• #1 by jbcarol on 04 Apr 2015
  • Michael Casagrande @ByCasagrande  ·  1h 1 hour ago
    Back on March 21, @KevinScarbinsky suggested Alabama look at Avery Johnson.
  • #2 by jbcarol on 04 Apr 2015
  • Michael Casagrande @ByCasagrande  ·  2h 2 hours ago
    Avery Johnson suddenly trending in Birmingham. Also, Walmart and Waffle House. 

  • #3 by jbcarol on 05 Apr 2015
  •  Matt Zenitz @mzenitz  ·  16h 16 hours ago

    'I think it'd be a great hire' among ex-Alabama players' reactions to Tide's meeting with Avery Johnson …
  • #4 by jbcarol on 05 Apr 2015

  • Cecil Hurt @CecilHurt  ·  20m 20 minutes ago

    Avery Johnson and Alabama have come to an agreement in principle on the UA coaching position.
  • #5 by Hawghiggs on 05 Apr 2015
  •  The SEC has made some solid hires. Now if Mizzou could turn it around.
  • #6 by Pig in the Pokey on 05 Apr 2015
  • John Pelphery is available. He would make a great head coach for Bama.  ;)
    as would Dickie Nutt. I heard he was gonna hire Dannyboy and HoHo as assistants, too.
  • #7 by Pig in the Pokey on 05 Apr 2015
  • Now, does Alabama do the slide and wind up with Plan Z?
    remember when Nick Saban was plan B? May be the best thing that could happen to them. Not with Avery, tho.
  • #8 by jbcarol on 05 Apr 2015
  • sports @aldotcomSports  ·  20h 20 hours ago

    Does Gregg Marshall = Rich Rodriguez 2.0 for Alabama? (h/t @CecilHurt)

    Matt Zenitz @mzenitz  ·  1h 1 hour ago
    Paul Finebaum: Avery Johnson may be better for Alabama than Gregg Marshall …
  • #9 by jbcarol on 05 Apr 2015
  • Cecil Hurt @CecilHurt  ·  2h 2 hours ago
    Well then. RT @CoachSumlin: Congrats @CoachAvery6 ! Welcome to the SEC!#secwest
  • #10 by jbcarol on 06 Apr 2015
  •  Drew Champlin @DrewChamplin  ·  7h 7 hours ago

    Early recruiting analysis on Avery Johnson hire at Alabama and many hope to see @AntoinePettway retained -

    Now that Avery Johnson has agreed to terms with Alabama to become the Crimson Tide's head next basketball coach, the recruiting questions remain.

        Will he keep assistant Antoine Pettway on staff?
        What kind of offense will he run?
        Will Dazon Ingram, Alabama's Mr. Basketball, be a point guard or wing guard if he ends up coming to Alabama, where he signed a financial aid agreement last fall?

    Johnson's national recruiting impact may not be known immediately, but the state of Alabama has several elite prospects in the 2016 and 2017 class. Madison Academy's Joshua Langford highlights the 2016 class, but the 2017 class has several more who could be high-level recruits.

    Spain Park center Austin Wiley is a five-star recruit. Teammate Jamal Johnson, a point guard, J.O. Johnson wing John Petty and Pelham forward Alex Reese will be high-level recruits...
  • #11 by jbcarol on 06 Apr 2015
  •  Bill Simmons @BillSimmons  ·  16h 16 hours ago

    Big congrats to @coachavery6 for his new gig. Loved getting to know him last year - total joy to be around. I'm on the Bama Hoops bandwagon!
  • #12 by jbcarol on 06 Apr 2015
  •  Kevin Scarbinsky @KevinScarbinsky  ·  17h 17 hours ago

    Landing Avery Johnson at Alabama would mean Bill Battle's plan worked in the end.

    A lesser athletics director would've panicked when Gregg Marshall, after a lengthy public courtship, left Battle at the altar. A lesser athletics director would've rushed out to lessen the embarrassment and change the narrative by settling for a mid-major flavor of the month.

    Not Battle. He may be a relative newcomer when it comes to running a major college athletic department, but he's an accomplished veteran at the art of the deal.

    He aimed high with Marshall and came up short. He regrouped and reconsidered his options, talking to such promising names as Steve Prohm and Brad Underwood. Battle also expanded his horizons outside the college coaching box and, two weeks after I first mentioned Johnson's interest in the job, it looks like the AD has landed a man who checks off every box Alabama wanted and needed.

    Box 1: A proven winner at the highest level. Check. Johnson won 74 percent of his regular-season games in four years with the Dallas Mavericks and guided the Mavs to the 2006 NBA Finals. How many Alabama coaches have won 74 percent of their games? One. The not-so-immortal Griff Harsh went 13-4 (.765) during his one season in 1915-16.

    Johnson was less successful in New Jersey, but who isn't? Ask John Calipari...
  • #13 by jbcarol on 06 Apr 2015
  •  Marq Burnett @Marq_Burnett  ·  18h 18 hours ago

    Good find MT @abyingtonTD: Avery Johnson interview w/ Jalen Rose a month ago. Opens w/ his college experience. Enjoy.

