Alabama Men’s Basketball Looks To Avoid February Woes
Alabama men’s basketball continues to roll despite a close loss against Oklahoma last weekend. ESPN bracketologist Joe Lunardi currently has the Tide as a 1-seed in the NCAA Tournament and AP polls dropped Bama only one spot to remain in the top 10.
With what appears to be an easy remaining schedule, we are met with perhaps Alabama’s toughest rival, the month of February itself.
Statistically speaking, February is not a kind month to the Tide. Over the last four seasons, Alabama is 14-19 in February alone. Last season The Crimson Tide ended the season 4-7. However, I strongly believe this team is different given the most amazing start in nearly two decades. With a minor hiccup last week, Alabama remains undefeated in conference play at 10-0 with a 4-game lead against Missouri, Florida and LSU.
The Crimson Tide was successful in the first February game of the year, beating the LSU Tigers 78-60 to secure a season sweep over the Bayou Bengals. The victory sets the tone for the month as Alabama heads on the road to play Missouri this weekend. Missouri is No. 18 in the nation and has won five of its last six games.
Seven games remain in the month of February and the Crimson Tide must maintain its edge and focus in order to hold onto its high ranking and projected high seeding in the NCAA Tournament.
It is obvious Nate Oats has done wonders to the Alabama basketball program in such a short amount of time. He has set the tone for the team and they have bought into his vision. February woes should be a thing of the past. Coach Oats often leads his team meetings with some motivation, so I leave you with this one from Tuesday afternoon where Oats quotes former NBA head coach Pat Riley:
“It’s easier to back away from excellence than it is to give everything you’ve got. It’s easier to let the frustrations, distractions, and fatigue of the long season erode your performance. But it’s not satisfying in the long run.”
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