Quick hits: Alabama downs Kennesaw State to open Avery Johnson era

Quick hits: Alabama downs Kennesaw State to open Avery Johnson era

The Alabama basketball team opened the Avery Johnson era with a sluggish 77-64 win over Kennesaw State on Friday night. The win showcased the struggles the team faces to implement the high-speed offense Johnson promised when he took over as head coach in the spring. 

The Crimson Tide jumped out to a 43-32 lead at halftime, shooting with fewer than 20 seconds left on the shot clock just a handful of times, the latest shot in the first half coming with 11 seconds on the shot clock. 

The first five minutes of the second half saw nine points scored by Alabama on 4-for-9 shooting. From 14:43 to 10:24, the Crimson Tide wouldn't score at all, a drought broken by a Jimmie Taylor layup. The Crimson Tide made seven field goals the rest of the game.

NOTES: 

  • Kennesaw State came out in a 2-3 zone that switched to man defense as the Crimson Tide advanced its offense. The Crimson Tide responded by immediately running man offense plays against the early zone to get plays at the basket
  • The Crimson Tide took its most free throws (27) since a loss to Ole Miss last March (39). Alabama made just 15, including a 2-for-6 performance for Taylor. 
  • The Crimson Tide's next game will be at Dayton on the 17th at noon C.T. That game will be part of ESPN's 24 hours of college basketball marathon. 
  • Point guard Yonel Brown led the Owls with 34 points on 11-of-21 shooting. His efficiency rating of 33 led all players by a wide margin. 
  • Alabama returns to Coleman Coliseum next Friday to host Louisiana-Lafayette at 7 p.m.

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