  • #14 by jbcarol on 07 Apr 2015
  •  Alabama M Basketball @AlabamaMBB  ·  12h 12 hours ago

    Let's give a big #ROLLTIDE as we officially welcome new men's basketball head coach, Avery Johnson! @CoachAvery6

  • #15 by jbcarol on 07 Apr 2015
  •  Ben Thomas @BenThomasPreps  ·  14h 14 hours ago

    Mr. Basketball, Dazon Ingram, sets his Top 10, talks about Avery Johnson hire @Aka_Hooper …

    Alabama's Mr. Basketball, Dazon Ingram, told late Monday afternoon that he was intrigued by Alabama's hire of former NBA coach Avery Johnson but still had not made a definite college choice yet.

    Ingram de-committed from the Crimson Tide following the firing of Anthony Grant last month. He signed a scholarship in November with Alabama but not his letter-of-intent, allowing him to re-open his recruitment.

    "I think it's a good hire," said Ingram, also named the Class 7A Player of the Year by the Alabama Sports Writers Association. "I think he is a good coach. He was a good player. I would think he could help me get to where I want to go, and that is the NBA."

    Still, Ingram said he had 10 finalists now and all were equal. His finalists, though he doesn't have offers for all of them, are Houston, Alabama, N.C. State, Arkansas, Tennessee, Connecticut, Xavier, Wichita State, Memphis and Southern Cal.
  • #16 by jbcarol on 07 Apr 2015
  •  Michael Casagrande @ByCasagrande  ·  9m 9 minutes ago

    Bill Battle and UA trustee Finis St. John flew to Dallas, met with Avery Johnson on Sat. Agreement made then.

    "Here's what I'd say to that, every parent and kid, they're going to be able to identify with me on some level," Johnson told in his first interview since being hired. "One, they'll be able to identify with me as a quality NBA player, either the parent or the kid. A lot of times with the kids and these video games, they go back and play with the 1999 Spurs, then I'm going to be the point guard, not that I was a very good shooter.

    "I don't think they'll depend on me to make shots," he added with a chuckle.

    "So the parents or the players identify with me as a former NBA player or a former NBA coach. Both parents and kids, for the most part, watch ESPN. So they probably will have seen me on my NBA Countdown show or SportsCenter."

    Johnson played 16 seasons in the NBA, coached for parts of seven years and has been an analyst on ESPN for the past two years.

    Johnson said he expects to take the NCAA recruiting test Wednesday or Thursday so he can hit the road to visit recruits. The spring signing period begins April 15.

    Having his son, Avery Johnson Jr., complete the recruiting process a year ago helped. A star player on the AAU level, Johnson Jr., signed with Texas A&M and just completed his freshman season in College Station. His father said there are no plans for him to leave for Alabama.

    "I've talked to a lot of the parents on the AAU circuit over the past several years so a lot of the kids that are 2015 kids, I saw a lot of those kids when they were in 10th grade," Johnson said. "I saw a lot of those kids when they were eighth, ninth and 10th grade when my son was in the 11th grade on the circuit."

    Relationships were formed.

    "I've probably taken pictures with their parents," Johnson said. "And I've probably heard from half of those parents 'You would make a great college coach,' or 'If you ever coach in college, I'm sending my son to you.'

    "So I think I have instant credibility, more than just the average coach, going into a lot of these homes even though I haven't so-called recruited."

    Says recruiting the state of Alabama is a priority and, "We know where to find you."
  • #17 by jbcarol on 07 Apr 2015
  • sports @aldotcomSports  ·  1h 1 hour ago

    Avery Johnson tells story of how he became Alabama's new basketball coach.

    But before they met in person, Johnson had a few questions for Battle. Was he the only candidate? How many others? One of three coaches they'd contacted, Johnson quickly emerged as a front runner.

    Battle flew to Dallas on Saturday along with Finis St. John, chairman of the UA Board of Trustees' athletics committee.

    "We had an unbelievable first meeting and one thing led to another and here we are," Johnson told in his first interview since being hired.

    Though things happened fast, Johnson was cautious at the beginning.

    "I wanted to make sure they were really serious about this because my name was obviously being mentioned for other college jobs even though I hadn't officially interviewed for any," Johnson said. "But we obviously heard my name was in play and I was waiting to interview for some NBA jobs, so I wanted to make sure they were really serious about this and I could hear in his voice that they were serious and said all the right things."
  • #18 by jbcarol on 07 Apr 2015
  •  Michael Casagrande @ByCasagrande  ·  4h 4 hours ago

    Avery Johnson embraces Auburn rivalry, but 'not just trying to win the state of Alabama'. 

    Whether it's football, basketball or bass fishing, the Alabama-Auburn rivalry matters. A lot.

    Bruce Pearl, who just completed his first year coaching Auburn's basketball team, embraced it from the start. Newly hired Alabama coach Avery Johnson is about to get a taste of the tension when he arrives Tuesday evening in Tuscaloosa.

    "I know a little bit about it," Johnson told "I think we want that rivalry to thrive and definitely continue as much as on the football field."

    There is a "but," to add.

