This article is part of our College Hoops Barometer series.
Alabama is just a football school, right? Sure, the football program currently has Nick Saban, the Heisman Trophy and the National Championship. Meanwhile, the men's basketball team was picked to finish fifth in the SEC preseason polls. Fast forward more than two months, though, and Alabama's hoops squad has matched its football counterpart. The Tide sit at 9-0 in SEC conference play thus far. Alabama is experienced, with seniors Herb Jones and John Petty leading the way. Sophomore Jaden Shackelford is quietly one of the better guards in the conference as well, while Villanova transfer Jahvon Quinerly has provided an additional spark. Freshman Josh Primo has also come into his own of late, scoring at least 10 points in five of the last six games for the Tide. If there is one knock on 'Bama, they don't have a ton of size on the interior. That being said, all of their guards rebound well, and Alabama is still 37th in the entire nation in rebounds per game. With 10 wins in a row, Alabama sits at three games ahead of the next closest competitor in the SEC. The Alabama football program may be used to winning, but the hoops program has won the regular season crown just once in the last 30 years (2002). We could be witnessing history, and enough cannot be said about the job being done by second-year head coach Nate Oats in that regard as well.
Here are some more players (and programs) making noise in