Guardians Classic game notes

Alabama is one of four regional hosts for 1st & 2nd round games in Guardians Classic. Missouri, Iowa and Memphis also host. The winner in Tuscaloosa plays the Missouri bracket winner in Kansas City on Tuesday, November 9 p.m. CST.


  • Guardians Classic
  • November 13-14, 2001
  • Coleman Coliseum (15,316 capacity)
  • 6:00 p.m. CT Samford vs. Loyola-Marymount
  • 8:30 p.m. CT ALABAMA vs. Mississippi Valley State
  • November 14: Consolation game at 6:00 p.m.; Championship at 8:30 p.m.


  • $18 & $10 (youth) per 2-game round
  • Available UofA Ticket Office (205) 348-BAMA
  • Season Tickets can be ordered on


  • Crimson Tide Sports Network with Eli Gold (play-by-play) and Tom Roberts (color)
  • WVUA 90.7 FM (UofA Campus Station)


  • Live audio of CTSN's radio broadcast with Eli Gold and Tom Roberts is available on the internet on
  • Tide basketball information is available there as well as on
  • and

No. 24 AP ALABAMA (0-0 OVERALL, 0-0 SEC):

  • F- 35 Erwin Dudley 6-8, 260, JR, Uniontown, 4.4/10.0 in 2001
  • C- 42 Kenny Walker 6-9, 230, JR, Jacksonville, Fla. 6.7/4.6 in 2001
  • G- 21 Rod Grizzard 6-8, 200, JR, Birmingham, 17.0/6.1 in 2001
  • G- 14 Terrance Meade 6-2, 190, JR, Scottsboro 10.8 /2.9 in 2001
  • G- 25 Mo Williams 6-1, 185, FR, Jackson, Miss. 17.5 ppg/4.0 assists in two exhibition games
  • Head Coach: Mark Gottfried (Alabama, 1987)


  • F- 23 Willie Neal 6-8, 225, JR, Raymond, Miss. 8 points/5 rebounds in Exhibition
  • F- 24 D'Jamel Jackson 6-6, 210, SR, Jackson, Miss. 8 points/8 rebounds in Exhibition
  • C- 44 Attarrius Norwood 6-8, 230, SO, Crystal Springs, Miss. 10 points/4 rebounds in Exhibition
  • G- 03 Ashley Robinson 5-8, 165, Jackson, Miss. 3 points/3 rebounds/7 assists in Exhibition
  • G- 55 Kevin Conley 6-3, 200, JR, Jackson, Miss. 16 points/3 rebounds in Exhibition
  • Head Coach: Lafayette Stribling


ALABAMA: Mark Gottfried; 123-66 (.651% overall) in 6 complete seasons, 55-42 (.567%) in 3 seasons at Alabama; 2 NCAA appearances (1997 & 1998) at Murray State; 3 NIT appearances (1996 at MSU, 1999 & 2001 at UA); Assistant for UCLA's 1995 NCAA Champions team; 3 NCAA Sweet 16 appearances as a UA player 1985-86-87.

MVSU: Lafayette Stribling ; 253-265 overall and as head coach at MVSU; a 1957 graduate of Mississippi Industrial College


  • The winners in Iowa and Memphis play one another at 6:30 p.m. CST. Teams are guaranteed two games. Consolation play is at 6:30 p.m. and the championship game is at 9:00 p.m. on November 21st.
  • Alabama opens its 2001-02 season against MVSU. Alabama is 73-15 (.830%) in season openers.
  • Alabama is 33-1 in home openers in Coleman Coliseum, losing only on December 1, 1993 (to UTC 67-57).
  • Antoine Pettway celebrates a Nov. 13 19th birthday against MVSU while Terrance Meade's 21st birthday is November 14. Reggie Rambo turned 21 on Sunday, November 11.

Tide Heralds In a New Season!

After playing in and winning its two "warm-ups", exhibition games against Athletes in Action (103-77) and EA Sports Southeastern All-Stars (92-71), the No. 24 ranked University of Alabama Crimson Tide men's basketball teams officially opens its season on November 13, 2001.

Alabama plays host to a tournament, the Guardians Classic, to start out the 2001-02 season. Mississippi Valley State, also opening its season, is Alabama's first round opponent. The Tide and the Delta Devils play at 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, November 13 in Coleman Coliseum (15,316). Samford and Loyola-Marymount pair off in the tournament's opening game at 6:00 p.m.

Game times are the same on Wednesday, November 14 for the tournament's consolation and regional championship game.

