Alabama/UT-Arlington Game Preview
For the first time since 2011, the Crimson Tide basketball team goes into a week at the Top 25 of the AP Polls.
Riding a 3-0 record to begin the season, Avery Johnson and the Alabama Crimson Tide faces a tough match-up on Tuesday against the UT-Arlington Mavericks.
The Mavericks are 2-0 to start the season including a big 89-75 road win against the BYU Cougars this past weekend. The Crimson Tide, coming off a home win against Alabama A&M, had a chance to scout the two opponents on Saturday as the Crimson Tide will meet with the Cougars in Brooklyn for the Barclays Center Classic this Friday.
The Mavericks shot 54 percent in their victory over BYU and 60 percent from behind the arc, 12-20 from three. The Mavericks lineup are experience with upperclassman in their starting five lead by senior forward Kevin Hervey, who had a game-high 23 points this weekend and leads the team through two games with 25.5 points per game.
They have an experienced back court led by senior point guard Erick Neal, who averages 17.5 points and 10.5 assist per game through two games and finished the game against BYU with 21 points and 10 assist. Also Kealon Wilson joins Neal in the back court with his 11.5 points per game, 7'0 senior center Johnny Hamilton also shares the same points per game and adds 4.5 rebounds as well.
Coach Johnson made a comment on Monday about the Mavericks lineup and wanting people to come to Coleman to make it a tough environment for one of the top Sun Belt conference so far this season.
The Mavericks may have the experience in the back court, but the Crimson Tide has talent of their own at the guard position with freshman Collin Sexton and John Petty. Petty is coming off a 30 point game against Alabama A&M and was named SEC Freshman of the Week.
The Crimson Tide are also hoping to get forward Riley Norris back against the Mavericks to extend their rotation. According to Coach Johnson, Norris will be a game-time decision.
As the Crimson Tide preps for BYU and Minnesota in Brooklyn this weekend, they have a tough test on Tuesday inside of Coleman.
Alabama looks to make it four straight to begin the season against UT-Arlington at 8 p.m. inside Coleman Coliseum or you could watch on the SEC Network or listen to the game on 95.3 The Bear.