    "But we're not just trying to win the state of Alabama," Johnson said. "We've got big, big, big goals."
  • #19 by jbcarol on 09 Apr 2015
  • sports @aldotcomSports  ·  52m 52 minutes ago

    Avery Johnson wants to improve Coleman Coliseum seating, has plan for students.

    Not one factor can be blamed for the dip in game-day atmosphere at Alabama basketball games in recent years. Attendance in the 15,000-seat Coleman Coliseum was 10,612, but that number accounts for tickets sold instead of actual witnesses.

    Improving that is part of Avery Johnson's plan now that he's the Crimson Tide's new coach.

    "I had an opportunity to tour Coleman," Johnson said. "Umm, we have a lot of work to do. We have a lot of work to do in terms of seating. There's a vision I have in mind how I want to get the students involved in the games."

    Does that mean moving the student seating, perhaps, to courtside sections along the sidelines of Coleman Coliseum? Johnson smiled.

    "We have a plan," he said. "I had a talk with (athletics director Bill) Battle yesterday about some ideas generally about what we're gonna do. Hopefully as time goes on we'll be a little bit more transparent about our plan. But you'll hear about it before we do it."

    But Johnson's thoughts were formulated in the past year as Johnson followed his son's Texas A&M games. He took note of what worked.

    "We have a lot of work to do," Johnson said. "I'm big on fan experience. You've gotta remember, I worked for Mark Cuban, right? I love Mark. I absolutely love him. He taught me so much about fan experience and also with my time with the Spurs."
  • #20 by jbcarol on 11 Apr 2015
  • sports @aldotcomSports  ·  16h 16 hours ago

    An Alabama trustee interviewing coaching candidates? Smells a bit like Jetgate.

    The last time a member of a board of trustees in Alabama got on an airplane to talk to a head coaching candidate, news of the trip touched off a scandal.
    Remember Auburn and Jetgate?

    Not one but two Auburn trustees, Earlon McWhorter and Byron Franklin, accompanied the school's president and AD on a 2003 plane trip to talk to Bobby Petrino about becoming Auburn's next football coach - while the school still had a coach in Tommy Tuberville.

    One of the many issues involved that led to a SACS probation for the university was the active and overreaching participation of trustees in Auburn athletics, including hiring and firing decisions.

    It's not an exact parallel by any means, but a similar principle may have been violated in the Alabama basketball search. Is anyone bothered that Alabama trustee Finis St. John worked alongside AD Bill Battle as the two-man search team that landed Avery Johnson?
  • #21 by NoNC4Tubs on 11 Apr 2015
  • sports @aldotcomSports  ·  16h 16 hours ago

    An Alabama trustee interviewing coaching candidates? Smells a bit like Jetgate.

    Huge difference.

    Grant had already been fired by three weeks.

    Tubberville was still employed.

    Make no mistake, Lowder still runs things down here......... 8)
  • #22 by jbcarol on 13 Apr 2015
  •  Matt Zenitz @mzenitz  ·  1h 1 hour ago

    What made Alabama the right fit for Avery Johnson …

    Avery Johnson was in the crowd for more than half of his son's games at Texas A&M last season, events sandwiched between restaurant meals with his son during which the elder Johnson would draw up plays on napkins and give advice on what to do in individual situations.

    At different points, Johnson would break down scenarios during his job as an NBA analyst for ESPN, often correctly predicting how teams would handle and approach certain situations.

    Johnson's colleague at ESPN, Doris Burke, would tell him, 'Man, you need to retire from this gig and go and get you a real job."

    Johnson missed coaching, having been out of the profession for more than two years before being hired by Alabama last week.

    What partly made Alabama the right fit, Johnson said, was the challenge.

    "I didn't really want to go anywhere where they've won a national championship, perennial favorites, gotten to the Final Four and turned out all these great one-and-done players, first-round draft picks," Johnson said. "I think from a challenge standpoint this is a big challenge. And guys, every step of the way in my career when I've faced a challenge, I've for the most part always made that situation better than prior to me getting there. ...

    "I think for me it's just the challenge. I'm 50 now. I'm an empty nester. I've got plenty of time on my hands. I don't sleep as it is, so my wife said, 'This is perfect for you.' I think at this stage of my career it's a great challenge. But as much as I see the challenges and the obstacles, I see a great opportunity."
  • #23 by jbcarol on 15 Apr 2015
  • sports @aldotcomSports  ·  13h 13 hours ago

    Alabama basketball season ticket sales get Avery Johnson bump, nearly erase previous-year decline.

    Overhauling the game-day experience in Coleman Coliseum was a priority for the new coach. In that spirit, Alabama launched a season-ticket sales drive April 8 in the hours after Johnson was officially introduced. Fans could place a $50 deposit toward a season-ticket application.

    Since then, an Alabama spokesman said they've sold approximately 500 new season tickets. That helped offset the drop of 570 season tickets between the 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons.

    Next year's season packages start at $172 per ticket for corner seats. The higher end of the scale cost $264 plus a TidePride contribution ranging from $75 to $2,000 for a court-side seat.

    Alabama averaged 10,612 paid tickets per game last season, the lowest number of the six-season Anthony Grant era. 

