Crimson Tide must get defense refocused in Florida rematch

By Chris DePew
TideFans.com Staff
Feb. 27, 2018

Where to watch: Alabama (17-12, 8-8 SEC) vs. Florida (18-11, 9-7) – Today, 6 p.m. Central, Coleman Coliseum, ESPN

Who to watch: Collin Sexton. If all goes according to his plan – and Bama’s – this will be Sexton’s last game in Tuscaloosa. For his home finale Sexton will match up with Chris Chiozza, who averages more assists per game (6.2) than Sexton has ever had in a college game. Strangely enough for someone contending to be the first point guard taken in the NBA draft, Sexton is averaging just 3.5 assists per game, placing him 13th in the SEC. In truth, Sexton has split duties at the point with Dazon Ingram, sometimes on a possession by possession basis. Time is running out for him to have a breakout passing game in a Tide uniform.

What to watch for: A defense that gets some bite back. It’s unlikely that the Gators will get held to 17 points in a half again, and Alabama shouldn’t need something that dramatic to have a chance of winning its last SEC home game. But the Crimson Tide does need a better showing than it has produced during a three-game losing streak where it has given up 81, 90 and 76 points. That could mean less emphasis on going for steals and blocks and more on maintaining sound position throughout a possession and securing the rebound. Florida represents a juicy target for a defense looking to salvage some pride. The Gators range up 72 points in an upset of No. 14 Auburn but before that had their own three-game skid and had scored under 70 points in six of their previous seven games.

Follow Chris DePew on Twitter @TideFansChris

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