Alabama Basketball: Crimson Tide zooms to lofty AP Poll ranking


In Monday’s AP Poll, Alabama Basketball, coming off its defeat of last week’s No. 1 team,  became the highest-ranked one-loss team in college basketball. The boost was expected with the Crimson Tide vaulting to the No. 4 spot in the rankings.

Above the Crimson Tide in the current AP Poll are No. 1 Purdue, No. 2 Virginia and No. 3 UConn.

Alabama Basketball was the biggest mover among the top 16 teams, in the latest Top 25 rankings. The Crimson Tide went up four spots. At No. 17, Mississippi State, now 9-0, went up six spots.

The last time the Crimson Tide was ranked as high was when Mark Gottfried was the Alabama coach. On Dec. 4, 2006 the Tide was ranked No. 4. In its next game that season, Alabama lost to Notre Dame, beginning a rankings slide that left it unranked in the final three polls of the 2006-2007 season.

It is almost impossible to imagine the history being similarly repeated this season.

Nate Oats has a very good team. Though it is young, the roster is loaded with talent. Beating a not-overrated No. 1 team in Houston, on that team’s home court, will be one of the most impressive wins of this basketball season.

Alabama Basketball and Tough Games

The Tide’s high ranking will not win it any games and three of Alabama’s next four games are ones it could lose. First, on Tuesday night, the Crimson Tide will host Memphis. The Tigers are coming off a nine-point win over Auburn. At 8-2, Memphis had the 26th-highest vote total in the AP Poll. After Penny Hardaway’s talented team, next for the Crimson Tide is Gonzaga in Birmingham on Saturday. The Zags are 7-3 and No. 17 in the current AP Poll.

Gonzaga will be seeking payback for the Tide win in Seattle last season. In the Zags three losses this season, one was by a point to Baylor and another was to the new No. 1 team, Purdue.

After playing Jackson State, the third in the trio of tough games will be Mississippi State in Starkville. The Bulldogs have played only two quality teams in Marquette and Utah, but those neutral court wins are noteworthy. Plus SEC officials, with the Crimson Tide on the SEC road; anything could happen.

Other AP-ranked SEC teams

  • No. 6 – Tennessee Vols (9-1)
  • No. 10 – Arkansas Razorbacks (9-1)
  • No. 13 – Kentucky Wildcats (7-2)
  • No. 19 – Auburn Tigers (8-1)

Complete AP Poll rankings are available here.

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With the four teams above, plus Alabama and Mississippi State, the SEC has six teams ranked in the top 19 teams.