Bama/Kent State NCAA game notes

Alabama, seeded second in the South, advanced with a 86-78 win against Florida Atlantic on Thursday, March 14 in Greenville, South Carolina's Bi-Lo Center. Alabama advances to play Kent State on Saturday, March 16. Also playing that afternoon in Greenville will be the region's one seed, Duke, against Notre Dame.

NEXT GAME:

  • NCAA Championships, South Region, 2nd Round
  • KENT STATE
  • Saturday, March 16, 2002 (1st round)
  • Greenville, South Carolina

TICKETS:

SOLD OUT

TV:

CBS

UA WEEKLY TV:

"Crimson Tide This Week" with host David Crane: Check local listings, airs regionally, "The Mark Gottfried Show", Tuesdays, 9:30 p.m., Wednesdays 5:30 p.m. on CSS, host Tom Roberts

RADIO:

Crimson Tide Sports Network with Eli Gold and Tom Roberts; engineer Tom Stipe, WVUA 90.7 FM (UofA Campus Station/home games only)

INTERNET:

Live audio of CTSN's radio broadcast is available on the internet on www.rolltide.com. Tide basketball information is available there as well as on www.markgottfried.com and www.crimsontradition.com (subscription site).

No. 8 AP/No. 8 ESPN/USA Today ALABAMA (27-7 OVERALL,* 12-4 SEC):

  • F- 35 Erwin Dudley 6-8, 260, JR, Uniontown 15.3 ppg/8.9 rpg
  • C- 42 Kenny Walker 6-9, 230, JR, Jacksonville, Florida 9.2 ppg/5.6 rpg
  • G- 21 Rod Grizzard 6-8, 200, JR, Birmingham 14.0 ppg/6.1 rpg
  • G- 14 Terrance Meade 6-2, 190, JR, Scottsboro 8.5 ppg/3.0 rpg
  • G- 25 Mo Williams 6-1, 185, FR, Jackson, Mississippi 10.3 ppg/3.9 rpg/4.6 assists per game
  • Head Coach: Mark Gottfried (Alabama, 1987)
  • * SEC Regular Season Champions & SEC Western Division Champions

KENT STATE (28-5 OVERALL, Mid-American CHAMPIONS)

  • F - 44 Antonio Gates 6-5, 240, JR, Detroit, Michigan 15.6 ppg/8.1 rpg
  • C - 02 Nate Gerwig 6-9, 260, FR, Pittsburgh, PA 4.9 ppg/3.7 rpg
  • G - 10 Demetric Shaw 6-3, 195, SR, Fort Worth, Texas 7.3 ppg/5.5 rpg
  • G - 12 Andrew Mitchell 5-11, 150, SR, Detroit, Michigan 15.4 ppg/3.0 rpg
  • G- 24 Trevor Huffman 6-1, 195, SR, Petroskey, Michigan 16.1 ppg/3.0 rpg
  • Head Coach: Stan Heath (Eastern Michigan, 1988)

ALABAMA HEAD COACH MARK GOTTFRIED:

Mark Gottfried; 150-73 (.673%) in 7 (6 complete) seasons overall, 82-48 (.631%) in 4th season at Alabama; 2002 SEC Coaches & AP SEC Coach of the Year; 2 NCAA appearances (1997 & 1998) at Murray State; 3 NIT appearances ( 1996 at MSU, 1999 & 2001 at UA); One SEC Championship (2002) at Alabama; 3 conference championships at Murray State (giving him 4 conference titles in 7 seasons as a head coach); Four 20-win seasons (out of 7) as a head coach; Assistant for UCLA's 1995 NCAA Champions team; 3 NCAA Sweet 16 appearances as a UA player 1985-86-87; Academic All-SEC as a player at Alabama...Born January 20, 1964 in Crestline, Ohio.

