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Nate Oats: ‘We’re going to see what our guys are made of on Saturday’

Alabama men's basketball plays its final regular season game at home against the struggling Arkansas Razorbacks on Saturday afternoon.

After back-to-back losses against Tennessee and Florida, the Tide will be looking to close out the year with a win before heading to Nashville for the SEC Tournament.

Nate Oats talked about the fact that Alabama will be mentally tested by how the team puts forth an effort on Saturday after the adversity of back-to-back conference losses.

“For me, Saturday is a character game…We've got to come out and obviously play better defensively…We're going to see what our players are like on Saturday,” Oats said. said.

Alabama has generally handled its losses well this season, and Tuesday's debacle against Florida marked the first time the team has lost back-to-back games since December's grueling non-conference games against Purdue, Creighton and Arizona. was.

But after losing to Tennessee last weekend and missing out on the conference title, the Tide's response to the game against Florida was downright awful, and they were dominated from the first possession in Gainesville.

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Arkansas, 6-11 in conference play, is coming off a win over LSU following a loss to Kentucky in Lexington, where the Razorbacks scored over 100 points on the road.

Alabama is currently competing for seeding in Nashville, and Tennessee has already won its only regular season title, but the gap between the No. 2 and No. 3 seeds is wide.

A win against Tennessee and a loss to Kentucky would earn Alabama the No. 2 seed, but in that case it would be a double-bye, with either Ole Miss, LSU, or Texas A&M, who had already won easily, on Friday. There is a high possibility that they will play against that team.

However, a win against Kentucky would drop Alabama to the No. 3 seed, which would still give them a double-bye, but they would likely face Florida State in their first game.

However, a loss would be fatal, dropping Alabama from the top four and likely resulting in a double-bye loss and forcing the team to play Thursday.

The matchup against Arkansas will take place at 11 a.m. Central Standard Time at Coleman Coliseum on ESPN.

Michael Brauner is a senior sports analyst and contributing writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @MBraunerWNSP

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