Tickets on Sale for Guardians Classic

Tickets are on sale at the Coleman Coliseum Box Office for Tuesday and Wednesday night's game. Tickets are $18 per night and include both games that night. A youth ticket (15 and under) is also available for $10. Call (205) 348-BAMA for more information.

Ticket information on the games in Kansas City can be found on the event's website, or by calling Ticketmaster (816) 931-3330.

Alabama is One of Four Top 25-Ranked Hosts

Four teams, all ranked in the Top 25-two in the Top 10-are regional hosts for games in the Guardians Classic. One team will advance from each region. Those four winners converge in Kansas City's Kemper Arena November 20th-21st, 2001 for the tournament's championship.

Each team is guaranteed two games (at each region site and in Kansas City). Game times there are 6:30 p.m. CST and 9:00 p.m. CST each night. Alabama is on the bracket side with No. 8 (Nov. 5-11 AP poll) Missouri. The winners from that side of the bracket play in the 9 p.m. game on November 20th in Kansas City.

In Columbia, Mo., Hearnes Center, Air Force plays Yale at 5:30 p.m. and Missouri plays Tennessee-Martin at 8:00 p.m. CST on November 13th. Game times are the same the next night for that regions consolation and championship games.

The other side of the bracket includes as hosts No. 9 Iowa (Nov. 5-11 AP poll) and No. 12 (same poll) Memphis. At Iowa's Carver Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City on November 13, New Orleans plays Boston University at 5:30 p.m. CST and Iowa plays Maryland-Eastern Shore. Game times are the same for the finals the next night there.

At the Pyramid in Memphis, Tenn., Old Dominion plays Sacramento State at 6 p.m. CST and host Memphis plays Wofford at 8:30 p.m. Game times are the same the following night.

Bama is 33-1 In Home Openers

Alabama opens its 2001-02 season at home in Coleman Coliseum when it plays host to Mississippi Valley State on November 13.

Martha Stewart would categorize that as "A Good Thing" as Alabama is 33-1 in home openers since moving into Coleman Coliseum midway through the 1967-68 season. The string of successes started on February 2, 1968 when Alabama defeated Samford (one of the teams in Tuscaloosa this week for the Guardians Classic) 85-68 in the first ever game played in the coliseum. Alabama's only loss in a home opener in Coleman Coliseum came on December 1, 1993 when the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga upset Alabama 67-57. It has won seven straight home openers since that time.

Home Was The Place To Win Last Season

Home was where the win was in 2001 as Alabama set a school single season wins record at 17-1 at home last season. Alabama also set a single season win streak school record when it went 14-0 at home before taking a 66-63 loss to Arkansas in late February.

Tide is 73-15 (.830%) in Season Openers

In 88 completed seasons, Alabama is 73-15 (.830%) in season openers. Before falling in its 1993-94 season opener to UTC Alabama won a school record 14 straight season openers.

No streaks are currently intact as Alabama lost its 2000 season opener (to Northern Iowa in the Earth Grains Classic in St. Louis). One could start Tuesday night, however with a win against Mississippi Valley State as Alabama won its 2001 season opener 92-64 against Troy State (in Tuscaloosa).

All Three Visitors Have Been on UA Schedule Before

All three teams converging in Tuscaloosa for the Guardians Classic are teams Alabama has played at least once before.

Alabama played Mississippi Valley State one time previously. That was in Tuscaloosa in 1988-a year after Mark Gottfried graduated. Alabama won that game 64-46.

Alabama played Loyola-Marymount in 1990-and lost 62-60. That game was in the NCAA West Regionals in Oakland, California. Tide assistant coach Philip Pearson was a player on that Wimp Sanderson-coached team. And from just an hour down the interstate comes Samford University with a team Alabama has played 30 times previously. Alabama is 27-3 against the Bulldogs , though Samford has the last win, a 67-79 victory in Tuscaloosa in 2000. Alabama had won 26 straight against Samford before that.

Stinnett Will Likely Sit This One Out

Junior 6-0 guard Travis Stinnett (6.8 ppg, 82% FT shooter, 43% 3-point shooter) is listed as doubtful to play on Tuesday night. Stinnett collided on the court with (redshirt) walkon Jason Reese at the end of practice on Thursday, November 8 and injured his left shoulder.

Smith May Return

Sophomore 6-3 guard Demetrius Smith is listed as "possible" to return to play against MVSU. Smith has a left knee lateral collateral ligament sprain. He was injured in practice on November 3.

