one of the most sought-after players in the country. He has an SEC-ready body, and the size and athleticism to compete for time at either the four or the five.

Wing Brandon Miller likely has the three spot locked down. Miller is an extremely versatile scorer at 6’8”, and could be one of the best freshmen in college basketball this year.

Brandon Miller began showing off his skill in summer intrasquad scrimmages. In early August, Alabama basketball took a trip to Europe, where it played three games against professional international competition. Miller was dominant during this trip, and led the Tide in scoring in all three games. In a preseason controlled scrimmage loss to TCU, Miller tallied 33 points and snagged nine rebounds to lead the team.

Brandon Miller will carry a heavy scoring load for Alabama Basketball, particularly early in the season before Jahvon Quinerly can return to the lineup. Others will have to play well and give support, but if the preseason is any indication, Miller will be the barometer for this team.

Big guards such as Nimari Burnett, Darius Miles, Dominick Welch, and Rylan Griffen will compete for minutes at the three behind Miller.

Alabama basketball has a balanced roster with a lot of quality, and potential impact, players. A group of savvy guards including Quinerly and Mark Sears, plus Brandon Miller on the wing, make the perimeter game the strength of this team.

Next. Tide still seeking a WR1. dark

The development of Charles Bediako and the other bigs could take this group from being a good SEC team to a top-tier SEC team.