SEC Basketball Preview/Prediction: Alabama at Kentucky

Alabama and Kentucky logos

Alabama visits Kentucky on Saturday in a key SEC basketball matchup. Look inside for a preview of the game along with a prediction of the game’s final score.

By 14Powers Hoops

Stats | RPI | Players | Scouting Report | Prediction | Time/TV

Team Statistical Comparison

FG% 3PT% FT% ORB TRB AST STL BLK TO
Alabama 0.445 0.372 0.706 163 580 203 91 61 224
Alabama OPP 0.419 0.304 0.726 165 544 169 123 56 197
Kentucky 0.464 0.301 0.782 137 524 213 75 66 174
Kentucky OPP 0.387 0.297 0.664 130 433 151 69 39 187

Stats | RPI | Players | Scouting Report | Prediction | Time/TV

Statistical Leaders

Alabama Scoring Leaders

PLAYER PPG FGM FTM 3PTM
John Petty Jr. 16.7 75 34 50
Kira Lewis Jr. 16.6 87 36 23
Jaden Shackelford 12.8 54 39 32
James Bolden 9.3 36 18 21
Herbert Jones 9.1 45 27 1
Alex Reese 9.1 42 20 24
Javian Davis 7.4 34 35 0
Galin Smith 2.8 17 5 0
Jaylen Forbes 2.5 10 9 4

Alabama Rebounding Leaders

PLAYER OR DR TR RPG
John Petty Jr. 22 80 102 7.3
Kira Lewis Jr. 16 64 80 5.7
Herbert Jones 20 53 73 5.6
Alex Reese 15 54 69 4.9
Javian Davis 26 38 64 4.6
Jaden Shackelford 14 39 53 3.8
Jaylen Forbes 9 24 33 2.5
Galin Smith 14 19 33 2.4
James Bolden 12 13 25 2.1
Tyler Barnes 0 4 4 1.0

Kentucky Scoring Leaders

PLAYER PPG FGM FTM 3PTM
Tyrese Maxey 14.0 65 49 17
Nick Richards 13.0 74 34 0
Ashton Hagans 12.9 54 64 9
Immanuel Quickley 12.8 49 48 21
Nate Sestina 7.4 25 22 9
EJ Montgomery 7.3 37 5 1
Keion Brooks Jr. 5.9 34 11 3
Kahlil Whitney 4.1 22 9 4
Johnny Juzang 1.7 6 6 2

Kentucky Rebounding Leaders

PLAYER OR DR TR RPG
Nick Richards 35 70 105 7.5
Nate Sestina 19 45 64 5.8
EJ Montgomery 19 44 63 5.7
Tyrese Maxey 3 57 60 4.3
Ashton Hagans 4 50 54 3.9
Immanuel Quickley 9 37 46 3.5
Keion Brooks Jr. 15 29 44 3.1
Kahlil Whitney 13 16 29 2.1
Johnny Juzang 5 19 24 2.0

Stats | RPI | Players | Scouting Report | Prediction | Time/TV

Rupp Arena
Rupp Arena

NCAA RPI

Alabama: 56

Kentucky: 26

Alabama Roster

No. Name Pos. HT WT Class City-State
0 Javian Davis F 6′-9″ 242 FR Canton, MS
1 Herbert Jones F 6′-7″ 205 JR Greensboro, AL
2 Kira Lewis Jr. G 6′-3″ 165 SO Meridianville, AL
3 Alex Reese F 6′-9″ 245 JR Pelham, AL
4 Juwan Gary F 6′-5″ 215 FR Columbia, SC
5 Jaden Shackelford G 6′-3″ 195 FR Hesperia, CA
11 James Bolden G 6′-0″ 160 SR Covington, KY
12 Jaylen Forbes G 6′-4″ 186 FR Florence, MS
13 Jahvon Quinerly G 6′-1″ 175 SO Hackensack, NJ
15 Tyler Barnes F 6′-8″ 201 JR Louisville, KY
21 Britton Johnson G 6′-4″ 183 SO Mountain Brook, AL
23 John Petty Jr. G 6′-5″ 184 JR Huntsville, AL
25 Adam Cottrell G 6′-3″ 185 FR Flowery Branch, GA
30 Galin Smith F 6′-9″ 240 JR Clinton, MS
33 James Rojas F 6′-8″ 215 JR Jamestown, NY
34 Sam Okauru G 6′-5″ 200 FR Raleigh, NC
35 Raymond Hawkins F 6′-9″ 240 FR Oakland, CA

