Alabama Crimson Tide Doomed to Miss 2014 NCAA Tournament

By Taylor Sturm
Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

The Alabama Crimson Tide started the season with high hopes after returning  a majority of their starters from last season, where they had an impressive run in the 2013 NIT Tournament. However, the transfer of Trevor Lacey to the North Carolina State Wolfpack has done a lot more damage than previously anticipated. The Crimson Tide are 4-4 to start the season and, unfortunately, are basically out of the 2014 NCAA Tournament barring a miracle.

Alabama has lost to the Oklahoma Sooners, Duke Blue Devils, Drexel Dragons and South Florida Bulls. All of these losses look like they aren’t that bad, especially because each team has at least six wins and two or less losses, but in reality, they are. The Crimson Tide have not defeated a good team all season long and, with games against the Wichita State Shockers, UCLA Bruins and Xavier Musketeers remaining, will most likely not win against any resume-boosting non-conference opponents.

Like the Tennessee Volunteers last season, the Crimson Tide most likely won’t go to the tournament even with a good showing in SEC play. The SEC is too good in the middle with Tennessee, the LSU Tigers, Arkansas Razorbacks and Ole Miss Rebels all potentially competing for 2014 NCAA Tournament spots. With an upset against a No.1 Kentucky Wildcats team or top five Florida Gators squad out of the question now that both teams have lost two games, Alabama would have to run the table in the SEC Tournament in order to sneak into the 2014 NCAA Tournament.

Alabama shouldn’t do anything crazy like fire Anthony Grant, but he needs to start recruiting for the future as soon as possible. The Crimson Tide started the 2013-14 college basketball season with high hopes, but it looks like it’s time to look forward to next season, now.

Taylor Sturm is an SEC Basketball Writer for Follow him on Twitter @TSturmRS or add him to your network on Google

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