Quick Shots: Previewing tonight’s Tide hoops

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Jan 22, 2015; Fayetteville, AR, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide guard Justin Coleman (5) dribbles during a game against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Bud Walton Arena. Arkansas defeated Alabama 93-91 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Beth Hall-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 22, 2015; Fayetteville, AR, USA; Alabama guard Justin Coleman (5) dribbles during a game against the Arkansas at Bud Walton Arena. defeated Alabama 93-91 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Beth Hall-USA TODAY Sports

By
TideFans.com Staff
Nov. 13, 2015

Where to watch: Alabama vs. Kennesaw State – Tonight 7:30 Central, Coleman Coliseum, -Plus. Follow along at @TideFansChris

 

Who to watch: Justin Coleman – The sophomore point guard got the start in the ’s 87-65 exhibition win last Friday against Trevecca Nazarene. In 20 minutes he had two assists and no turnovers while shooting a respectable 4-for-9 from the field, although just 1-for-5 from 3-point range. This is the first opportunity to see how much he (and his shot selection) have matured from an erratic -15. He’s likely to draw the defensive assignment against the Owls’ only true threat, senior Yonel Brown.

 

Big thing to watch: Alabama’s tempo. The Tide shot better than 51 percent against Trevecca and only committed 10 turnovers, and while KSU is a better team, it still could be one of the worst in America, picked by coaches and media alike to finish seventh in the eight-team Atlantic Sun Conference. Between new coach Avery Johnson, who has preached uptempo offense into every available microphone in the state, and ’s new 30-second shot clock, the plodding offense fans have complained about for years should be a rare sight. What will make or break the Tide this year is how well it can hit shots, shake off inevitable mistakes and avoid foul trouble while remaining aggressive on defense. Kennesaw may be a perfect test subject, since the Owls were the 20th-worst scoring in America (73.8 points per game) last season. KSU’s best hope for improvement is probably new coach Al Skinner, who inexplicably finds himself coaching in the wilds of suburban after previously winning two Big East and reaching the Sweet Sixteen at Boston College.

Follow on Twitter at @TideFansChris

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