Tech Hosts Alabama to Open the New Year
Jan. 2, 2012
ATLANTA - Concluding the non-conference portion of its schedule and playing the first of nine remaining home games at Philips Arena, Georgia Tech hosts Alabama at 9 p.m. Tuesday night.
Individual tickets are available online or at the arena box office Tuesday night for $25. The game will be televised nationally on ESPNU, and the Tech radio broadcast can be heard in Atlanta on flagship station 790 the Zone (790 AM) and True Oldies 106.7 FM, and the Fordham broadcast can be heard nationally on Sirius/XM satellite radio (channel 91 on each network).
Tech (7-6), in its first year under head coach Brian Gregory, is looking to end a two-game losing streak, having dropped a 72-66 decision at Fordham in its last game on Dec. 29. The Yellow Jackets also lost to Mercer, 65-59, on Dec. 22 at the Arena at Gwinnett Center.
Tech, 4-2 at home this season, has played one game at Philips Arena this year, falling to Northwestern, 76-60, in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge on Nov. 29. The Jackets are 4-4 all-time in the building which will host the ACC Tournament Mar, 8-11.
Alabama (10-3), ranked in the naiton's top 25 early in the season, has won two straight games and three of its last four, including a 72-55 victory over Jacksonville Thursday night in Tuscaloosa. The Crimson Tide lost its only other true road game this season, 74-62 at Dayton on Dec. 7.
The Crimson Tide and Yellow Jackets have one common opponent - Alabama A&M. Tech defeated the Bulldogs, 65-54, at home on Dec. 19, and Alabama defeated them 82-45 at home on Nov. 23.
Alabama allows just 56.2 points per game, the 12th-best yield in the nation, and allows just 36.1 percent shooting from the floor, fifth best in the nation.
Following Tuesday's game, Tech opens its Atlantic Coast Conference schedule with a 12 noon game Saturday against 5th-ranked Duke.
Tech has played solid defense during the non-conference portion of its season. The Yellow Jackets rank second in the ACC in field goal percentage defense (36.6 pct.) and are third (26th nationally) in scoring defense (58.8 ppg). Tech has held 10 of its 13 opponents under 40 percent from the field, and only five teams have score 60 points or more against the Yellow Jackets.
Offensively, Tech is averaging 65.0 points a game, 10th in the ACC, and hitting 45.6 percent of its field goal tries (6th). The Yellow Jackets have shot 50 percent or better from the floor six times.
Who to Watch
Two Yellow Jackets are averaging double figures in scoring, led by 6-5 junior Glen Rice, Jr., of Marietta, Ga., who is scoring 13.2 points per game (12th in the ACC) grabbing 7.4 rebounds per game (9th) and shooting 50.5 percent from the floor (7th). Mfon Udofia, a 6-2 junior from Stone Mountain, Ga., averages 10.4 points per game.
6-11 sophomore center Daniel Miller has started 44 straight games for Tech, ranks 8th in the ACC in rebounding (7.5 pg) and 2nd in blocked shots (2.9 pg).
6-8 sophomore forward Kammeon Holsey is hitting 67.9 percent of his shots from the floor, but has not taken enough shots to be listed in the ACC rankings.
Tech and Alabama History
Georgia Tech and Alabama are meeting for the 69th time on the basketball court, and the Crimson Tide holds a 40-28 lead a series that began in the 1920-21 season.
Among schools outside the Atlantic Coast Conference, only Georgia (188 meetings) and Auburn (114 meetings) have faced the Yellow Jackets more times than has Alabama. Tech has a long history with all three teams from its days as a member of the Southeastern Conference.
Since Tech left the SEC in 1964, the teams have met 12 times; Alabama has won nine of those games.
The most recent meeting took place exactly three years ago (Jan, 3, 2009). Alabama won that game, 88-77, in Tuscaloosa, snapping a three-game Tech winning streak in the series.
Tech is playing Alabama in Atlanta for the first time since 1975 and has a 15-14 edge in games played at home, including a 6-4 mark in games played at Alexander Memorial Coliseum.
Tech is 361-394 all-time against current members of the Southeastern Conference.