The Ole Miss Rebels take on the Alabama Crimson Tide. Our college basketball odds series has our Ole Miss-Alabama prediction and pick. Find out how to watch Ole Miss vs. Alabama.
The Ole Miss Rebels simply have not gotten off the ground under head coach Kermit Davis. They did make the NCAA Tournament in 2019, but have since failed to take off. The Rebels have basically been a .500 program over the past three and a half seasons from 2020 through the present moment. They have not returned to the NCAA Tournament. This season’s team is heading for the NIT and is not even a lock to do that well. The Rebels are way out of the NCAA picture. They have suffered a number of bad losses, most recently to North Alabama at home, a simply devastating loss which knocks an SEC team or another Power Five conference team down at least two seed lines for purposes of NCAA Tournament inclusion. If the Rebels were hypothetically one of the first eight teams out of the field before the loss to North Alabama, they’re now at least 18 to 20 teams removed from the cut line … and in reality, they’re probably 40 or 50 teams out of the discussion. They have an enormous amount of work to do to merely get back onto the radar screen. They’re not even there, with five losses in 13 games. They’re in real trouble as they head to Tuscaloosa and Coleman Coliseum for this game against SEC contender Alabama.
Here are the Ole Miss-Alabama college basketball odds, courtesy of FanDuel:
College Basketball Odds: Ole Miss-Alabama Odds
Ole Miss Rebels: +11.5 (-104)
Alabama Crimson Tide: -11.5 (-118)
Over: 147.5 (-115)
Under: 147.5 (-105)
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Why Ole Miss Could Cover The Spread
The Rebels might not be a particularly good team, but they gave Tennessee a 40-minute battle last week in the SEC opener. Tennessee is a much better team than Ole Miss on paper, but that game was a dogfight down to the wire. Ole Miss fought tooth and nail and played great defense, turning Tennessee into a limited jump-shooting team with very few ideas and creative solutions on offense. Ole Miss can muck this game up and make it ugly, turning it into a rugged halfcourt battle in which Alabama cannot get out in transition and run the floor for easy baskets. If Alabama does not get fast-break baskets, Ole Miss can set up its halfcourt defense and play this game at the tempo and style it wants. Alabama is a really good time, but the Crimson Tide were roughed up by Connecticut’s excellent halfcourt defense earlier this season. The Tide has certainly looked vulnerable at times — not usually, but enough to notice, and enough for a good coach such as Kermit Davis to find areas on film where he can attack Alabama and keep this game very close. The spread is a not-insignificant 11.5 points, so Ole Miss could lose by 10 and still cover. There’s a very decent chance Ole Miss can do that.
Why Alabama Could Cover The Spread
The Crimson Tide have stumbled at times this season against UConn and Gonzaga, but they are noticeably better this season than they were last season. Coach Nate Oats has an identity and a philosophy, and he generally gets his Crimson Tide teams to play within that framework. Alabama was very effective on defense last week in a convincing, solid win on the road at Mississippi State. The final score was 78-67, and it reflected the extent to which the Crimson Tide controlled the game from the opening tip until the final horn. If Alabama can beat a good Mississippi State team (which has only two losses) by 11 points on the road, it can beat a not-very-good Ole Miss team by 12 or more points at home, and if Bama wins by 12 or more, it will cover the spread.
Final Ole Miss-Alabama Prediction & Pick
The spread and the over-under seem well-calibrated here, such that there’s no obvious pick. Ole Miss being a mediocre team yet pushing Tennessee hard last week creates some uncertainty. Stay away from this game.
Final Ole Miss-Alabama Prediction & Pick: Alabama -11.5
How To Watch Ole Miss vs. Alabama
TV: SEC Network
Time: 9:00 p.m. ET, 6:00 p.m. PT