For some Alabama Crimson Tide fans one thing is different about this NFL Draft

Don't fault some Alabama fans for paying less than normal attention to the NFL Draft. It is because Nate Oats may be building a 'dream' roster for 2024-25.
Patrick Breen/The Republic / USA TODAY

Let me be clear from the start. This post discusses many Alabama Crimson Tide fans, but in no way does that mean all Alabama fans.

For Alabama fans with at most a passing interest in sports other than football, the 2024 NFL Draft is business as usual. Eight to ten (maybe eleven) former Crimson Tide players will do well in the Draft, with four projected to be first-round selections.

The Nick Saban Era will end on Saturday, with the GOAT as the all-time NFL Draft King. In what may surprise many college football fans, the King of the 2024 NFL Draft may well be Kalen DeBoer.

What makes this April and this NFL Draft different, is that Nate Oats and Alabama Basketball are drawing a major chunk of attention from Crimson Tide fans. On message boards Alabama fans are saying they have not been so excited about Tide Hoops in almost twenty years. Some even say they cannot remember this much optimism about Alabama basketball since the Wimp Sanderson Era.

The Crimson Tide's run to its first Final Four provided a spark. Approaching three weeks since Alabama lost to UConn in the national semi-final, enthusiasm has not abated. With some Tide fans, it has grown.

Building an Alabama Basketball Dream Roster

The 2024-25 Alabama Crimson Tide roster may not be finalized for weeks. That will not stop some Alabama fans from drilling down on every morsel of new information, even if it means paying less attention to the NFL Draft.

The source of Alabama basketball enthusiasm is how Nate Oats is building the 2024-25 roster. Oats has work left to do, especially in gaining a big-man, rim protector, but so far the roster development is a home run.

Expectations are high that Grant Nelson will return. Not as high, but still strong, is a belief that Mark Sears may return as well. Though there is no official number on NIL funds to build the 2024-25 roster, it is believed the number has more than doubled from last season and may now be over $3M.

Alabama Crimson Tide fans will enjoy the 2024 NFL Draft, but for some, most of their attention will be on a weekend visit by Rutgers transfer Center, Clifford Omoruyi. Omoruyi is not short of suitors but is believed to be a perfect fit for the Nate Oats system. Landing Omoruyi would boost a claim Alabama could go, into next season with college basketball's best roster. Add Omoruyi, with returns by Nelson and Sears, plus potentially adding Kansas Jayhawk Labaron Philon would make what is being called an Alabama 'Dream' roster.

Philon is from Mobile. He played his senior year out-of-state and originally committed to Auburn. He later jettisoned the Tigers for Kansas, but this week requested a release from his National Letter of Intent. Before his senior season, Alabama did not push hard for Philon. Philon was a highly-rated prospect, whose ratings increased during his season at Link Academy.

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