    "I'm gonna take a look at every experience that the fan has had over the last six years and just see how we can improve it compared to what we did on the NBA level," Johnson said. "Some of it needs to be a surprise. Gotta have some element of surprise. And what we try, if it doesn't work we'll keep working on it. But we've got to have a significant home-court advantage. It's my job, obviously, to make sure that they players can play at a high, competitive level on the court. That's going to get the fans involved.

    "But during timeouts, at halftime, entering the coliseum, leaving the coliseum, when you hit the parking lot, there's gotta be something different. That's what we're going to take a look and analyze all aspects of it."

    Alabama paid attendance averages with national ranking

    44. 9,960 in 2008-09 (last year of Mark Gottfried era)

    37. 10,945 in 2009-10

    35. 10,983 in 2010-11

    27. 12,484 in 2011-12

    31. 11,159 in 2012-13

    35. 10,754 in 2013-14

    n/a 10,612 in 2014-15 (does not include NIT game)
  • #24 by jbcarol on 16 Apr 2015
  • 4-star forward John Petty impressed with new Alabama coach Avery Johnson

    In the last three days, the J.O. Johnson rising junior small forward has spoken to new Alabama coach Avery Johnson, been offered by Georgia and Florida State, and drawn increased attention from the Kentucky coaching staff.

    Petty (6-foot-5) had an offer from former Crimson Tide coach Anthony Grant. Johnson, who recently saw Petty play at an AAU event in Virginia, reaffirmed Alabama's offer, Petty said.

    Johnson is scheduled to visit the J.O. Johnson campus in Huntsville on Friday, according to Jaguars coach Jack Doss.

    "I talked to him the other day," Petty said of Johnson. "I haven't met with him yet or made a bond, but so far, he's a good guy." ...
  • #25 by jbcarol on 17 Apr 2015
  •  Matt Zenitz @mzenitz  ·  12h 12 hours ago

    Avery Johnson approaching bold predictions different than in Dallas …

    Avery Johnson was asked the same type of questions multiple times by reporters in Dallas when he first took over for Don Nelson as the Mavericks' coach in 2005: What is realistic in terms of expectations? How long do you think it will take to get the team to your desired level?

    "I said, 'Hey, if we don't make it to the NBA finals in the first three years I should be fired,'" Johnson recalled recently. "And we did, and that was a great accomplishment."

    "I'm not going to give you a bold statement like that," Johnson said. "I have to get my arms around this thing now. It's not even so much that I haven't coached in college. That doesn't matter. It's just I've got to get my arms around this roster. I've never coached any of these players. I've got to get my arms around some of the recruits that we're going to bring in. And once I get my arms around it, whether that's first year, two years or three years, I can't tell you yet until I get my arms around it."

    But then he altered his stance, at least somewhat.

    "I will say that after this year, ask me that same question, and I think I'll be able to give you a more definitive answer."

    Alabama will have to replace its top three scorers from last season's team that finished 19-15.

    Leading scorer Levi Randolph graduated, as did the Tide's third-leading scorer, Rodney Cooper.

    Second-leading scorer Ricky Tarrant and recently received his releases from Alabama and will transfer.
  • #26 by jbcarol on 17 Apr 2015
  •  John Talty @JTalty  ·  19m 19 minutes ago

    Theodore guard Dazon Ingram opts for Alabama. Big for Avery Johnson to get him back on board.
  • #27 by jbcarol on 21 Apr 2015
  •  Jeff Goodman @GoodmanESPN  ·  Apr 19

    Alabama's Avery Johnson has hired vastly underrated Providence assistant Bob Simon, sources told ESPN. Terrific evaluator, recruiter.
  • #28 by jbcarol on 23 Apr 2015
  • sports @aldotcomSports  ·  16h 16 hours ago

    Avery Johnson gives insight into recruiting strategy, how old media friends can help.

    Meeting with reporters before the Tuesday stop of the Crimson Caravan in Huntsville, Johnson was asked if this was his first trip to the northern Alabama city. He chuckled and said "no." Of course he can't mention specific names, but nearby Madison is home to 2016 five-star guard Joshua Langford. Also, Memphis sophomore Nick King will visit Tuscaloosa this weekend.

    But there's still work to do with the crop for next season.

    "I probably watched more college games last year than I ever had in previous five-10 years so I know a lot of the kids," Johnson said. "So we're getting information, calling around and interviewing coaches that have coached against those players and relying on some of my old media folks that have covered a lot of their teams and giving me some of their insight.

    "So whatever resource we can use to help us improve our recruiting and adding players to help the depth of our roster, that's what we're going to do."

    And he's looking to step up the quality of recruit Alabama attracts. After his introduction April 8, Johnson said he'd be interested in players on the one-and-done level...
  • #29 by jbcarol on 26 Apr 2015
  •  Drew Champlin @DrewChamplin  ·  8h 8 hours ago

    ICYMI, Avery Johnson and Alabama got a key transfer commit today -

    Nick King, a forward who transferred from Memphis, committed to Alabama after taking an official visit to the school this weekend, his father Greg confirmed to

    King will sit out the 2015-16 season and be ready in the fall of 2016. He will have two years left to play.

    "We got down there and Coach Avery (Johnson) explained to Nick what he was trying to do with the program and what he wanted to do with Nick," Greg King said. "Nick said he loved the campus and loved everything about the visit."

