Nov. 6, 2011
Alabama Game Notes
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -
The University of Alabama men’s basketball hosts its lone exhibition game of the 2011-12 season on Monday evening when it welcomes Alabama-Huntsville to Coleman Coliseum for a 7 p.m. tipoff.
The contest will be the No. 19/17 Crimson Tide’s only exhibition before opening the season on Friday evening against North Florida. All tickets for Monday’s exhibition game are $6 and are available at the Athletics Ticket Office or by calling 1-877-TIDETIX.
Last season, the Chargers visited Coleman Coliseum and gave the Crimson Tide all it could handle before UA prevailed with a 73-68 decision in double overtime. That test served as part of the foundation for the Tide’s 25 win season and National Invitation Tournament championship game appearance.
Third-year head coach Anthony Grant expects this year’s exhibition to give his team a similar challenge and preseason tuneup.
“I think the main goal is obviously for us to take the next step in terms of our development and our progress as a team,” Grant said. “We have a tough opponent in UAH and they’ll put us in a position where we have to play extremely well to have a chance. I think it’s a good opportunity for our team.”
Alabama enters the exhibition contest ranked 19th in the preseason Associated Press poll and 17th in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll. It is UA’s first preseason ranking since the 2006-07 season. Meanwhile, perennial Division II power UAH, has another highly ranked squad that has garnered a No. 2 preseason ranking in the NABC Division II Coaches poll.
The Tide returns three starters and six total players from last season’s squad and fans will get the opportunity to see those returners along with a six-member recruiting class that was ranked as the fifth best in the nation by rivals.com.
UAH finished 29-5 last season, won the Gulf South Conference title with an 11-1 record and advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Division II Tournament. Veteran head coach Lennie Acuff’s team returns three players that were named to the six-player all-GSC preseason first team.
“We’ll certainly be challenged by the versatility and variety of things they do on the offensive end how they’re going to play us on the defensive end,” Grant said of the Chargers. “I think after a while you get used to playing against your teammates in practice and you need some variety so I’m looking forward to the challenge we’ll have with UAH coming in.”