KEY GAME NOTES:

  • Alabama's last appearance in the round of 32 teams in the NCAA tournament was 1995 when Alabama was the five seed in the East Regional and defeated Penn 91-85 in OT then lost to Oklahoma State 66-52 (Baltimore was the site)
  • One more win ties Alabama's school record for single season wins (28-5 Mark Gottfried's senior year in 1987)
  • Mo Williams' 33 1st round points was 3rd most a Tide player has scored in the NCAA tournament (30 games)
  • Alabama & Kent State have played one another once previously, in 1985. Alabama won the Tuscaloosa game 65-64
  • The win against Florida Atlantic on Thursday was the 150th career win for Mark Gottfried in 7 seasons as a head coach. This is his fourth season at Alabama (82-48)

Field Narrows With Tide Still In It

By Saturday the original field of 64 teams selected to the 2002 NCAA men's basketball tournament will have narrowed to 32 teams and the Crimson Tide is one of those teams.

The Crimson Tide, ranked No. 8 in both the Associated Press and the Coaches' polls, brings a 27-7 overall record into the game. Kent State, which has won its last 19 straight games, brings a 28-5 overall record into round two.

Comparing the Stats

 
                 Alabama    Kent State 
Current Streak     W 1        W 19 
Scoring Avg.      76.5       76.2 
Scoring Margin    +9.9       +6.8 
Rebound Avg.      39.1       37.4 
Rebound Margin    +4.2       +4.9 
Field Goal %      .441       .472 
3-PT FG %         .310       .373 
Free Throw %      .735       .728 
Assists/Avg.    447/13.1   452/13.7 
Turnovers/Avg.  476/14.0   367/11.1 
Steals/Avg.     255/7.5    203/6.2 
Blocks/Avg.     112/3.3     67/2.0 
League Record    12-4       17-1 
Non-Conference   15-3       11-4 
Home Record      17-0       12-0 

CBS Will Televise Game

All live television of the 2002 NCAA men's basketball tournament these next few rounds is on CBS. The CBS announce team in Greenville is Kevin Harlan, Jon Sundvold, and Spencer Tillman.

Tide and Golden Flashes Have Met Once

Mark Gottfried was a player for the Crimson Tide the one and only time Alabama and Kent State have played one another in men's basketball. During the 1985 season (Gottfried's sophomore year) Kent State traveled to Tuscaloosa for a game. Alabama won that game 65-64.

Teams Have Similar Successes in Common

Both Alabama and Kent State share some season successes. Both teams are their conference's champions. Alabama won the Southeastern Conference regular season (12-4) and Kent State not only won its regular season championship but won its way into the NCAA tournament with the Mid-Atlantic Conference's tournament championship, its third MAC title in the past four years. (Alabama lost in the SEC tournament championship game).

Both teams also dominate on their home court. Alabama is 34-1 at home these past two seasons, 17-0 in 2002.Kent State was 12-0 at home in 2002 and 61-7 at home the last five seasons. Mark Gottfried's teams at Alabama these past four seasons are 56-7 at home.

Both teams sport their league's coach of the year. Mark Gottfried is the SEC Coach of the Year; KSU's Stan Hearth is the MAC Coach of the Year

Both teams have all-star freshmen, Alabama in SEC Freshman of the Year and 3rd Team All-SEC freshman guard Mo Williams and KSU in starting center Nate Gerwig who made the MAC coaches' All-Freshman team.

Both teams have three players averaging in double digits: for Alabama it's Erwin Dudley 15.3, Rod Grizzard 14.0 and Mo Williams 10.3; for KSU it's Trevor Huffman 16.1, Antonio Gates 15.6 and Andrew Mitchell 15.4.

One More Win Would Tie School Record

In addition to sending it to Lexington and its first NCAA Sweet 16 since 1991, a win against Kent State on Saturday would tie Alabama's school record for single season wins with 28. Alabama's 27-7 record ranks second all-time in single season wins. With a senior starting guard named Mark Gottfried, Alabama's 1987 team, coached by Wimp Sanderson, won a school record 28 wins and lost only five games. . This is Alabama's 22nd 20-win season.