    The 6-foot-7, 220-pound King is a former top 50 national recruit in the class of 2013. He scored 7.2 points per game as a sophomore at Memphis this year. He has the versatility to play either forward spot.

    It was Greg King's second visit to Tuscaloosa, as he took his younger son once for a Nick Saban football camp.

    No word on whether King chose Bama over Kentucky.
  • #30 by jbcarol on 28 Apr 2015
  •  Jeff Borzello @jeffborzello  ·  22m 22 minutes ago

    Wouldn't expect Lamonte Turner to choose Alabama. Hearing new staff hasn't offered him. Four-star guard expected to reclassify to 2015.

    Lamonte' Turner @2Turner_
    First I would like to thank every college coach and staff that invested time in recruiting me, but me and my family have decided
    That I will reclassify up to the 2015 class and enroll in college this fall.. I will announce my college decision tomorrow around this time!
    LIST NO SPECIFIC ORDER: Louisville, Wichita State, Tennessee, Florida, Florida State, Auburn, Alabama
    2:52 PM - 27 Apr 2015
  • #31 by jbcarol on 29 Apr 2015
  • sports @aldotcomSports  ·  3h 3 hours ago
    Avery Johnson lists 2 positions he's still targeting in 2015 recruiting.

    "We're not focused on guards," Johnson said Tuesday at the Crimson Caravan stop in Dothan. "We're focused more on the small forward position and potentially adding a bigger guy. But we're in a stage right now, because we're very late to this game, especially with 2015, outside of the point guard position, you have to think about the best player available."

    Only a handful of the top names in the current class remain available, so there's a search for off-radar talents.
  • #32 by jbcarol on 07 May 2015
  •  Michael Casagrande @ByCasagrande  ·  2h 2 hours ago

    Avery Johnson explains Alabama scheduling plan for Year 1, where big-name opponents fit in.

    There's a well-defined list for Avery Johnson. Recruiting and filling the coaching staff are priorities as he completes his first month on the job at Alabama.

    There are other matters, of course, and they include scheduling non-conference games for Year 1. The Crimson Tide had games with Xavier, South Florida, Wichita State, UCLA last season, but all four were the second meeting of two-year deals.

    The only series that carries over to next season is a return trip to Southern Miss after the Golden Eagles visited Coleman Coliseum last season.

    Alabama will also play in the Orlando Classic from Nov. 26-29 along with Dayton, Notre Dame, Wichita State, Xavier, USC, Iowa and Monmouth.

    "We've been invited to quite a few tournaments and games to play against other conferences," Johnson said. "I think early on in the season, we have to play teams that we can be very competitive with, but at the same time keeping our RPI in mind. We have a nice looking tournament coming up in Orlando with some really good teams, but that's something we're taking a hard look at right now."

    Newly hired assistant coach Bob Simon will be instrumental in the scheduling process, Johnson said.
  • #33 by jbcarol on 08 May 2015
  • sports @aldotcomSports  ·  47m 47 minutes ago

    Avery Johnson lists 3 things Alabama must improve before season starts.

    Year 1 will be a challenge.

    "I want to play a lot faster," Johnson said. "I think it's important for us to play a lot faster. I want to increase the possessions of our games and not worry so much about the 35-second shot clock."

    A year ago, Alabama ranked 283rd among 351 Division I teams in possessions per game...

    "We need players who can think on their feet, make quick decisions," he said. "A lot of what I've been talking to them about is reading and reacting, reacting to different situations because every situation can be different."

    Being in the right position to make those judgments is important as well.

    "Spacing," Johnson said. "We don't understand spacing right now. Passing on time and on target and being efficient in everything we're doing.

    "We're a long ways off from being a very good basketball team," he said. "But we'll get there. It's just going to take a lot of work."
  • #34 by DeltaBoy on 08 May 2015
  • Avery a solid Coach and will get Bama Hoops back to respectability.
  • #35 by jbcarol on 08 May 2015
  • sports @aldotcomSports  ·  2h 2 hours ago

    Avery Johnson Jr. to transfer, join father at Alabama.
  • #36 by jbcarol on 10 May 2015
  •  Matt Zenitz @mzenitz  ·  14h 14 hours ago

    Watch Avery Johnson's video message to Alabama fans, mothers …

    With the court at Coleman Coliseum as a backdrop, Alabama coach Avery Johnson posted a video early Saturday morning with a message for fans as well as for mothers in advance of Mother's Day Sunday.
  • #37 by jbcarol on 17 May 2015
  •  Drew Champlin @DrewChamplin  ·  24h 24 hours ago

    New Mexico transfer guard visits Alabama; Crimson Tide hoops recruiting update

    With three scholarships left for the 2015-16 season, new Alabama head coach Avery Johnson is trying to get the right fits in to fill out the roster.

    Alabama has hosted one 2015 recruit in small forward Dikembe Dixson from Mingo Central in West Virginia, but elected not to offer and pursue Dixson further. Alabama is hosting Kobie Eubanks, a four-star shooting guard from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., next week...

    Alabama recently hosted Arthur Edwards, a 6-foot-6, 210-pound guard/forward who left New Mexico after his junior season...

