Tide Basketball In Bad Place - Road

A couple of weeks ago before the start of Southeastern Conference basketball play, there was a hope that Alabama could start with a 3-0 record. And then, conventional wisdom had it, the Crimson Tide would get blown out at Missouri. Now, maybe not. The Tigers are doing worse than Bama.

First of all, Alabama did not win its first three SEC games, but the Crimson Tide did win its two home games. And therein lies the rub. Bama will be on the road when it takes on Missouri Saturday. Tipoff in Columbia Saturday will be at 1 p.m. CST with television coverage by ESPN2.

Alabama defeated Vanderbilt and Mississippi State in Tuscaloosa, but lost to Georgia in Athens to start SEC play. The loss to Georgia was hardly "stop the presses" stuff. The Tide is winless in six games on the road this year and only 8-8 overall. Missouri won its first 12 non-conference games and had moved into the top 25 in national rankings at 21st. But the Tigers have won only one of three league games – eking out a close win at Auburn, but losing at home to Georgia and on the road to Vandy.

Coach Anthony Grant's Crimson Tide will always have a place in Missouri basketball history. Last year the Tigers began SEC play with an 84-68 romp over Bama in Columbia. Saturday's game will mark the seventh game between the two teams with Alabama having a 4-2 lead, but Missouri having won the last two games.

Missouri is one of five SEC teams that Alabama will play twice in regular season this year. The Tigers will make the trip to Tuscaloosa on Feb. 22.

Alabama has won three of its last four games.

Over the Tide's last five games, Trevor Releford is averaging 22.6 points and 3.8 steals per game, while also shooting 58.7 percent (37-of-63) from the floor and 44.7 percent (17-of-38) from beyond the arc.

Releford leads Alabama scorers with an average of 18.9 points per game, which is tied for fourth in the SEC.

Freshman Shannon Hale's 13.7 points per game in SEC play ranks third among SEC freshmen, while he also ranks ninth among rookies in field goal percentage in SEC play (.617). Over his last six games, Hale is second on the team with 11.8 points per game and 40.0 percent three-point field goal percentage. Over that same span, he is leading the Tide in rebounding (4.3 rpg) and field goal percentage (.600)

Releford leads the SEC and ranks in the top-15 nationally in free throw percentage and steals per game. He has made 23 consecutive free throws and is shooting 93.1 percent from the foul line this season, which ranks fourth in the nation. Meanwhile, his 2.5 steals per game average ranks 13th nationally.

Retin Obasohan (2.6 spg) and Releford (2.5 spg) rank first and second in the SEC in steals per game, respectively. Together, the duo is averaging 5.1 steals per game, which ranks fourth in the NCAA among all duos in terms of takeaways.

Obasohan joins Releford to average double figure scoring at 12.3 points per game.

Junior guard Levi Randolph (9.3) and junior forward Nick Jacobs (9.1) both average over nine points a game.

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