Guardians Classic Has a Purpose

In addition to providing some premier matchups with four top 25 ranked teams serving as regional hosts, the Guardians Classic has been created to spread a message. It's sponsored by the National Association of Basketball Coaches and the Gazelle Group, created to promote the NABC's Guardians of the Game program which emphasizes four core values: advocacy, leadership, service and education.

Tide Returns Some of SEC's Best

As Alabama begins its 2001-02 campaign, it does so with some of the Southeastern Conference's best returning statistical leaders from 2001. Junior guard Rod Grizzard, who led the SEC in scoring up until the final week when he was nudged out by three-tenths of a point, returns as the SEC's 2nd best scorer from 2001. He averaged 17.0 points a game. Grizzard also is the 2nd best returning player percentage wise from 2001 in free throw percentage where he made 81.2% last season.

Junior forward Erwin Dudley, the only player in the league last season to end the season with double digit averages in both scoring and rebounding, returns as the SEC's defending rebound champion. Dudley is also the league's second best returning field goal percentage leader (.529 in 2001).

Williams Should Start As True Freshman

As he has in Alabama's two exhibition games, Mo Williams is expected to start at point guard for the Tide when it officially opens the season November 13 against Mississippi Valley State.

The last time Alabama started a true freshman in the season opener was just two years ago when its current crop of juniors were just freshmen. Both Erwin Dudley and Rod Grizzard got the starting nod in that first game. (Dudley has started in every game since, 65 straight).

Alabama Debuts at No. 24 AP

The Crimson Tide debuts in Week 1 of the Associated Press rankings, released November 5, at No. 24. (Alabama is 26th in the first ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll).

For those who keep up, Alabama's longest streak is 11 weeks in the AP poll, set in the 2000-01 season, bettering its previous best of five straight weeks in the AP poll in 1994-95.

The highest regular season ranking is No. 4 set in 1974. Of course, the poll that counts the most is the ending poll. The highest Alabama has ever been ranked in the final AP or UPI poll is No. 5 (both) in 1956 and No. 8 in the final 1987 Coaches' poll. Alabama has finished in the Top 10 four times, in 1956 (No. 5), 1975 (No. 10), 1976 (No. 6), and 1987 (No. 9).

Incidentally, two men on Alabama's bench were among those most successful teams. Head Coach Mark Gottfried was a senior on the 1987 team that finished ninth. His assistant coach, T.R. Dunn was a player on the 1975 (sophomore) and 1976 (junior) teams.

Top 25 Includes Tide Opponents

Four teams that Alabama plays for sure and three more any of which the Tide could potentially meet up with in the Guardians Classic semi-finals or finals are ranked in both the AP and the ESPN/USA Today Coaches polls released November 5-11.

The highest ranked of those is Kentucky, ranked fourth in both polls. Alabama plays the Wildcats in Lexington on January 26 in an ESPN televised game.

Next highest come two teams who flip-flop in the polls. UCLA, Alabama's December 8 date in Anaheim in the John Wooden Classic is No. 5 AP and No. 6 ESPN/USA Today. Florida, the team Alabama hosts in a CBS game in Tuscaloosa on February 23, is No. 5 ESPN/USA Today and No. 6 AP. Temple, who Alabama plays in the Jimmy V. Classic in New Jersey on December 18, is No. 16 AP/No. 17 ESPN/USA Today.

And all three of the regional host teams for the upcoming Guardians Classic are ranked in the Top 25. Missouri is No. 8 AP/No. 9 ESPN/USA Today; Iowa is No. 9 AP/No. 8 ESPN/USA Today and Memphis is No. 12 AP/No. 13 ESPN/USA Today.

Happy Birthday Month to Us

November is a busy-THE BUSIEST-birthday month for the Crimson Tide as SEVEN celebrate their existence in November.

Leading off the birthday celebrations was Solomon Davis who was born November 6, 1980 followed by: Reggie Rambo (November 11, 1980), Antoine Pettway (November 13, 1982-Game Day vs. MVSU), Terrance Meade (November 14, 1980-Game Day in GC), Earnest Shelton (November 15, 1982), Demetrius Smith (November 26, 1981-Game Day vs. Utah), and, capping off the month of celebrations, assistant coach Orlando Early who was born on November 27, 1967.

Beat Auburn/Beat Hunger

The annual food drive, Beat Auburn/Beat Hunger has begun. Alabama's student-athletes have barrels set up around Coleman Coliseum for fans to contribute non-perishable food items which will be used to stock the West Alabama Food Bank.

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