    Alabama has offered James White, a power forward transfer from UALR. He recently visited Alabama officially and has visits to Georgia Tech and Georgia upcoming. White has one year of eligibility left, but is immediately eligible.

    It's not clear if Avery Johnson Jr., the coach's son who transferred from Texas A&M, will be on scholarship or not.
  • #38 by jbcarol on 27 May 2015
  •  Matt Zenitz @mzenitz  ·  7h 7 hours ago

    Dazon Ingram, assistant coach search among topics discussed by Avery Johnson at SEC meetings …

    —— Emphasizing that he was speaking as a father — not as a coach — Johnson said his son, Avery Johnson Jr., will take an official visit to Alabama next week.

    Without specifying whether it will be his son or another player, Johnson said he expects to add a player to Alabama's roster next week.

    A guard, Johnson Jr. received his release from Texas A&M May 8.

    —— The list of candidates for Alabama's third assistant coach job has been narrowed down, Johnson said.

    Johnson and athletic director Bill Battle will meet with a candidate next week.

    "Part of it is his schedule," Johnson said. "We're both busy this week, so we're going to meet with a coach next week, and we'll see where it goes."

    —— Prized freshman Dazon Ingram will play point guard, Johnson said.

    "Dazon Ingram is a 6-6 — 6-5 ½ without shoes — 6-6 point guard," Johnson said. "That's what he is. He is a point guard."

    —— Johnson was asked what he meant when he told Alabama fans to "buckle up."

    "Just buckle up with what we're going to do in terms of recruiting and also our style of play," Johnson said. "We want to play a faster tempo. We want to play a little bit more of an NBA tempo, and hopefully our fans will enjoy our product of the way we can shoot the 3. With our guys that can play above the rim, we want them to play above the rim. We have a lot of quickness in our backcourt with guys that can push the ball up the floor. So hopefully once I get my arms around this team — it's not going to happen in the first week — hopefully as the season goes on we'll get better and better and play faster and faster..."
  • #39 by jbcarol on 04 Jun 2015
  • Matt Zenitz ‏@mzenitz  25m25 minutes ago
    Alabama adds big-name AAU coach to Tide staff …

    Avery Johnson has filled the remaining opening on his staff at Alabama with a big-name, longtime AAU coach who has coached players such as ex-Kentucky star and current Los Angeles Laker Julius Randle, Duke's Matt Jones and Avery Johnson Jr.

    The Tide have hired Scott Pospichal, who will work in conjunction with associate head coach Bob Simon and assistant coach Antoine Pettway.

    Pospichal, who has more than 30 years of coaching experience at the AAU, junior college college and high school levels, had coached the AAU power Texas Titans of the Nike Elite Youth Basketball League since 2005.

    More than 25 of Pospichal's Titans players signed Division I scholarships.

    "Scott is a legendary AAU coach, and we are very excited for him to join our program at the University of Alabama," Johnson said in a statement. "During his time with the Texas Titans, he has helped develop numerous players who have went on to do great things at the college and professional levels. He is an excellent coach who specializes in the offensive part of the game and is a great communicator."
  • #40 by jbcarol on 05 Jun 2015
  • Matt Zenitz ‏@mzenitz 14h14 hours ago

    Will new assistant help Alabama land blue-chip 2016 recruit? …

    Scott Pospichal has been a trusted confidant for blue-chip Class of 2016 prospect Marques Bolden throughout Bolden's recruiting process, there to answer questions and provide advice as Bolden has racked up scholarship offers from high-profile programs such as Duke.

    Pospichal's relationship with Bolden could be an advantage for Alabama.

    The Tide announced their hire of Pospichal Thursday.

    ESPN ranks the 6-foot-10, 235-pound Bolden as a high-end four-star prospect, the second-best center and the 19th-best overall prospect in next year's recruiting class.

    In addition to Duke, Bolden has scholarship offers from schools such as Kentucky, Kansas and Louisville...
  • #41 by jbcarol on 09 Jun 2015
  • Matt Zenitz ‏@mzenitz 2h2 hours ago

    Julius Randle among well-known players Alabama's new assistant has helped develop …

    While new Tide assistant Scott Pospichal has limited experience coaching above the high school or AAU level, his work with players such as Randle has earned him a strong reputation as a developer of talent.

    With Pospichal's help, Randle evolved from an inconsistent — and at times emotional — fifth grader into one of the top prospects in the Class of 2013 before moving on to Kentucky and eventually being drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers.

    Prior to joining Alabama, Pospichal had coached the AAU power Texas Titans since 2005.

    More than 25 of Pospichal's players went on to sign Division I scholarships. That includes Randle, new Tide point guard Avery Johnson Jr. and Duke's Matt Jones.

    "Being around these guys and growing up with them and developing them I think it gives us credibility is what it does because you can look around and say how good is Julius Randle, how good is Matt Jones, how good is [Vanderbilt standout] Damian Jones, how good is [Texas A&M forward and former top recruit] Tyler Davis?" Pospichal said. "What about Mickey Mitchell at Ohio State and [Texas A&M forward] D.J. Hogg and players like that?

