The Crimson Tide, how 12-2 and ranked 18th in the nation, will host LSU in the SEC opener at 6 p.m. CST Saturday, a game that will be regionallly telecast by Fox. Bama goes into conference play with a six-game winning streak.
Alabama was somewhat sluggish in the early going against a Bethune-Cookman team that is now 2-6 on the year. Gottfried called a time out and instructed his team to pick up the intensity, particularly on offense. He said he wanted Bama to be more aggressive and that he thought the Tide responded.
Alabama had a 44-23 lead at halftime, then outscored the visiting Wildcats 30-8 in the first 10 minutes of the second half. With reserves playing late in the game, Alabama built the lead to 51 points before finishing with the 47-point margin.
Erwin Dudley led four Bama players in double figures as he hit on nine of 14 shots from the field and had 20 points. He also had 10 rebounds for a double-double. Dudley had a statistically poor game in Bama's last outing because of foul problems. Rod Grizzard had 15 points, Mo Williams 14, and Kenny Walker 11.
The Tide held Bethune-Cookman to only 30.8 per cent shooting and forced 25 turnovers. Bama scored 37 points off turnovers, while the Wildcats scored only three points off the Tide's nine turnovers. Bethune Cookman hit two three-point shots in the final minute, the only three-pointers in nine tries for the visitors. Alabama hit 48.6 per cent from the field, but only four-of-14 three-pointers, 28.6 per cent. Bethune-Cookman did not have a point off the fast break, while Bama had six fast break points.
Alabama had a relatively small rebouding margin, 45-34, but the Tide scored 24 second chance points, the Wildcats only six. Bama out-scored Bethune-Cookman, 36-18, in the paint.