Alabama Basketball: Crimson Tide faces SEC road test Wednesday


Every season there are debates about how good SEC basketball is from top to bottom. There is never any question about the SEC having some strong teams. Under Nate Oats, Alabama Basketball has been one of them.

Also every season there are very good SEC teams that incur unexpected road losses. Historically, some of the SEC’s best teams lose SEC road games. The 1994 National Champions and one of college basketball’s best-ever teams, the Arkansas Razorbacks were 31-3 on the season. Two of the losses were SEC road games. Florida won back-to-back National Championships in 2006 and 2007. The Gators lost 11 games in those two seasons and seven of the losses were SEC road games.

The 26-6, 2020-21, Alabama Basketball team had a tremendous 16-2 SEC record. Both SEC losses were on the road, one to a Missouri team that followed its home win with five losses in seven games.

Last season the Crimson Tide would have earned a higher seed in the NCAA Tournament had it not lost to Missouri and Georgia, in road games the Tide was expected to win. The Crimson Tide finished last season with six, SEC road losses.

Alabama Basketball and the SEC Road

Why all the harping about how tough it is to win SEC road games? Because, some of the players on the young, 2022-23 Alabama Crimson Tide have no idea what to expect. Alabama has a resume-enhancing, away game win this season. Beating Houston in their pressure-cooker arena was impressive. The advantage Alabama had in that game is it knew the contest was a big challenge. They were mentally prepared to fight.

On Wednesday night in Starkville, the young Tide may not be mentally prepared. The Bulldogs are 11-1, having lost their last game to Drake. The Drake Bulldogs are 10-3 and better than some Alabama basketball fans may realize.

Mississippi State will be looking to bounce back. Even though Alabama is a slight favorite, the game could go either way. In the SEC, road teams are often perplexed with how games are officiated. Maybe it is as simple as unintentionally, referees are influenced by home crowds. Whatever it is, road teams can be thrown off by calls. That is especially true for inexperienced players on road teams.

Note: Team records in this post were provided by Sports Reference.

Next. More info on Mississippi State. dark

In the Crimson Tide’s first seven SEC games, four are on the road. In addition to the game in Starkville, Alabama will travel to Arkansas, Vanderbilt and Missouri, along with home games against Ole Miss, Kentucky and LSU.