    "I think it has definitely prepared us. It will give us some credibility with the kids that we've not coached because they've played against us or seen our teams play, and they'll know at the level they can play."

    "Scott is a legendary AAU coach and we are very excited for him to join our program at the University of Alabama," Johnson said. "During his time with the Texas Titans, he has helped develop numerous players who have went on to do great things at the college and professional levels. He is an excellent coach who specializes in the offensive part of the game and is a great communicator.

    "We went through an extensive, vigorous hiring process to bring in the person who we felt would best help us in every aspect of our program, focusing on the areas of recruiting, coaching and player development. There is no doubt in my mind that Scott fits this mold perfectly and will be a tremendous asset to our program."
  • #42 by jbcarol on 12 Jun 2015
  • It's the match up everyone's wanted, just not the right sport.

    Alabama and Oregon will be begin a two-year deal next season... The home-and-home series will begin in Tuscaloosa next season...

    An Alabama spokesman could not confirm the matchup when contacted Thursday afternoon.

    New coach Avery Johnson explained his scheduling thoughts during the Crimson Caravan. Challenging non-conference games have positives and negatives.

    "It's important, but again, this is our first year," Johnson said. "I don't know if we're ready to play the teams that are ranked first, second and third in the preseason whenever that comes out. But we have to have a competitive schedule but at the same time we have some bye-game situations that we're going to play some teams that we should have a lot of success against.

    "We have a lot of young players. We have a lot of young players and obviously everybody is new so we don't want to jump out there in the deep water and try to bite off something that's too much for us to chew on, especially in this first year."
  • #43 by jbcarol on 15 Jun 2015
  • sports ‏@aldotcomSports 37m37 minutes ago

    Alabama basketball roster still incomplete, Avery Johnson says.

    "We're still not done with our roster," he said Monday. "We still have to add one or two more players and once we add those guys, hopefully for the second session of summer school, we'll be able to take our whole program to the next level because our numbers are a little bit down right now, especially with a couple guys injured."

    One of those players is his son, Avery Johnson Jr. The transfer from Texas A&M will enroll in the second summer school session beginning July 1.

    The injuries, left over from last year, have limited the Tide to nine players in off-season workouts. That makes five-on-five action a challenge.

    Johnson said Shannon Hale is still limited after off-season surgery to correct a broken foot.

    "I've been taking it really slow with him," Johnson said.

    Michael Kessons has also been limited along with Riley Norris, who injured his wrist late last season.

    So with one man short of 5-on-5, and a former NBA champion coaching, any chance Johnson steps in the action?

    "I don't know if he's ready for that yet," said smiling senior point guard Retin Obasohan.
  • #44 by jbcarol on 17 Jun 2015
  • Avery Johnson updates Alabama schedule talks, would like 10-minute quarters

    Avery Johnson wears many hats right now. Currently, he's a basketball camp leader along with recruiter seeking players and one more staff member.

    The Alabama basketball coach is also trying to fill a schedule for his first season with the Crimson Tide. Non-conference schedules are starting to come out around the nation, but Alabama's is still under construction.

    "We're getting closer," he said Monday. "I want you to know I'm a man of my word. We are getting closer, but we still have some work to do with some of the games we're scheduling. Hopefully ... we have some contracts that have gone out, hopefully we'll have some news on that."

    Could that include Oregon? Reports of a home-and-home series with the Ducks surfaced last week.

    "That's what I've heard," Johnson said with a smile but without confirmation of a deal.

    Johnson also weighed in on the rule changes coming to college basketball. The shot clock will now be 30 seconds instead of 35 is the most significant change.

    "I love the 30-second shot clock," he said. "We don't even practice with the 30-second shot clock so it's going to suit us just fine. We need to speed up the game. We were 293rd in the NCAA last year in possession. You're talking about giving me sleepless nights. I'm not going to be able to sleep if we're the same area."

    Johnson plans on turning up the tempo of the 2015-16 Alabama basketball team, so he wasn't on planning testing the 35-second clock anyway.

    The women's game at the college level already had a 30-second shot clock. They changed a few more rules for their game for the coming season. Instead of playing two 20-minute halves, women's basketball will involve four 10-minute quarters.

    "I would hope we'd do that in the men's game," Johnson said. "I think the more we can resemble what's happening on the NBA level, that's better for our game. If we would have gone from a 35-second shot clock to a 24-second shot clock and play four 10-minute quarters, I would have been just as happy."
  • #45 by jbcarol on 19 Jun 2015
  • Trevor Releford was a counselor at Avery Johnson's first basketball camp

    "I can just tell the changes with what the guys are telling me, it's good for them," Releford said. "(Johnson's) been to the highest level that everyone wants to get to and knows how to get there. He wasn't always the best player, so some of these guys can take that route and he can help them get there."

    Still, Grant's firing in March was upsetting. Releford referred to him as "my guy" who recruited him from Kansas City. Releford recalled the phone call from Grant after he was dismissed.

    "He basically called me and made sure, because I was hurt, he just made sure I still had everything taken care of," Releford said. "That's just the kind of guy he is. And he let me know what was going on. .... He was just like 'I'm not mad about anything, it's their decision.'"

    It was still a surprise to Releford.

