No. 4 Alabama bounces back, trounces Vanderbilt 101-44

Mathey Gibson, Staff Reporter

Sometimes, a bad loss can lead to inspired play.  

On Tuesday, No. 4 Alabama basketball defeated the Vanderbilt University Commodores 101-44 behind the wings of a 19-for-41 shooting performance from downtown. 

Leading the way for the Crimson Tide in the first half was former Texas Tech University transfer Nimari Burnett, who scored 11 points on 4-for-4 shooting, drilling all three shots from beyond the arc. 

Burnett, a 6-foot-6 combo-guard from Chicago, Illinois, finished with 16 points and four rebounds in only his second double-digit scoring output of the season.  

Following Burnett was freshman sensation Brandon Miller, who tacked on nine first half points en route to a 22-point, eight rebound performance on 8-for-15 shooting from the field. 

Miller, a projected lottery pick in the 2023 NBA draft, showed off his athleticism in the second half, hammering home back-to-back electrifying dunks early in the period. 

“I feel like we have depth on our team,” Miller said. “I feel like our whole team can really shoot it.” 

While he didn’t put many points on the board, it was a productive night for guard Mark Sears, who scored nine points on 2-for-5 shooting while dishing out eight assists. 

“We tell our guys frequently, just lose yourself in the game and the offense will take care of itself,” Alabama head coach Nate Oats said. 

It was also a productive night for freshman Rylan Griffen, who scored 12 points on 5-for-9 shooting while grabbing seven rebounds and tossing four assists of his own. 

Griffen, a 6-foot-5 guard hailing from Richardson, Texas, continues to take advantage of his increased role, scoring double-digits in back-to-back games for the second time in his young career.  

Anchoring the frontcourt in Tuscaloosa was sophomore center Charles Bediako, who scored 10 points on 5-for-5 shooting while grabbing three rebounds.  

Teaming up with Bediako were Noah Clowney and Noah Gurley, who combined for 17 points and 10 rebounds while stifling Commodore forwards Liam Robbins and Quentin Millora-Brown.  

Following a 24-point loss to the University of Oklahoma on Saturday, the fourth-ranked Crimson Tide proved they’re still a force to be reckoned with in the SEC, posting their largest margin of victory in a conference matchup in school history.  

“I think they answered the bell, I think they get the message,” Oats said. “They really coached themselves over the last three days.” 

After a monstrous 57-point victory, Oats’ team will set their sights on a road matchup with Matt McMahon’s Louisiana State University Tigers on Saturday in Baton Rouge.  

Tipoff for No. 4 Alabama and LSU is set for Saturday, Feb. 4, at 3 p.m. CT on ESPN.