Tide tips off season with exhibition game

The University of Alabama men's basketball team gets its first formal review of the season on Friday, November 1, 2002 when the Crimson Tide plays the EA Sports Southeast All-Stars in an exhibition game. Tipoff in Coleman Coliseum is set for 7 p.m. CT. The game will be carried on radio on the campus radio station, WVUA, 90.7 FM.

Tickets are $5 and will be available at the door. Tide season ticket purchasers received free tickets in their season package for this game and next Thursday night's 7 p.m. CT home exhibition game against Athletes in Action.

Next Game:

EA Sports (Exhibition)
Friday, November 1, 2002
Coleman Coliseum (15,316)

TICKETS: $5; Available at door; 1-877-TIDETIX (877-843-3849)

TV: None

UA WEEKLY TV: "Crimson Tide This Week" with host David Crane: Check local listings
"The Mark Gottfried Show" on CSS beginning in January with host Tom Roberts

RADIO: 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

Alabama Crimson Tide

(0-0 OVERALL, 0-0 SEC), probable starters:

PF- 35 Erwin Dudley 6-8, 260, SR, Uniontown 15.2 ppg/8.9 rpg in 2002
C- 42 Kenny Walker 6-9, 220, SR, Jacksonville, Florida 9.2 ppg/5.5 rpg in 2002
G- 05 Earnest Shelton 6-3, 205, SO, Memphis, Tennessee 6.1 ppg/1.8 rpg in 2002
G- 14 Terrance Meade 6-2, 190, SR, Scottsboro 8.4 ppg/3.1 rpg in 2002
G- 25 Mo Williams 6-1, 195, SO, Jackson, Mississippi 10.4 ppg/3.9 rpg/4.5 assists per game
Head Coach: Mark Gottfried (Alabama, 1987)

Head Coach Mark Gottfried:

Mark Gottfried; 150-74 (.670%) in 7 complete seasons overall, 82-49 (.626%) in 5th season at Alabama; 2002 SEC Coaches & AP SEC Coach of the Year; 3 total NCAA tournament appearances, one at Alabama (2002, 2nd round), 2 (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; 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:

  • EA Sports marks the first of two exhibition games the Crimson Tide men's basketball team will play before it officially opens its season on Thursday, November 14 against Oklahoma in New York City's Madison Square Garden at the AT&T Wireless Classic benefiting Coaches vs. Cancer. Alabama will play host to Athletes in Action in its second and final exhibition game on Thursday, November 7 at 7 p.m. in Coleman Coliseum
  • Alabama's first official home game will be the eve of the Alabama-Auburn football game, on Friday, November 22 at 7 p.m. in Coleman Coliseum
  • As Alabama readies for its opener, it does so with Mark Gottfried's first hand-picked recruiting class. Gottfried was hired in March 1998 with that 1998-99 recruiting class already signed. This begins Gottfried's fifth season at Alabama and the senior season for his first recruiting class which includes power forward Erwin Dudley, guard Terrance Meade and center/forward Kenny Walker.

EA Sports Team Features College Stars

Ten men included on the EA Sports roster are former college standouts. The roster includes forward Damien Cantrell of San Francisco, forward/center Bennett Davison of Arizona, guard Mike Elliott of Montana State, forward Issac Harmon of CSU-Fullerton, forward Alex Jensen of Utah, guard/forward Clyde Jordan of New Mexico State, guard Leland McDougal of Santa Barbara, forward Mark Neal of South Alabama, guard R.J. Powell of South Alabama, and guard/forward Fred Vinson of Georgia Tech. EA Sports is coached by Maz Trakh who last season coached the Phoenix Eclipse.

Bennett Davison played for Arizona his junior and senior season in 1997 & 1998, averaging 9.7 points and 6.4 rebounds his senior season. Jensen was all-conference at Utah and a senior in 1999-2000. Jensen's claim to all-time fame is a triple double he scored at home one night against Fresno State in 1999 with 16 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists. He was all-Wstern Athletic Conference Pacific Devision and the WAC tournament MVP in 1999. Clyde Jordan palyed for the Globetrotters in 1996, bringing a double Globetrotting connection to this game as Bama freshman forward Evan Brock's dad, Ernie, was one a Globetrotter. Jordan has a 45 inch vertical leap. He led the CBA League in blocked shots in Australia for three seasons. Mark Neal played at South Alabama two seasons, in 1996 and 1997. He averaged 12.8 points and 8.1 rebounds his junior season and 12.3 points and 5.8 rebounds his senior year. Fred Vinson has had an NBA stint with the Atlanta Hawks for five games in 1994-95. He played with the Fort Wayne Furty in 1995-96. Playing overseas in between, Vinson has also played for the Seattle Supersonices (1999-200).

November is a busy month for this traveling group of All-Stars. EA Sports will play 15 games between November 1 and November 19 when it ends its tour at Maryland.

Tide Favorite to win the SEC

The University of Alabama is the favorite to repeat as Southeastern Conference Champions in 2003, according to a vote by media gathered in Birmingham at the Southeastern Conference Basketball Media Day.

Of the 35 voter ballots, 20 voted for the Tide to win it all. Alabama was also the overwhelming favorite to win the SEC Western Division. In the overall league title voting, Alabama was first (20), followed by Florida and Georgia with four votes apiece, Kentucky (3), Mississippi State (2) and Auburn and Ole Miss with one vote apiece.

Alabama's senior power forward Erwin Dudley, the 2002 SEC Player of the Year, was voted the preseason favorite to repeat as the league's best player. Georgia's Jarvis Hayes was second, followed by Mississippi State's Mario Austin and Kentucky's Keith Bogans.

The media's preseason All-SEC team included two Tide first team players, Dudley and sophomore point guard Mo Williams, as well as Austin, Hayes and Florida's Brett Nelson.

Senior Class Has 65 Wins

Alabama's senior class of Kenny Walker, Terrance Meade and Erwin Dudley have been starters together since their freshman year in 2000.

In the past two seasons this class has won 52 games and they've won 65 since they were freshmen. Alabama's records with this class are: 13-16 in 2000, 25-11 in 2001 and 27-8 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 Chases Career Starts Record

Erwin Dudley has 100 career starts at Alabama going into the 2002-03 season. Dudley has started in every game Alabama has played in since he arrived four 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 180 consecutive games between high school and college.

Dudley should set Alabama's all-time career starts this season. Eddie Phillips, 1979-82, holds Alabama's career starts record at 121. Robert Horry is 10th on the top 10 list at 108 and is Dudley's hurdle to crack the top 10.


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