Alabama Crimson Tide Hoops SEC seeding and Big Dance expectations

With three games left in the Alabama Crimson Tide's regular season, what Bama fans can expect from the SEC Tournament and the NCAA Tournament
Andrew Nelles / The Tennessean / USA

Alabama Basketball heads into Saturday's home contest against Tennessee poised for a big win. Beating the Vols would make the Crimson Tide a heavy favorite for the SEC regular Season title. A win over highly ranked Tennessee would also bolster the Tide's chances for an NCAA Tournament 2-seed.

Alabama fans should have high expectations for the next month of basketball. Those expectations can include two SEC championships, plus advancement to the Elite Eight of the Big Dance. And then moving into April for what might be the farthest Alabama Basketball has ever advanced in the NCAA Tournament.

Alabama Basketball and the SEC Tournament

The Crimson Tide and the Tennessee Vols lead the SEC with 12-3 records. South Carolina is a game back at 11-4, followed by Auburn, Kentucky, and Florida at 10-5. There are no tie-breakers to determine the SEC Regular Season Champion. Tie-breakers are used to determine seeding for the NCAA Tournament. Being the 1-seed or 2-seed in the SEC Tournament carries some value, but more important is gaining the double-bye that goes to the top four SEC teams. Alabama, barring a three-game collapse should earn a double bye.

The remaining SEC regular season games for the six, SEC championship contenders are listed below. It is easy to see that Auburn has the easiest trio of games, followed by the Kentucky Wildcats.

  • Alabama Crimson Tide - Tennessee, at Florida, Arkansas
  • Tennessee Vols - at Alabama , at South Carolina, Kentucky
  • South Carolina Gamecocks - Florida, Tennessee, at Mississippi State
  • Auburn Tigers - Mississippi State, at Missouri, Georgia
  • Kentucky Wildcats - Arkansas, Vanderbilt, at Tennessee
  • Florida Gators - at South Carolina, Alabama, Vanderbilt

Alabama Basketball and the NCAA Tournament

Thursday, Jerry Palm's Bracketology had the Alabama Crimson Tide as a 3-seed in the South Region, with an opening game against the Akron Zips. A win over Akron would lead to a second-round game against Colorado State vs. Indiana State. Palm's bracket has seven SEC teams in the Big Dance. Along with Bama, there is 2-seed Tennessee, 4-seed Auburn, 5-seed Kentucky, 6-seed South Carolina, 8-seed Florida, and 9-seed Mississippi State.

ESPN's Joe Lunardi also has seven SEC teams in the NCAA Tournament field. Lunardi's seeding projection matches Jerry Palm for Tennessee, Alabama, and Auburn. Lunardi has Kentucky higher, joining Auburn as a 4-seed. Lunardi also lists Texas A&M in his First Four Out and Ole Miss in his Next Four Out.

As Missouri, Vanderbilt, and Arkansas stumble to a regular season finish, Vandy's Jerry Stackhouse is the SEC's most vulnerable coach. There has also been speculation that Eric Musselman has already decided to leave Arkansas for a new coaching home next season. Even though the 2023-24 season has been a disaster for Missouri and Dennis Gates, he is expected to continue with the Tigers next season.