Ole Miss was obliterated tonight by the 17-13 Crimson Tide. While Stefan Moody scored 39, it wasn't enough for the Rebels to win their first game in Nashville.
Ole Miss now has no chance at the NCAA tournament, having missed a (very small) opportunity to get there by winning the tournament. They'll end up in an NIT game, but that's nothing to celebrate at this point. It's sad that such an incredible season by Moody didn't garner the team a third tournament berth in four years.
Alabama just made shot after shot after shot from the outside early and then dominated every facet of the game in the second half. The Rebels couldn't make a shot (despite many chances at open looks). It was ugly all around. Lots of fouls, and just bad basketball.
Stefan Moody tried as hard as he could, regularly making incredible plays to score in improbable ways. It just didn't matter. When it came down to it, the team just wasn't good enough to make post-season noise. There were too many flaws on the roster, including a third (or maybe even second) scorer and shot discipline, to name a few.
This season was fun to watch at times, but it was ultimately a failure. Ole Miss returns some decent pieces next year and signed a good class in comparison to recent years, but they don't have a Stefan Moody on the roster. It's tough to see next year yielding a better team. It's possible that Deandre Burnett (who is sitting out due to transfer rules) steps in as a good scorer, and the bigs should be better. With Rasheed Brooks and Donte Fitzpatrick-Dorsey as players Ole Miss will have to rely on, the offense doesn't seem very promising though. Neither have had much of an impact on that side of the ball (at least... a positive impact). The defense is likely to be quite good, but I'm not sure who will be putting the ball in the basket.
If this team hadn't suffered injuries to its stars this season, this game may not have mattered. Unfortunately, it did, and it wasn't even close. Stefan Moody deserved a better cast to work with... he just didn't have it. Hopefully the annual roster overhaul will improve the raw talent on the team. Usually in recaps we talk about three takeaways from the game. That doesn't seem to make too much sense for this one. I'm not sure you want to read them, and I certainly don't want to write them. This wasn't a game about multiple takeaways. The takeaway is that this team just wasn't talented enough to do anything noteworthy in the postseason.