No. 4 Alabama looks to stay hot against No. 15 Gonzaga
By WVUA 23 Sports Reporter Ronnell Foreman Jr
The No. 4 ranked Alabama Crimson Tide will take on No. 15 Gonzaga Saturday in the CM Newton Classic. It will take place in Legacy Arena in Birmingham, Ala.
The teams played last season when Alabama traveled to Seattle and defeated the then-top ranked Bulldogs, 91-82. One of the differences this year, the Tide is a two-point favorite heading into the game, according to Caesars Sportsbook.
Alabama Head Coach Nate Oats spoke on the significance of simplifying the approach his team takes into this Top 25 match-up, saying he hopes to “get down and figure out what we have to do in this particular game (and) what do we have to do to win this game?”
The Crimson Tide will face one of the nation’s top players in Gonzaga’s Drew Timme. He is the leading scorer in the West Coast Conference, averaging 20.5 points per game. Alabama center Charles Bediako says guarding Timme him will require getting down into a proper defensive stance.
“Obviously (Gonazga) already have lower leverage, me being a seven-footer, (I’m) probably going need to get in a lower stance,” Bediako said about guarding Timme, who stands 6 feet and 10 inches.
Alabama’s Oats has made the message clear following his teams big win over Memphis earlier this week.
“I thought we got a little too outside-focused, all that ‘other areas’ last year,” Oats said. “All that stuff will take of itself if we win the next game in front of us and just get better from game to game.”
No. 4 Alabama game with No. 15 Gonzaga is scheduled to tip-off at noon and broadcast on CBS.