After posting its worst performance of Nate Oats’ era, Alabama responded strongly with the biggest SEC win in program history, as well as the biggest win during Oats’ tenure.
The Crimson Tide’s 101-44 win over Vanderbilt surpassed the previous high when they dominated Ole Miss 83-30 in 1947. Tuesday’s blowout victory gives Alabama 19 wins this season, equal to the team’s winning total last year.
Here are three takeaways from Alabama’s blowout win over Vanderbilt.
Alabama’s dominant first half
The message was received loud and clear.
After Oats called out Alabama for “losing its lead” in the 24-point loss to Oklahoma, the Crimson Tide found its rhythm early Tuesday. Vanderbilt scored the first five points of the game, but Alabama responded immediately thanks to a 3-pointer from Mark Sears.
Then the floodgates opened.
Alabama went on an 18-0 run for the next 7:28 of the first half. During the run, offense missed just five shots en route to shooting, 58% from field and 53% from behind the arc.
The only hiccup on the run was Trey Thomas’ 3-pointer from the corner at 9:30 in the first half — but Alabama came back to score right away — and went on a 22-7 run before heading to the dressing room went.
While the offense was impressive, Alabama’s defense couldn’t be outshone as the Commodores shot just 15% from the field in the first half. The Crimson Tide also forced 10 turnovers, leading to more offense as it accounted for 18 points fewer turnovers.
Miller dazzles with blowout win
As Alabama’s offense heats up, #24 drives the bus.
Like the rest of his teammates, Brandon Miller came into Tuesday’s conference game with something he needed to prove after picking up 11 points in a 4-of-14 shooting night against Oklahoma.
Miller exploded for 22 points on 8 of 15 shots, along with eight rebounds and three assists in the win. The win marks Miller’s eighth game in which he has 20 or more points this season. Miller wasn’t the only option to score, which is another sign that an offense is firing on all cylinders in Alabama.
The Crimson Tide was produced more offensively by Noah Gurley, Nimari Burnett and Charles Bediako, all of whom scored 10 or more points in the win.
parts of the rock
Coupled with an absolute deluge of points, there was also an astronomical rise in the team’s assist totals.
En route to the team’s seventh game in which it scored 90 points or more, Alabama had 29 assists for the win, setting a new high of the season and also the third time Alabama has had 20 or more assists this season. Alabama was missing an assist to break the program record of 30 the team had in the team’s 114–77 win over East Tennessee State on December 1, 2004.
Sears and Jahvon Quinerly were Alabama’s chief go-betweens and put together 15 aides against the Commodores.