A new era of Alabama men's basketball is now underway.

At approximately 5:19 p.m. Tuesday, Avery Johnson, who was officially hired by the program Monday evening, landed at Tuscaloosa Regional Airport in front of a mixed crowd of fans and media to begin his new life as the Crimson Tide's new head coach.

Johnson, 50, coached in the NBA for seven seasons, winning NBA Coach of the Year and reaching the NBA Finals with the Dallas Mavericks in 2006. He is the 20th men's basketball coach in school history.

"This has been a lifelong dream of mine to coach on a collegiate level and be a part of a community like Tuscaloosa and the great state of Alabama," Johnson told the crowd moments after landing. "As you guys know, I am from the South and I love the South. I've been around the SEC for a long time, growing up in New Orleans. But I want to thank you guys for coming out. I want to say to the fans, get ready, put your seat belt on because what you're about to experience is something you've never experienced before."

Johnson will be formally introduced in a news conference at 11 a.m. Wednesday.

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