Terrance Meade Needs TWO for 1,000 Points

Junior guard Terrance Meade is closing in on an Alabama career milestone, his 1,000th Tide career point. He needs just two more points as he's at 998 going into the Kent State game.

Rod Grizzard and Erwin Dudley, two of Meade's fellow juniors, reached that milestone this season as well, Grizzard now with 1,470 which ranks him 13th all-time in scoring at Alabama and Dudley with 1,334 which ranks him 17th all-time in scoring.

Dudley Will Get 100th Career Start Saturday

Erwin Dudley will start his 100th career game at Alabama on Saturday against Kent State. Dudley has started in every game Alabama has played in since he arrived here three years ago.

At R.C. Hatch High School, the Uniontown native's alma mater, he also started in every career game. That means he has now started in 179 consecutive games between high school and college.

(Eddie Phillips, 1979-82, holds Alabama's career starts record at 121. Robert Horry is 10th on the top 10 list at 108 and would be Dudley's hurdle to crack the top 10).

Mo's 33 Thursday One of Best Ever for UA in NCAA Play

When Alabama played Florida Atlantic on Thursday, it marked the 30th NCAA tournament game the Tide has played since its first postseason NCAA appearance in 1975.

On Thursday Mo Williams, a freshman guard on the Tide team, put together the third-best NCAA tournament game scoring spree of any of those Alabama NCAA tournaments teams-teams that included NBA stars like Antonio McDyess, Robert Horry, Latrell Sprewell, T.R. Dunn, Derrick McKey and Reggie King.

The freshman from Jackson, Mississippi showed no signs of a rookie in his first ever NCAA tournament game, scoring 33 points. He was 9 of 13 from the field, 3 of 3 from 3-point range and was 12 of 13 at the line.

Antonio McDyess, an NBA force and Olympic Gold Medalist, holds Alabama's NCAA tournament scoring record. He scored 39 points against Penn in 1995, his sophomore year. Leon Douglas, an All-American who also went on to star in the NBA, is second at 35 points he scored against North Carolina in 1976. And now Williams ranks third.

Mo's Double Double Also Makes for a Note

Mo Williams had two double doubles this season going into Thursday's game, but his Florida Atlantic double-double was a first in points (33) and rebounds (10). His other two double doubles were in scoring and assists as he had 13 points and 10 assists vs. UTC and 11 points and 10 assists vs. Tennessee.

Double-Double Ranks 2nd in UA NCAA Play

Including Mo Williams' double-double on Saturday, Alabama players have now produced 18 double doubles in NCAA tournament play. Going by scoring, Williams' would rank 3rd, behind Antonio McDyess's 39 points and 19 rebounds against Penn and Leon Douglas's 35 points and 17 rebounds against North Carolina in 1976.

You'd have to give the all-time most impressive performance nod, however, to Leon Douglas's 1975 game against Arizona State. He scored 29 points and a school NCAA tournament record 21 rebounds in that game.

And then There Were Two

Rod Grizzard and Mo Williams are often spotted together off the court-now they share a common bond on the court. Both have now scored a team individual season high of 33 points in postseason play. Grizzard scored 33 points against Tennessee in the SEC tournament quarterfinal on March 8. Williams scored 33 in the NCAA tournament first round on March 14.

The Red Shoe Diaries

The story has been told of Antoine Pettway's ruby red shoes-how he and three teammates spotted them while shopping this fall, bought them with their own money and vowed to all wear them whenever Alabama played. Pettway turned out to be the one who wore them the most, a feat that has made his feet famous from Mobile to Anaheim.

But the story takes a new twist recently. Unlike the iron man guard, Pettway's shoes couldn't stand up to the entire season and were tearing apart. The store in Tuscaloosa where he bought them no longer sells them, and some of his teammates even went on the internet helping him search for an identical replacement.