Kentucky Roster

No. Name Pos. HT WT Class City-State
0 Ashton Hagans G 6′-3″ 198 SO Cartersville, GA
1 Nate Sestina F 6′-9″ 234 SR Emporium, PA
2 Kahlil Whitney F 6′-6″ 210 FR Chicago, IL
3 Tyrese Maxey G 6′-3″ 198 FR Garland, TX
4 Nick Richards F 6′-11″ 247 JR Kingston, Jamaica
5 Immanuel Quickley G 6′-3″ 188 SO Havre De Grace, MD
10 Johnny Juzang G 6′-6″ 214 FR Los Angeles, CA
11 Dontaie Allen G 6′-6″ 200 FR Falmouth, KY
12 Keion Brooks Jr. F 6′-7″ 205 FR Fort Wayne, IN
13 Riley Welch G 6′-0″ 185 JR Littleton, CO
14 Brennan Canada F 6′-6″ 198 FR Mount Sterling, KY
21 Zan Payne G 6′-4″ 235 FR Lexington, KY
23 EJ Montgomery F 6′-10″ 228 SO Fort Pierce, FL
33 Ben Jordan F 6′-9″ 250 SO Olive Hill, KY

Stats | RPI | Players | Scouting Report | Prediction | Time/TV

Scouting Report


Alabama (8-6, 1-1 SEC) defeated Mississippi State 90-69 on Wednesday in Tuscaloosa. The Crimson Tide built a 13-5 lead with 13:33 remaining in the first half. However, a Tyson Carter layup with with a little more than 6 minutes to play in the half, put State up 24-23. The lead would change a couple more times before Bama would head to the locker room with 42-34 halftime lead. Alabama would never trail again. Guard John Petty Jr. led the Tide in scoring with 22 points. He made 4 of 7 shots from beyond the arc. As a team, Alabama made 10-24 treys. Alabama out-shot State from 3-point range with 10 makes compared to the Bulldogs 5 made shots. Another key disparity in this game was points off turnovers. Bama led in that category 21-9.

Guard John Petty Jr. leads the Tide in scoring averaging 16.7 points per game. Another guard, Kira Lewis Jr., is not far behind Petty at 16.6 points a contest. Petty also leads the Tide in rebounding pulling down over 7 a game.

As a team, Alabama is No. 1 in the conference in scoring offense (84.4 ppg) and last in the conference in scoring defense (78.9 ppg). The Crimson Tide is second in SEC basketball in 3-point shooting making of 37% of shots. They make an average of over 11 threes a game. Bama ranks fifth in the SEC in assists (14.5 apg). The Tide is 11th in the league in both field goal defense (41.9%) and steals (6.5 spg).

Kentucky (11-3, 2-0 SEC) won its second SEC game in as many tries on Tuesday with a solid 78-69 road win over Georgia. In the first half the lead changed several times before the Bulldogs were eventually able to build a 37-31 halftime lead. Georgia would maintain that lead until the 8 minute mark in the second half when guard Immanuel Quickley’s 3-point shot put the Cats up 58-57. Kentucky then outscored the Bulldogs 20-12 for the remainder of the game to notch the win. Freshman guard Tyrese Maxey and junior forward Nick Richards added co-led the Cats in scoring with 17 points each. Kentucky out-shot Georgia 50% to 42% from the field and 50% to 21% from 3-point range. Interestingly, the Cats, a normally excellent free throw shooting team, also hit 50% from the line.

Guard Tyrese Maxey leads the Wildcats in scoring (14.0). With 17 made threes, Maxey is the threat from beyond the arc. Forward Nick Richards (13 ppg) and guard Ashton Hagans (12.9 ppg) are UKs other key scorers. Richards is the team’s leading rebounder, pulling out 7.5 per contest. Kentucky is 6th in the SEC in scoring offense (74.7 ppg) and 4th in scoring defense (62.2 ppg). The Cats struggle from three point range making just 30.1% of their attempts (12th/SEC). But from field goal range the Cats make a over 46% of shots, fourth best in the conference. UK also leads the conference in free throw shooting hitting on 78.2%. The Cats are also solid rebounders with a plus 6.5 rebounding margin. UK has pulled down almost 100 more rebounds than opponents this season.

This should be a fun game to watch. The SEC’s historical power taking on a hot shooting Alabama team. Kentucky should win this game but they’d better take Bama seriously.

Alabama-Kentucky Prediction

Kentucky 89, Alabama 80


Saturday‘s game tips off at 12:00 p.m. ET. TV: ESPN.

Stats | RPI | Players | Scouting Report | Prediction | Time/TV

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