    "I couldn't believe it just because the kind of coach he is and the kind of person he is and kind of coach he is," he said.

    The two still talk weekly. Grant, now an assistant under Billy Donovan with the Oklahoma City Thunder, encouraged Releford to stay close to the Alabama program even though he was no longer involved.
  • #46 by jbcarol on 20 Jun 2015
  • Class of 2015 shooting guard Kobie Eubanks is one of the best available players left that can play college basketball next season. Eubanks announced on Friday night that he will decide his college decision on Monday.

    The former Baylor commit is currently regarded as the No. 101 prospect in the 2015 national class

    A 6-foot-5 shooting guard with range and athleticism, Eubanks took a recent visit to Alabama in May and the Crimson Tide are rumored to be in strong position in this one. During the recruiting process, Eubanks also took official visits to Oregon in January and Texas in March during the Rick Barnes tenure.
  • #47 by jbcarol on 21 Jun 2015
  • Bama AD Bill Battle finally spoke out about what his expectations are for new basketball coach Avery Johnson

    Q: Your big hire this year was new men's basketball coach Avery Johnson. Everyone sees the personality, but how has it been working with him since he took over?

    A: He's been great. He's been great ever since I met him. I'm more impressed with him every time I meet with him. He's high energy. He creates energy wherever he goes. I watched practice the other day, and his practices are definitely high energy.

    I think we're in for a treat. I don't know how good we're going to be, but we're going to play with energy and hustle and be a whole lot quicker than we've been in the past. How that translates in wins and losses remains to be seen, but I believe that Avery can sell players to come to Alabama who are talented players that want to get into the NBA.

    I think he can sell parents on Alabama being a good place for their kids to come. I know I was a whole lot better coach when I had good players than I was when I didn't have good players. Avery is a high energy guy who doesn't sleep much. I continue to be impressed with how he thinks, how he makes decisions and does the things that he does.

    Q: Avery Johnson is trying to change the culture and put his stamp on the program. What are some realistic expectations for him in Year 1?

    A: I don't know. Talent-wise, I think we are somewhere around the middle of the pack. I think we had a pretty good (2015) recruiting class. I saw we were picked to finish in the bottom of the league by some people. We like the players that we have.

    The transfer we got from Memphis (Nick King) is pretty good...
  • #48 by jbcarol on 22 Jun 2015
  • New Alabama head coach Avery Johnson landed a quality addition to his 2015 recruiting class Monday afternoon, as four-star shooting guard Kobie Eubanks announced that he’ll be attending the SEC school.

    The 6-foot-5 Eubanks, who attended Elev-8 Academy in Fort Lauderdale, Florida this year, was originally a Baylor signee before reclassifying to 2015 and ultimately de-committing from the program in late November. Eubanks took four of his five available official visits before coming to this decision, taking trips to Oregon, Texas and Kansas in addition to Alabama. Eubanks, who played his grassroots basketball for the E1T1 program in Florida, visited Alabama in mid-May.

    “Kobie Eubanks is a quality late pickup for Alabama and gives Avery Johnson a guard who can come in and be productive right away,” NBC Sports recruiting insider Scott Phillips said. “Eubanks is a capable scorer with the ability to hit shots and attack the rim.”
  • #49 by jbcarol on 23 Jun 2015
  • Michael Casagrande ‏@ByCasagrande  2h2 hours ago
    Avery Johnson gets $225 monthly cell phone stipend. See other perks of contract approved Tuesday.

    ...the deal runs through 2021 and will pay Johnson more than $2.8 million a year. He'll make a base salary of $265,000 a year with a $2.535 million talent fee and $12,000 for expenses.

    The contract also calls for potential extensions or renegotiation after the 2017 season.

    The deal also includes buy-outs. If Johnson is fired without cause, he'd be owed between $7 million (after first year) to $1 million (after 2020 season). Johnson also has a buyout if he leaves early. It includes both professional and collegiate coaching jobs. His buyout starts at $3.5 million after Year 1 and remains as high as $2 million after the 2019 season.
  • #50 by jbcarol on 26 Jun 2015
  •  Michael Casagrande ‏@ByCasagrande 14h14 hours ago

    Malik Rose [finally] responds to conflicting reports linking him to Alabama job.

    Conflicting reports surfaced Thursday morning regarding a former NBA player joining the Alabama coaching staff. Yahoo Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski reported Malik Rose was mulling an offer to join Avery Johnson's staff, but ESPN quickly said that wasn't the case.

    Yahoo reported Rose was to make a decision over the weekend about the special assistant to the head coach position. By Thursday afternoon, Rose responded to the reports while appearing on his SiriusXM radio show.

    "I got that offer from Avery about a month ago almost," Rose said. "He called me and asked me if I wanted to come down. ... It's not the right time for me to make that move. I told them that a couple of weeks ago and the story just broke so there was truth to the story, it's just a little dated."

    Rose played in the NBA from 1996-2008 and was a teammate of Johnson's with the Spurs in the early 2000s. He currently works for NBA-TV, does Philadelphia 76ers broadcasts and appears on SiriusXM radio...

    Avery Johnson said he was still looking to fill the special assistant to the head coach position.