Alabama Basketball: Mark Sears continues to receive postseason honors

Florida v Alabama
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Alabama senior guard Mark Sears has been one of the best players in the country all season, but has largely flown under the radar in terms of hype. Sears has been a consistent performer all season long and is averaging over 21 points per game. This is the most by any Alabama player under Nate Oats, including NBA Draft lottery picks like Kira Lewis Jr. and Brandon Miller.

On Tuesday, Mark Sears got his well-deserved flowers. He was named AP first team All-SEC and was named a second-team All-American by Sporting News for his performance in the 2023-24 regular season.

In addition to his 21.1 points per game (2nd SEC, T-14th nationally), Sears contributed 4.1 assists and 4.0 rebounds per game while serving as the engine of the Alabama offense. The senior posted remarkably efficient shooting splits, hitting on 50.6 percent from the field, over 44 percent from three-point range, and north of 86 percent from the free throw line, all on high volume.

As a 6’1” guard, Sears’ field goal percentage might be the most impressive aspect of his stat sheet. On the Alabama team, only centers Nick Pringle and Mo Wague (who essentially only attempt shots right at the rim) finished the regular season with better shooting percentages than Sears. 

Mark Sears worked throughout the 2023 offseason to become a more complete player, and has been one of the most well-rounded guards in college hoops as a result. He has virtually been an extension of the coaching staff on the floor, and has been a playmaker on both ends of the court. In addition to leading the team in scoring, he has posted team-highs of 1.7 steals and 32.8 minutes per game. 

Sears was heavily in contention for SEC Player of the Year, and was only outdone by an outstanding campaign from Tennessee’s Dalton Knecht. It took a 40-point effort in the regular season finale for Knecht to edge out Sears for the SEC scoring title.

Over the past week, Sears was also named a finalist for both the Bob Cousy Award as the nation’s top point guard, as well as the Wooden Award for National Player of the Year.

Perhaps Sears hasn’t gotten as much media attention because he is not the obvious NBA prospect that Brandon Miller was, or maybe it’s because Alabama Basketball has had some disappointing moments as a team. But Mark Sears has had one of the best individual seasons in Bama Hoops history in 2023-24, and that should not go ignored or unappreciated.