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Four Alabama teams makes the NCAA tournament

There are more schools in Alabama in the NCAA men's basketball tournament than Big East teams. Alabama historically has been known as a football state; but over the last several years the state has been dramatically improving in college basketball.

Both Alabama and Auburn have had players drafted in the first round of the NBA draft. Both schools have made deep tournament runs under their current coaches. Auburn under Coach Bruce Pearl has been to the final four – Auburn's best tournament finish in its history. Alabama was the number one overall seed in last year's NCAA tournament under Coach Nate Oats; but ultimately fell short. In just four years under Coach Andy Kennedy, UAB fielding its best teams since the 1980s when Gene Bartow. UAB was in the tournament in 2021/2022 and went to the NIT championship game last year. The Blazers are back in the NCAA tournament this year.

Auburn won the Southeastern Conference (SEC) tournament Sunday to receive an automatic bid to the tournament. They received a number four seed from the committee. Their NCAA tournament run opens with Yale in Spokane, Washington on Friday. Auburn is in a bracket that includes defending national champion Connecticut.

UAB won the American Athletic Conference tournament Sunday to get their own automatic bid. They go to Spokane to play San Diego on Friday. San Diego eliminated Alabama last year, so they are familiar with southern basketball.

Samford won an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament, by winning Southern conference tournament. The Southern Conference champions are a #13 seed in the tournament and will play #4 seed Kansas on Thursday night in Salt Lake City, Utah. This is head Coach Bucky McMillan's fourth year at the helm of the Bulldogs.

Alabama lost in their SEC tournament quarterfinals game on Friday so had to rely on the committee to give them an at-large bit to the tournament; but based on their body of work, the committee gave Alabama a number four seed. They will play Charleston in Spokane on Friday.

Six other SEC teams including: Tennessee, Kentucky, Mississippi State, Texas A&M, Florida, and South Carolina are joining Alabama and Auburn in this year's NCAA tournament.

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