Mizzou Tigers men’s basketball at Alabama: Prediction, time, TV, lineups

·4 min read
L.G. Patterson/AP

THE DETAILS

When: 5 p.m. Central time Saturday

Where: Coleman Coliseum, Tuscaloosa, Alabama

TV: SEC Network

Radio: KMBZ (98.1 FM)

Betting line: Alabama by 17

PROJECTED LINEUPS

P

No.

Alabama

Ht.

Yr.

PPG

G

3

JD Davison

6-3

Fr.

7.9

G

5

Jaden Shackelford

6-3

Jr.

16.7

G

14

Keon Ellis

6-6

Sr.

12.2

F

0

Noah Gurley

6-8

Gr.

7.2

C

10

Charles Bediako

7-0

Fr.

6.6

P

No.

Missouri

Ht.

Yr.

PPG

G

4

“Boogie” Coleman

6-5

Jr.

9.8

G

5

Javon Pickett

6-5

Sr.

9.3

G

12

DaJuan Gordon

6-3

Jr.

8.9

F

23

Trevon Brazile

6-9

Fr.

5.6

F

24

Kobe Brown

6-8

Jr.

14.2

PREDICTION

About Alabama (12-6, 3-3 SEC): The Crimson Tide were ranked No. 15 in the country when they first played Missouri, but they’ve fallen out of the AP Top 25. That 92-86 result at Mizzou Arena was the first of three consecutive losses — just the second time that’s happened during Nate Oats’ tenure. However, the Crimson Tide got back on track with a 70-67 win over No. 13 LSU on Wednesday. Jaden Shackelford went off for 26 points, four rebounds and four steals while Jahvon Quinerly came off the bench for the first time all season and scored 17 points. Alabama will likely be without Juwan Gary, who took an elbow to the face against LSU and did not return. According to the Tuscaloosa News, he suffered a facial contusion and is considered day-to-day. KenPom ranks Alabama No. 16.

About Missouri (8-9, 2-3 SEC): The Tigers are fresh off their first road win of the season, a 78-53 thrashing of Ole Miss on Tuesday. Amari Davis impressed with his best performance in a Mizzou uniform, scoring 23 points on 10 for 10 shooting from the field. Missouri made smart shot selections instead of settling for bad looks from deep, played tenacious defense and dominated the paint and the glass. Freshman Trevon Brazile continues to impress, especially with his blocking ability on the defensive end, and makes the case to play much more than the 20.2 minutes per game he’s currently averaging. KenPom ranks Missouri No. 138 — a massive leap from its No. 172 ranking prior to last game.

Prediction: Both Missouri and Alabama are coming off of impressive performances that should provide a much-needed jolt of momentum. But to evaluate the keys for the second meeting, let’s rewind things back further to when they faced each other on Jan. 8.

It was unusual for the Tigers to score 92 points — a season high — against the Crimson Tide and it’d be unrealistic to expect them to be able to pull that off again, especially on the road. They did so making nine threes, something that has only happened in two other games this season.

Here’s a big reason why: Alabama was awful defensively, allowing 1.333 points per possession (also a season high for MU). Oats had his team come out in a zone, which Missouri feasted on in the mid-range. The Crimson Tide had a defensive efficiency rating of 131.0, their worst of the season by far — the next worst was 120.6 vs Memphis — per KenPom.

The two squads essentially shot the same field goal and three-point percentages, but the Tigers had the edge on the boards and at the free-throw line, which were big keys. Mizzou pulled down 16 offensive rebounds and scored 17 second chance points as Alabama gave up its second-highest offensive rebounding rate of the season (44.4%). The Tigers went 21 of 27 at the charity stripe compared to 11 of 16 for the Crimson Tide. Forward Kobe Brown, who had a monster 30-point, 13 rebound performance, drew eight fouls — more than double any player on either team — and made 10 of 11 shots at the line.

It’s hard to imagine all of that aligning in Missouri’s favor this time around. The Tigers can keep this one competitive if the defense mimics the intensity it played with against Ole Miss, but ultimately I don’t see the Crimson Tide letting a team by them twice. KenPom gives Mizzou a 6% chance to win and the ESPN BPI has the odds at 4.1%.

Alabama 82, Missouri 70

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