When all failed, to the rescue came Rod Grizzard. Grizzard was one of the players who bought the shoes with Pettway and occasionally wore them, including as recently as two weeks ago. But Grizzard knew how much Pettway loved the shoes, so he gave Pettway his shoes. So Pettway has been filling Grizzard's shoes, so to speak, though they are not easy shoes to fill, and that's not because Grizzard is an All-SEC player.

Grizzard wears size 13 shoes. Pettway wears size 10 and a half....

Dudley Is Tabbed One of America's Best

Alabama junior forward Erwin Dudley is the 2002 SEC Player of the Year and is on the final 20 ballot for the John R. Wooden National Player of the Year. This week he added to his list of awards. He was named AP All-America, 3rd team, making him one of the top 15 players in the nation in collegiate basketball.

Season Will End With No Back-To-Back Losses

Seeing as Alabama won its game on Thursday and its next loss will end the season, the Crimson Tide may now brag that it always bounced back from a loss. Out of the team's seven losses, none were back to back, a stat that was challenged for the last time in the NCAA first round as Alabama successfully rebounded from a loss in the SEC tournament championship game to Mississippi State on March 10 with a win against Florida Atlantic on March 14.

Gottfried's Do Their Part to Boost Attendance

Mark Gottfried has done his part to help attendance at the Greenville site. Along for the ride are his wife, Elizabeth, and their five children (four boys and a girl) the oldest of whom is 11.

And T-Meade Does His Part In The Postseason

Tide junior guard Terrance Meade opened his postseason play with a career high 10 rebounds against Tennessee in the March 8 SEC Tournament quarterfinal and has continued to make his push to push Alabama deeper into the postseason. He had 10 points against Florida Atlantic on Thursday. In his last three games, all tournament play, the Scottsboro native is averaging 10.3 points. (15 vs. South Carolina, 6 vs. Mississippi State & 10 vs. Florida Atlantic).

Team Nearing Games Played Record

Alabama has played 34 games this season going into the Kent State game. The school record for most games played in a single season is the 36 games Mark Gottfried's 2001 team played. (Made it to the NIT championship game).

Team Set Non-Conference Win Record

Alabama's 15-3 non-conference record this season sets the school record for most non-conference wins in a season. The previous best was 13-5 in 1995. .

Junior Class Turns 65 (Wins, that is)

The men who make up Alabama's junior class-- Rod Grizzard, Erwin Dudley, and Kenny Walker were all starters together their freshman year in 2000. Travis Stinnett, is the fifth junior, though he is a year older as he was a medical redshirt in 1999.

Alabama's junior class in the last two seasons has won 52 games. They've won 65 since they were freshmen. Alabama's records with this class are: 13-16 in 2000, 25-11 in 2001 and now 27-7 in 2002. They are 45-4 in Coleman Coliseum during their careers at Alabama. They were 11-3 at home in 2000 (freshmen), 17-1 in 2001 (sophomore) and 17-0 at home as juniors.

Dudley Nearing 900th Rebound (Needs two)

Erwin Dudley needs just two more rebounds for his 900th career rebound at Alabama. He currently has 898. Dudley ranks 9th all-time in rebounding at Alabama for a career average of 9.1 per game in 99 career games. Only ten players in Alabama's storied basketball history have grabbed 800 (or more) rebounds. Dudley's sights are now on four-time NBA world champion Robert Horry who holds the No. 8 spot at Alabama. Horry had 912 rebounds during his Tide career (1989-92) for a 6.8 rebounds per game average. Dudley needs14 rebounds to tie, 15 to own the No. 8 spot.

Career average-wise in rebounding, Dudley ranks 7th all-time. The late Jerry Harper, the SEC's all-time leading rebounder, averaged 18.2 rebounds a game in 93 games (1,688), a mark no one in the SEC has been able to better since he set it in 1956.


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